On April 26th 2018, the President of FIAA Mr. Tom Kristian Larsen received in the association premises the Ambassador of Japan in Albania, H.E Mr. Makoto ITO. The purpose of the visit was the presentation of respective Institutions and their role in Albania. During the meeting it was discussed on the present economy of Albania along with the actual business climate, with particular focus on new foreign investments, cooperation between Albania and Japan and justice reform process. Japan Programs have been a valid supporter to Albania and the newly opened Embassy is expected to have even a bigger role and impact in the near future.The cooperation between the two countries should further expand. To this regard, H.E Mr. Ito reiterated that FIAA is a strong business organization, supporting investors and a valuable partner for all the foreign representative bodies in Albania.Read More
Foreign Investor Association in Albania announces the outcome of the Assembly Meeting of its Members, during which three new Board members were elected representing the main foreign companies in the country such as STATKRAFT, SHELL and ANTEA Cement. The Assembly voted also for the election of the FIAA new Chairman, Mr. Tom Kristian Larsen, who is the Chief Executive Officer of STATKRAFT in Albania.
‘FIAA is the most reputable institution representing the business community in Albania, it has a high standing among business, government institutions and foreign missions and is working effortlessly in its mission to improve business climate in the country. Statkraft is a leader in business conduct, anti-corruption policies and integrity values and has practical, hands-on experience in its implementation. Having the honour of being elected as the President of FIAA for the next mandate, I will work towards spreading the message of integrity and proper business conduct in FIAA, among its members and the broader business community. Albania has a great potential to attract foreign investments, but it has to fight corruption and strengthen its reputation and quality of its institutions to make it happen. I look forward to represent FIAA on this journey’. – stated Tom Kristian Larsen.
Foreign Investors Association in Albania with a presence of 18 years, has been and continues to be an important partner in the development and economic integration of the country. The Association has consolidated a sustainable co-operation with local and international authorities in the country, positioning itself part of the various consulting structures focusing on the business climate in the country and absorbing new investments.
Statkraft is a state-owned Norwegian company and is present in Albania since 2008 with its investment, Devoll Hydropower, which represents one of the country’s largest foreign investment in the renewable energy industry.Mr. Larsen is a professional with international experience in Europe and Asia, in important sectors such as telecommunications and renewable energy in global companies such as Telenor, Statoil and Statkraft.Read More
In March 6th, FIAA held the Annual Assembly Meeting of the Members and conducted election process for three new Board Members including the Appointment of the Chairman of FIAA for the next two years to come.
In his opening speech, the outgoing President of FIAA, Mr. Silvio Pedrazzi highlighted some of the main achievements and challenges he had during his Chairmanship of three years within FIAA and emphasized the importance of the Organization as the best Instrument for the Foreign Investors in Albania. Mr. Pedrazzi did also thank the FIAA members for the support and trust given to him, expressing his will to further continue his mission on representing FIAA as Member of the Board of Directors.Read More
The World Bank Group (WBG) is supporting the Berlin Process and the Trieste Declaration of the WB6 and the EU in the establishment of a regional mechanism to coordinate policies with the goal of increasing investment flows as well as firm level investment leads and commitments within the six Western Balkan economies (WB6) (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia (FYROM), Montenegro, Serbia). The six economies have undertaken to identify and eliminate the main obstacles derived from regulations, measures or governmental actions that prevent or hinder the expansion of foreign direct investment within the region.Read More
Conference on Presentation of the EITI 2016 Report and Promotion of Transparency in Natural Resources Utilization in Albania
The Albanian Secretariat of Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) organized on February 28th, 2018 a Conference on “Presentation of the EITI 2016 Report and Promotion of Transparency in the Natural Resources Utilization in Albania”. The publication of the EITI 2016 Annual Report which aims at promoting Transparency in the Governance of Natural Resources in Albania, marks the conclusion of the National Secretariat’s annual activity and it is the result of the cooperation between MSG and Interest Groups. FIAA-s Executive Director, present in this Conference delivered a Message on the importance of the Transparency and Accountability of the use of Natural Resources of the Country as an important factor for the attraction of the Foreign Investors.Read More
Investment Council discusses the Functioning of the E-Permits Platform in the Framework of the Deregulation Reform
Albanian Investment Council held on 13th of February a Meeting chaired by the Minister of Finance and Economy, Mr Arben Ahmetaj. In the agenda of the meeting was the presentation of the main findings of the Secretariat on the functioning of the e-Permits Platform, as part of the Deregulation Reform, as well as the launching of the process for the preparation of the new unified law on investments by the International Finance Corporation (IFC).Read More
On February 13th, the appointed FIAA representatives in the Multi-Stakeholder Group of Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI) met with the Head of Albanian EITI Secretariat, Mr. Ardit Kamberi .
The aim of the meeting was to discuss on the perspectives of the objectives of EITI Secretariat and the role of the Private Sector in the process.
Mr. Kamberi praised the commitment shown by the representatives of the companies in the EITI reporting process in Albania, considering this group as an essential pillar of the substantial triangular cooperation (Government Institutions, Companies and Civil Society) in the activity of the Albanian EITI.
The novelty of 2016 EITI’s report is the inclusion of the Energy sector in the EITI reporting process, reconfirming the comprehensive nature of the process in the exploitation of natural resources.Read More
FIAA’s Chairman has been officially appointed as a Business Member in the Albanian Investment Council for 2018 year
FIAA’s Chairman, for the third time has been officially appointed as a Business Member in the Albanian Investment Council. Investment Council is a platform aiming to support the creation of business enabling environments by promoting better diagnosis of investment climate problems and improved policy design and by strengthening the position of reformers within governments.Read More
Very recently, FIAA launched the second edition of the White Book Albania 2017-2021. The launching took place during the Yearly Ceremony FIAA holds at the beginning of each year. Unlike every year, this time the launching was organized in full cooperation with the Minister of State for Protection of Entrepreneurship in Albania, a newly created institution in support of business. This event brought together a large part of the Foreign Business Community in Albania, representatives of the diplomatic bodies along with several representatives of the state institutions in the country.
White Book’s launching was among the most important events the foreign business community has organized. White Book is a Document which is prepared by the Foreign Investors Association of Albania at the start of each Governing mandate of the Government of Albania. This Document gives an overview of the current situation of the legislative framework and addresses the most common issues faced and communicated by FIAA members in a number of fields such as corporate law, tax Law, Mining, Hydrocarbons and Energy laws as well as specific sectorial issues. It also treats is deep a significant part of the existing legal framework with the main aim to removing unneeded barriers and make the business environment in Albania easier.Read More
“We want to strengthen the role of the ombudsman for all entrepreneurs operating in our country”.
FIAA: What are your objectives and priorities as Minister of Entrepreneurship, a newly created Institution in Albania?
Mrs. Qato: The mission of the Minister of State for the Protection of Entrepreneurship consists in the reduction of the existing gap between entrepreneurship and the public administration, by influencing in the creation of an adequate environment so that enterprises can work at their best capacities and increase their profit.
My role as a government ombudsman will result in the direct solution of the addressed complaints by various entrepreneurs. However, above all, my office will work for the removal of those administrative and corruptive barriers for which the government has already launched a deep reform of deregulation and we also plan on restructuring the inspectorates and government agencies that co-operate with enterprises.
In case of problems or miscommunication, our office mediates between any central or local institution in the country and the entrepreneur that claims an injustice. By defending the interest of enterprises through technical and legal advice, we aim at promoting the synergy of all parties and the interaction between business and government.
Are you planning any new initiatives to be implemented to meet your objectives?
We want to strengthen the role of the ombudsman of entrepreneurship through the legal initiative to establish two mechanisms that I consider to be highly important for all entrepreneurs operating in our country.
Firstly we have already sent to the government our request to transfer the responsibility for the organization and functioning of the National Economic Council and the technical secretariat under the direct responsibility of the Minister of State for the Protection of Entrepreneurship.
We want to reorganize the country’s highest economic council as a discussion forum, in which experts and policy makers can create a constructive debate and review legal proposals affecting the economy and the entrepreneurial environment, in order to increase the role of entrepreneurship in the regulation of the environment legal rights in each of the areas where they operate.
Secondly, we aim the construction of a new mechanism for the mediation of conflicts stemming from violations of the conditions of public contracts. Our mediation will be above all parties and will serve as an instrument for assessing contractual terms and conditions in order to avoid a litigation process for settling contractual disputes.
What measures are you expecting to take to improve the environment for foreign investors in Albania? What more do you think can be done to improve business conditions?
Improving business conditions in the country is a major challenge and a big responsibility of the entire government and the Office of the Minister of State for Enterprise Protection undoubtedly has a very important role for governmental coordination. We plan to regulate the environment of doing business by creating enough space for a competitive economy without barriers and bureaucratic delays, positive fiscal policies that have an impact on the growth of the country’s economy, by providing security to any foreign or domestic investor who wants to invest or re-invest their capitals in our country.
We are continuing our communication with many local and foreign investors who require our intervention to solve their problems. First of all we are pursuing step by step in each and every way the problems presented by the subjects in order to understand where the main issues lie, what is the most recurrent problem that harms entrepreneurship in Albania. Recently, in full cooperation with the entrepreneurs and their stakeholders, we introduced to the government the first package from the venture with suggestions and correction proposals, which will affect the business climate in the country.
What would be your message to the whole Business Community in Albania for a strong bilateral Partnership?
I invite all the investors operating in our country, whether foreign or domestic, to have trust in us and contact us for every problem that they may have. My staff and me are at complete disposal to offer assistance and track everyday problems that they may face regarding public administration. We are open to any cooperation, or proposal offering concrete suggestions on the correction of the legal framework. My office is at the service of any entrepreneur in our country and we act in the defense of any unjustly violated interests. The Albanian government considers entrepreneurs as partners and their indisputable role in the economic development of the country requires a proactive approach and co-governance together!