The First Regional Economic and Regional Development Forum was organized by CRLDS and EAR-EAR in cooperation with Vlora Municipality, Vlora Region, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the University of Vlora, with the support of the Flemish Government. It was held in the hall of the Municipality of Vlora, in the presence of the mayor of Vlora, Mr. Dritan LELI.

The first forum for regional and local economic development took place after the Territorial Administrative Reform in Albania and its initial effects, as well as the start of the second phase of decentralization reform in Albania: the Reform of Territorial Regionalization in Albania.

Our tour of City Meetings and Conferences, an integral part of the Forum, in four districts of the country: Regions: Tirana, Elbasan, Berat and Vlora, provided us with opportunities to experience and explore the best experiences and practices that show how economic development regional and local, can be considered as a tool to efficiently implement the new regional and local development agenda at local and regional level

In this forum were active and active contributors: Olvi Merkaj, director of the cabinet of the chairman of the Vlora District Council, Chairman of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Vlora Mr. Arben Breshani, Agron Gjipalit, Secretary of the City Council, Pedagogues from Vlora University Independence, Regional Economic Development Agency staff Nr. 4, Vlora Youth Center, representatives from public administration, students and many civil society organizations.

Mrs. Hoxhaj opened the debate of the Forum with the announcement that the reorganization of the municipalities in the country from 400 to 63 created the possibility of a powerful regional economic development tool in Albania, which should be exploited.

The Mayor of Vlora, Dritan Leli, welcomed the AER-EAR in Vlora and emphasized the new task of enlarged municipalities, currently possessing the tools necessary to elaborate a realistic policy on regional development.

Mrs. Oncioiu presented the possibilities that could be realized by the European regional development funds.

The other two presentations were made by Mrs. Anila Hitaj, representative of the Vlora Region Council and Mrs. Zamira Agalliu President and Legambiente Vlorë.

Then continued with the meeting in the Vlora District Council, where he met with the Chairman Mr. Sadr Danaj and the District Council staff.

In the afternoon, "Forum for Regional Development" moved to the premises of the Vlora Youth Center with two lectures related to different aspects from the young Albanian speakers.

M. Louis Delcart later completed a lecture on Entrepreneurship that was highly praised by the new audience

The forum was preceded by city conferences held in the cities of Tirana, Elbasan and Berat.

The first joint conference in Albania of EAR-AER and CRLDS Albania

11 October 2016 Tirana

On the second day of the Fact Finding Mission in Albania of EAR-AER and CRLDs Albania, a conference was organized on the subject: 

"Is a European regional approach useful when it comes to economic development and employment?"

The conference was organized at the premises of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Tirana (CCIT) by CRLDS with the financial support of the Flemish Government.

Present at this meeting were representatives of the District Council of Tirana, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Tirana, the Union of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Albania, the Qark and the Municipality of Tirana, the Association of Councils of the Regions of Albania, by CRLDS Albania, the University of Tirana (Faculty of Natural Sciences), the Territorial Planning Agency, etc.

Conference on the topic: "Is a European regional approach useful when it comes to economic development and employment?"

October 12, 2016

On the third day of the EAR-EAR fact-finding mission in Albania, board members came to Elbasan for a second mission conference on "Is the regional European approach useful when it comes to economic development and employment?"

The conference was organized by CRLDS Albania and the European Academy of Regions in cooperation with Elbasan University "Aleksandër Xhuvani".

The event was held at the multimodal center of the university "Aleksandër Xhuvani" of this city.

At the attentive audience were present representatives from the University "Aleksandër Xhuvani", Elbasan, Faculty of Economics and Medical Faculty, District Council of Elbasan, Tax Administration in Albania and member of the Board of Directors of CRLDS, Agency the economic development of Elbasan, the multimodal Center of the University and the AER-AER team.

In the afternoon at Elbasan's Faculty of Economics, Aleksander Xhuvani, Mr. Louis Delcart gave a lecture on regional approach as a methodology to stimulate social and economic development in Europe. The audience was composed of staff of professors and professors at the Faculty of Economics of the University of Elbasan. The public praised the emergence of new aspects such as Credel to Credel and Cleantech as new opportunities in business development, the many opportunities in the internet application of things and the co-operation of the triple spiral in regional development.

The third conference in Albania of EAR-AER and CRLDS in Albania.

13/10/2016, Berat

The fourth day of the fact-finding mission in Albania brought the team of EAR-AER and CRLDS Albania to Berat. 

The team was hosted in the premises of the Berat District Prefect.
The public contained the staff of the Regional Council, the staff of the Municipality and the County Prefect, DAR, etc. among other things we can mention the Deputy Mayor of the city, Mr. Clirim Brisku, Deputy Mayor of Berat, Berat Deputy Mayor, Mrs. Teuta Mucogllava, Deputy Mayor of the District Council, Mr. Kastriot Rrapaj, Secretary General of the Prefect of Berat, Mr. Redin Kusta.

 Ms. Luiza Hoxhaj, at the opening of the meeting talked about the objectives of the mission of finding the facts and highlighting the problems of regional development in Albania in general and the goals of the Berat meeting in particular. She also spoke about the objectives of the meeting, why this meeting was conceived with this composition, the role of the actors involved in this meeting in the development of the territory and the reasons why EAR-AER is present in Albania and presented the agenda of the meeting day.

In this meeting, the senior representatives of EAR-AER (Board of Directors of the Academy) held three presentations:

Mr.Neacsu presented the CRLDS Center as its official partner and Mrs. Luiza Hoxhaj as representative of EAR-EAR in Albania and several other countries of the region (Montenegro, Macedonia, Kosovo, Bosnia and Herzegovina.) Also Mr. Neascu introduced EAR-EAR, EAR-AER objectives, composition, mission and activity He highlighted the role that EAR-EAR could play as coach trainer in EU project funding as a partner for cross-border projects and trainer for drafting proposals in the framework of a call for proposals.

Mrs. Oncioiu has given concrete examples of public works in her city of Constanta, benefiting residents, local businesses, and attracting tourists. She also insisted that already important funds are available to Albania at the pre-accession stage and that good proposals must be tailored to thinking in order to be eligible for EU funds. She also insisted that at this stage of pre-access the local government's financial contribution to the entire proposal is quite limited.

Mayors and County Council Presidents in the meeting reacted with great enthusiasm to the proposal for co-operation and guaranteed that EAR-EAR and its CRLDS partner will be referred to training sessions on EU subsidies or as trainer to write proposals stable.

Mr. Delcart has finally completed explaining briefly the philosophy of regional approach by highlighting the success of elastic regions. Elasticity lies primarily in co-operation between the parties, the authorities for co-ordination and attracting financial resources, civil society for bottom-up suggestions filled up with the needs of local residents, the largest businesses in their quest for the assessment and fulfillment of good citizenship and universities and technical colleges in the role and research and their educational role for new opportunities.

After the meeting with local actors whose activity had an impact on regional and local economic development, representatives of EAR-AER and CRLDS moved to the gymnasium "Babë Duda Karbunara", where they were expected by the director of gymnasium Z., who made a summary of the excellent results of this national elite gymnasium. Was expressed the pleasure of having such a representation at this gymnasium and expressed the will to welcome events of this nature as well as exchanges of students, experiences and experiences with their European counterparts.

Mr.Delcart was later invited to give a lecture to the last year students of Gymnasium Babe Dude Karbunara in central Berat about entrepreneurship.He was accompanied in this event by Mrs. Luiza Hoxhaj.

Both teachers (both English and IT) and 42 students attended the lecture on "ENTERPRENEURSHIP, DRIVING FORCE IN A DEVELOPING ECONOMY".