Promoting local economic development and the creation of employment opportunities for young people and adults.

GLOBAL OPPORTUNITIES ALBANIA in collaboration with Hanns Seidel fondation has organized in 4th of March 2016 round tables for the  public employees of local governments in the cities of Mallakastra, Vora, Kamez, Klos, Lezha and Shkodra; Students from public universities; High school teachers in the respective cities; Students of vocational schools;
Newly returned emigrants; Representatives of various businesses that operate in the respective municipalities;
Expert employees of municipalities as well as professors.The main purpose of these roundtables is to bring together, in the same platform, the unemployed equipped with new ideas which can incite change,  returned emigrants, local administration employees, , different businesses that operate in municipalities  and representatives of the educational sector of these cities. The generation of the entrepreneurial ideas between different actors of the cities, where education and training through the new ages and through new open discussions as an important element to consider is which.
The overall goal is to generate  new employment opportunities – with  immediate effect - by promoting  hope and creating opportunity, trying
 prevent migration is happening recently in our country.

 As part of the project entitled "Knowledge Transfer" for the public administration, is
a 6-day tour of seminars conducted in the municipalities of Mallakastra, Vora, Kamza, Lezha and Shkodra with the topic “Effective Local Governance”

On March 4th, 2016 in the Municipality of Mallakastra
On March 7th, 2016 the Municipality of Vora
On March 9th, 2016 the Municipality of Kamza
On March 10th, 2016 in the Municipality of Klos
On March 11th, 2016 in the Municipality of Lezha
On March 17th, 2016 in the Municipality of Shkodra

In this round of workshops, run by representatives of Global Opportunitites Albania were several mayors fromt he respective cities were present in order to support this initiative organized by GOA with the cooperation of the Hanns Seidel Foundation.

These round-table workshops were moderated by Msc. Alida Karakushi urban economic policy specialist; with the following the main speakers: Msc. Silvi Jan, Msc. Ela Goxhaj; Msc. Dashnor Poci, experts in different fields such as urban policy, tourism, socio-urban policy, representatives of of the forest department, representatives of hospital departments, local government experts, director of the municipal police, civil emergencies director, representatives of different businesses as well as the representative of departments of various municipalities. Important issues regarding
effective governance of local authorities were discussed.

A feasibility study was carried out in order to best achieve the goals of the rountable organization and to promote constructive feedback between participants and experts. There was a synergy between municipalities, where in each of them discussed
the issue of immigration and migration and examples of local business recoveries were brought up.

Research opportunities and methods were discussed and taught to the participants.
Management training will be offered in future projects.

These activities addressed the following topics:

- Decreasing unemployment in these areas
- How to gain higher profits from oil companies which are currently not
- The whole area has strong potential for cultural tourism because of its many ancient ruins but natural tourism  may have priority as well as it may give a strong and rapid impetus to the economy of the households.
(Municipality of Mallakastra)

- A method that the municipality of Vora can attract other businesses in the area while considering its strategic position between the most important cities in the country but also between the country's two main gates as Rinas Airport and the Port of Durres.
-Given the zone should have a great combination between areas of industrial development but also development of tourism in rural areas of the municipality, which have strong potential, such as forests as well as a network of lakes in different villages this represents a very good opportunity for the local economy but also makes the municipality more well-know in this general area.
( Municipality of Vora)
-Given the rapid development of this municipality in recent years but also its large population, the way it can be competitive with Tirana in attracting various businesses, by giving them tax breaks and offering the labor force that the municipality owns .
- Ways that the municipality can attract foreign direct investment directly from the EU without using the central government as a connecting bridge between the two.
- The population diversity of this municipality, combining people from different regions of the country, is an asset which can be used toward culinary tourism and handicraft products.
-Another idea for the development of tourism in the area is the reactivization of a former mine, the Valias mine, as an industrial attraction of the former Communist era, projects that in some EU countries have been very successful.
( Municipality of Kamez)

-Ways that the huge mineral industries can invest in the area by creating specific centers where the minerals are collected and local authorities play the role of mediation for the sale of the minerals.
- The area Is very rich in history and boasts numerous archaeological remains as well as
many natural riches including karstic lakes, which are of considerable potential for a promising future of tourism in the area.
- The opportunities that the Arber Street will bring for local businesses is considerable as it will be built only 15 km away from Klos and only an hour away by Tirana.
( Municipality of Klos)

- Priority is being given to cultural and natural tourism.
- How to be competitive with the municipality of Durres for the seasonal summer tourists, where the municipality of Lezha’s proximity to Kosovo is a huge advantage, being that Kosovo is a country which offers great clientele for tourism.
- Ways in which summer tourism can be efectively combined with culinary and cultural turism, given that Lezha has great potential in these directions.
-The municipality is in current cooperation with municipalities in Italy and has gained some experience as well as garnered some support in the areas of staff training.
(Municipality of Lezha)

- The city has a good combination of structures that make up the city as a whole, something which was observed by the broad participation of residents and stakeholders.
-How to best interlink the multiple treasures that Shkodra offers, making it one of the  special municipalities where you can find all the elements of tourism combined in one place.
- How its  great potential can be published in different countries and become more popular nationally.
- How a family can train a member (mostly young) with basic English, something which can facilitate tourism but can also positively affect the economy of the family.
-How each family (those who are known primarily for family tourism such as in Theth, Boge, Razem, Velipoje, etc.) can prepare a room to be used for individual tourists.
-How to advertise these services through websites as well as Facebook or Twitter.



At each meeting participants were offered 2 coffee breaks and lunch. The participants were distributed file materials, blocks and pens.

Objectives  and conclusions reached: In general, the meetings were a very good opportunity for the participants / community to confront reality and be faced with new options in employment as well as lifestyle in the areas they reside. The experts offered concrete ideas based on examples of neighboring countries such as Greece and Italy. This brought many ideas to the room thinking everyone to the situation they are in and above all for what provides their area which may have the efficiency of the current situation.

The academic and  archeology researchers of the municipality of Mallakaster decided that all the data they own should be placed in a database where, in the future with the help of the municipality, it can reach local businesses and also provide the way of publishing a book on the archaeological heritage of the area. Also the staff of the municipality promised that next month, a website will open where, in addition to the activities of the municipality, every detail of the book to be published will be exposed.
A Facebook page will be made available where pictures and information from the archaelogical site  will be published.

The municipality of Vora staff promised that it will publish in their official website several spaces which will be made available for rent to local businesses, and their resective prices will be published.
The local residents and various businesses owners will try to set a date to organize a feast in Vora in which they will be able to expose local farm fresh products, and also locally-produced wine, while also encourganing efforts to stalle an open kitchen where families from different villages will cook their various specialties.

The municipality of Kamza focused more on the priority that should be given to the EU project proposals, and made promises to support its planning process by establishing studio facilities towards this end. Another initiative is that of the rehabilitation of a public space, currently not in use, which will eventually return it to serve their citizens. From the very start of the building process, open tents will be made available on the construction site which will display various handmade products made by the locals. It was also agreed that the municipality will conduct a competition for the special products where prizes will be won. This kind of activity will serve to incentivize the residents to produce and promote products which may not have held any value for them until now.

The municipality of Klos will hold a competition in the city high school for the person or group that will create the website for the municipality. The competition will be supervised by the school teachers, while the sum made available for this project will be 50 000 ALL. This will also be a stimulus for the activation of the city youth. Some small local businesses  pledged that they will contribute to improve the basic infrastructure for some tourist sites located near the city, provide road signage, creation of trails, improving road access, etc.

The municipality of Lezha committed to building a database for all the apartments available for rent in Shengjin, which can offer accurate information for tourists who want to visit this beautiful coast. Several local businessmen will make efforts to influence in travel agencies in Kosovo for the promotion and advertising of the region but also the entire coastline beyond. The Municipality of Lezha will soon also offer the city castle as a tourist site concession, which aims to increase visitors in these parts.

The municipality of Shkodra is focused on tourism development as it has much diversity to offer in that area. This municipality also plans to make a certain amount of its internal budget  available for promotion in the Balkan region and Italy. The travel company Landways will include the Shkodra tourism office in the "In Your Pocket" guide, which will make it very popular not only for domestic market but also internationally (as this guide is available online for the duration of a year). Different businesses will privately invest in advertsing their services in the print brochure, a guide that will advertise tourism in the areas of Shkodra, and  will be offered free of cost in customs entry  points for all foreign tourists entering Albania. Participants from municipalities bordering with Montenegro promised to be working during the days we put these two entry points, in the period from June to September.

All participants were invited to participate in the larger conference which will take place in April of 2016 on the theme of effective local governance, an activity that will lead to new ideas and self-esteem for all the stakeholders that make up a local government.