Closing Thoughts on Women, Peace, Security Closeout

I’m pleased to share with you our final project newsletter, bringing a successful close to the one hundred and five months of PLGP’s work in Albania […]

Youth Boards: Empowering Youth for a Better Future

Although youth in Albania are recognized as agents for social change, they continue to be largely excluded from local governance and face a daunting lack of […]

Women’s Small Business Program Paves the Way for Transformation

With a total area of 37.18 km2, the Municipality of Kamza is nestled into the capital Tirana. A medium-sized city with 125,632 inhabitants, Kamëz is 100 […]

Formalization, Commodities, and Increased Access Empower Women Producers

USAID’s Planning and Local Governance Project (PLGP) conducted the first-ever Gender-Sensitive Value Chain Analyses in Albania in 2019. Throughout this process, different barriers to women’s inclusion […]

Strategic Fiscal Planning Empowers Local Governments to Increase Citizen Support

Budget Reallocation Provides Access to Food Aid in Times of Crisis A government must be responsive to the needs of its citizens, throughout times of crisis […]

Youth Programming Builds Resiliency and Cultivates Leaders

Youth in Albania unfortunately encounter aggression, violence, and other risk factors for various types of abuse in many homes and communities. Increased awareness of risk factors, […]

#YouAreNotAlone – Opening the Door for Victims of Domestic Abuse

As the world reacted to newly implemented health and safety measures, some families in Albania became more at-risk for a sadly familiar, insidious danger of domestic […]

Building Bridges: Reflecting on the Past and Looking Ahead towards Continued Growth

Anyone familiar with the phenomenon will tell you: Preventing and countering violent extremism (P/CVE) is complicated. In Albania, factors creating violent extremism have shown to be […]

#YouAreNotAlone – Opening the Door for Victims of Domestic Abuse

Increasing Awareness as We Shelter in Place Once-bustling streets have fallen silent, and Albania’s lively café culture has ground to a halt. Amidst the global pandemic, […]

Women’s Small Business Program uses Digital Delivery to Overcome COVID-19 Restrictions

The Municipality of Kamëz is a suburb of the capital Tirana and is centrally located within Albania. A medium-sized city with 125,632 inhabitants, Kamëz is 100 […]

USAID engages at the local level to strengthen communities and build resiliency.

As the world adjusts to a new normal amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, families throughout Albania are desperately seeking basic aid. In response to confirmed coronavirus cases […]

Gender-Sensitive Value Chain Analysis in Albania

By Erald Lamja Women are present in all Albanian value chains and markets carrying out important functions. Although both the public and private sectors have numerous […]

Supporting Women’s Inclusion and Value Chain Development in Albania

A Guide for Practitioners and Interested Stakeholders By Erald Lamja As a result of laws, policies, and programs, Albania has seen improvements in various aspects related […]

National Conference “Unlocking Potential: Gender-Sensitive Value Chain Analysis to Develop Better Economic and Development Policy and Programs”

By Erald Lamja On March 5th, the USAID Planning and Local Government Project (PLGP), in partnership with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MoARD), organized […]

Supporting Women’s Economic Empowerment in Value Chains

By Erald Lamja Economic growth, and the markets that enable that growth, are one of the well-documented drivers in reducing poverty. Markets are the main means […]

Municipalities and citizens’ safety

Nineteen municipalities across Albania receive basic training in tackling root causes to prevent radicalization and violent extremism. By Robert Korkuti and Diamanta Vito Municipalities today are […]

Political Will to Achieve Greater Equality

Mayor of Bulqiza commits to work towards gender equality on International Women’s Day By Monika Kocaqi and Dolly Wittberger Equality of women and men is a […]

Youth empowerment through self-defense programs

By Laureta Memo Youth in Albania often encounter aggression and violence and are exposed to other risk factors leading to various types of abuse. However, an […]

Empowering women through local incentives

Partner municipalities approve groundbreaking reduction in local tariffs for women- and youth-owned startups. By Diamanta Vito and Erald Lamja Increased agency amplifies the abilities of women […]

Reforms in Albania informed by Regional Best Practices

By Elton Stafa Albanian local governments face many challenges as they work to fulfill their responsibilities in education, social protection, and healthcare. Key obstacles include inconsistent […]

Early Childhood Education at the Intersection of Municipal Finance and Governance

By Elton Stafa PLGP’s recently finalized policy paper: “Early Childhood Education at the Intersection of Albanian Municipal Finance and Governance,” aims to improve Albanian policymakers’ understanding […]

Financing social protection – the key to improving quality of life for the most vulnerable

By Elton Stafa In 2016, Albanian local governments became solely responsible for providing protection and social services to some of the most disadvantaged groups and individuals […]

Cross-Border Cooperation to Support Vulnerable Communities

Representatives from Albanian Municipalities and Civil Society Organizations share best practices with Northern Macedonia counterparts – by Robert Korkuti Social, economic, and physical isolation are some […]

Strengthening community resilience – saying No to violence against women

By Monika Kocaqi and Dolly Wittberger Violence against women is a violation of women’s human rights. Its different forms, including domestic violence, cause serious short- and […]

Early Childhood Education in Albania at the Intersection of Municipal Finance and Governance

This paper situates the decentralization of education responsibilities to local governments in Albania against broader European trends. It then analyzes how preschools are currently managed and […]

Guide to Doing Business in Cerrik

Cerrik is a unique community in a diverse region. The town is a model of goodwill, wisdom, reliability, tolerance, and cooperation. It is a place of […]

Guide for Practitioners and Interested Stakeholders for Women Inclusion and Value Chain Development in Albania

This Guide aims to support more gender-responsive approaches to value chain analysis development and hence to economic growth in Albania. The Guide represents a useful resource […]

Briefing Paper: Gender-Sensitive Approaches in Value Chain Development

The objective of this paper is to outline the opportunities for Albania in developing and implementing gender-sensitive value chain and market development approaches within its ‘toolbox’ […]

Gender-Sensitive Value Chain Analysis in the Municipalities of Bulqiza, Cerrik, Dibra, Kamza, Pogradec, and Librazhd

The main objective of this analysis is firstly identify the main sectors in these partner municipalities that provide opportunities for economic growth and development and assess […]

Guide on Prevention of Violent Extremism

This guide was developed by the Countering Violent Extremism Center (CVE) and the USAID Planning and Local Governance Project. It is the first document that helps […]

For engaged, informed and safer citizens

Are you informed on radicalization and violent extremism? Why do people get radicalized? How can you identify radicalized individuals? What is the main state institution against […]

Municipality of Bulqiza – Flyer for Reporting Domestic Violence

The Municipality of Bulqiza established in 2017 the Coordinated Referral Mechanism on cases of domestic violence to help and encourage women and girls of this municipality […]

Women Inclusion and Value Chain Development in Albania – Guide for Practitioners and Interested Stakeholders

This Guide aims to support more gender-responsive approaches to value chain analysis development and hence to economic growth in Albania. The Guide represents a useful resource […]

Women’s Economic Empowerment

Building a Grassroots Approach with Municipal Support In 2019 the PLGP began to focus on one of the pillars of the Women, Peace and Security framework […]

For Effective Municipalities, Active Communities, Safer Citizens

Front-line actors utilizing a Guide to address causes of radicalization and violent extremism In the same manner that the central government develops national policies and coordinates […]

Asset Management – The Art of Balancing Performance, Risk and Cost

Water utility companies are under more pressure than ever to improve their overall performance and cost efficiency. The aging system makes it increasingly difficult for water […]

Albania’s New Roadmap to Strengthen Local Government

Updating the Decentralization Action Plan The PLGP is supporting the Ministry of Interior (MoI) to update and extend the Action Plan of the National Cross-Cutting Strategy […]

Transparent Government Is Good Government

Facilitating Citizen Advocacy Efforts and Participation In Decision-Making We at the PLGP strongly believe that transparency is a key element for good and accountable government. In […]

Better Policies Lead to Better Services

By Elton Stafa Preschool education finance reform, creating a more inclusive and resilient society Early childhood education is particularly important for improving the educational opportunities and […]

Intergovernmental Dialogue and Consultation Lead to Better Policies

Reinforcing Dialogue on Local Government Finance Reform An open and inclusive dialogue based on timely, accurate and reliable data between the national government and local self-governments […]

A Mayor’s Role in Economic Development

By Peter Clavelle Governments (national and subnational) and citizens, in countries in all phases of the development process, are recognizing the paramount importance of sustainable development. […]

From Hope to Goals

PLGP supports the Water Utility of Saranda to develop for the first time a Five-Year Business Plan and a Performance Improvement Action Plan When the PLGP […]

Strengthening Future Communities through the Youth of Today

Youth in Albania are a prominent influencing force in society today. Despite this, they still lack recognition from local governments and are therefore unable to reach […]

Guide to Doing Business in Berat

Berat is a city with plenty potentials for all entrepreneurs who wish to expand their business. As part of the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage list, its […]

How to Open and Develop e Business in Lushnje

Lushnja is a city that offers many opportunities for any entrepreneur who wants to grow his business. Home to the country’s largest agriculture and livestock development, […]

Fier’s Guide to Doing Business

Fier, more than any other city, needs to have a guide that will accommodate any and all issues relative to business and local development in our […]

PLGP Newsletter No. 12

The USAID Planning and Local Governance Project published its 12th newsletter. Readers will find updated information on activities and publications. Articles include Preschool education finance reform, creating […]

Papers and studies on Local Finances

Transforming Lives Through Better Services

By Erald Lamja and Diamanta Vito –  This summer the Municipality of Elbasan began interventions in improving the irrigation and drainage systems across its territory. Mechanical […]

Bulqiza Youth Board, A Mechanism to Revitalize Community Life in Bulqiza

By Edison Balla –  Bulqiza is a town in northeastern Albania. Like a considerable number of small municipalities, this town “suffers” from scarce activism and lack of […]

The Importance of Local Safety Councils and the Role of Youth as Promoters of Change

By Robert Korkuti –  Confronted by the need for better coordination between state, non-state, and civil society actors, several municipalities established and formalized Local Councils for […]

Local Detailed Planning: From Design to Development Opportunities

By Ledio Allkja dhe Rudina Toto –  Territorial planning has evolved in Albania in recent years to make a qualitative leap forward towards integrated spatial development. […]

Improving the Quality of Tourism Offer

By Erald Lamja dhe Nevila Popa –  Berat Economic Development Advisory Council dedicates efforts to the specific demand of the Asian tourism market Berat is an […]

Supporting Municipalities in Accessing Funds for Strategic Projects

By Ledio Allkja dhe Rudina Toto –  Preparing successful fundable projects for support by financial or donor institutions remains a challenge for Albanian municipalities. Effective projects […]

Municipality Delivers on Promises

Nga Erald Lamja –  On December 9, 2018, Patos Mayor Balilaj handed over the keys of 10 apartments to women in need. “I have struggled my […]

Korça Study Tour Serves as a Knowledge-Sharing Opportunity for Staff of Other Water Utilities Across Albania

By Valu Add Management Services and Erald Lamja –  The water sector in Albania faces a pivotal moment. The Government of Albania (GoA), in line with […]

Support to Reduce Non-Revenue Water in Albania

By Valu Add Management Services –  The Government of Albania has identified improvement of water supply and sewerage services as one of its five crucial pillars […]

Energetic and Motivated

By Silvana Meko and Erald Lamja –  Technical Capacity-Building of New Recruits in the General Department of Property Tax Property tax reform constitutes a major development […]

Better Systems – Better Services

By Erald Lamja and Genc Radovicka –  Thanks to the support of USAID, the Municipality of Elbasan can now issue accurate and fair property tax bills, […]

USAID-Funded Tax Administration Systems as Instruments to Increase Own Source Revenues

By Erald Lamja and Genc Radovicka –  “Familiarization with the various reporting instruments provided by the TAIS system facilitates the work on tax administration and local […]

Advancing Fiscal Decentralization Reform

Nga Elton Stafa –  Albanian municipalities to receive for the first-time shares of the revenues collected from the National Tax on Personal Income The USAID’s Planning […]

The Law on Annual Budget for 2019 Is Approved. Any Implications?

By Elton Stafa –  On December 4th, Parliament approved the Law on the Annual Budget for 2019. The Ministry of Finance and Economy (MoFE) highlighted that […]

Intergovernmental Dialogue and Consultation Lead to Better Policies

By Bekim Murati and Elton Stafa –  An open and inclusive dialogue between the national government and local self-governments is key to improving both service delivery […]

USAID Leads Efforts to Improve the Quality of Preschool Education in Albania

By Elton Stafa and Erald Lamja –  “Equal access to relevant, quality education creates pathways for greater economic growth, improved health outcomes, sustained democratic governance, and […]

Vora’s Increased Own Source Revenues Provide Improved Local Services

By Erald Lamja and Silvana Meko –  As a result of steady increase of OSR, the Municipality of Vora has made significant investments in upgrading its […]

Building Skills for Labor Market Needs

By Erald Lamja and Nevila Popa –  With almost 16,000 families, the Municipality of Elbasan has some of the largest numbers of poor families that live […]

Vlora Municipal Senior Officials Trained on FMC

This week, the USAID’s Planning and Local Governance Project (PLGP) Decentralization and Public Finance Expert, in cooperation with experts from the Ministry of Finance and Economy […]

Building Local Economic Development Capacities

The USAID Planning and Local Governance Project (PLGP) supports partner municipalities on Building Local Economic Development Capacities. On Thursday, September 20, 2018, some 25 municipal officials […]

USAID Training on Tax Administration through Use of ICT

The USAID’s Planning and Local Governance Project supports partner municipalities to increase own source revenues through tax and finance information systems. The USAID/PLGP-designed Tax Administration Information […]

New Staff Eager to Use Skill Set on Property Taxation

In January 2018, the Ministry of Finance and Economy (MoFE) initiated work on establishing the national fiscal cadaster which will facilitate the implementation of the recently-adopted […]

Local Security Council Established in Bulqiza

The USAID Planning and Local Governance Project (PLGP) supported the creation and formalization of the Local Security Council of Bulqiza and facilitated its first meeting. The […]

Empowering Bulqiza Youth Board

The USAID Planning and Local Governance Project (PLGP) supports the youth groups in Bulqiza and Cerrik through inclusive, creative, and community-strengthening events and afterschool extra-curricular activities. The […]

Case Study on Preschool Finance Reform

Preschool education is the costliest, and arguably the most important, of the new functions that have been recently decentralized to local governments in Albania. PLGP experts visited […]

Reconstruction of Mbreshtani Irrigation and Drainage Canal

USAID keeps the promise. In August 2018, the USAID Planning and Local Governance Project (PLGP) delivered the Technical Design Project of the Mbreshtani Irrigation and Drainage […]

Training on “Advocacy and Lobbying” with the Youth Board in Cerrik

USAID’s Planning and Local Governance Project (PLGP) trained 20 members of the Cerrik Youth Board on the topics of advocacy and lobbing. The training aimed at […]

P/CVE Awareness Training in Cerrik and Bulqiza

Responding to the request of the CVE National Center, PLGP is supporting the efforts to build awareness on violent extremism across Albania. The Project conducted a […]

USAID Project 10th Newsletter

The USAID Planning and Local Governance Project published its 10th newsletter. Readers will find updated information on activities and publications. Articles include property tax reform, fostering […]

Financing the New Own Functions of Local Governments in Albania

The purpose of this publication is to explain the most important challenges that need to be addressed in order to move to the unconditional funding of […]

Skills for Labor Market Needs

Thanks to USAID assistance, AlbChrome and the Elbasan’s “Ali Myftiu” Vocational School are collaborating to establish a metallurgy/foundry class with at least 20 students of the […]

20th Anniversary of Kuçova CAP

The Municipality of Kuçova and USAID celebrate the 20th anniversary of Kuçova Citizen Advisory Panel (CAP). Established with USAID support in 1998, Kuçova’s Citizen Advisory Panel […]

Enhance Skills of Urban Planners

The USAID’s Planning and Local Governance Project (PLGP) and the National Territorial Planning Agency (NTPA) organized on May 10-11 and May 15-16 two round tables focused […]

Supporting and Empowering the Bulqiza Youth Board

April 27-28, 2018 - USAID’s Planning and Local Governance Project (PLGP) held a two-day workshop in Bulqiza with 25 high school students to support the creation […]

Economic Development Advisory Council established in Elbasan

USAID’s Planning and Local Governance Project worked together with municipal officials of Elbasan to prepare the ground for establishing Economic Development Advisory Councils (EDAC), aiming to […]

National Round Table “Law on Local Self-Government Finance – One Year Later”

April 17, 2018 – USAID’s Planning and Local Governance Project, in partnership with the Ministry of Finance and Economy organized on April 17, the national conference […]

Improving local government administration through use of ICT information systems

March 29, 2018 – USAID’s Planning and Local Governance Project organized a workshop with tax and finance experts from our partner municipalities on “Improving local government […]

Action Planning Workshop with the Municipality of Fier

April 4-5, 2018 – USAID’s Planning and Local Governance Project and the Municipality of Fier initiated the process of preparing an action plan to improve services […]

Training on Implementation of New Law on Property Tax

USAID’s Planning and Local Governance Project and Ministry of Finance and Economy are jointly delivering training sessions on the New Methodology on Property Tax on Buildings. […]

Key Achievements

USAID’s Planning and Local Governance Project works both at the national policy level and at the local level to gain full acceptance for the principles of […]

About Us

USAID’s “Planning and Local Governance Project” in Albania (PLGP) has worked at both the national policy level and at the local level since 2012 to promote […]