1 November 2019, Tirana. The National Workshop under the UfM Financial Strategy for Water took place in Tirana focusing on the sustainable financing of water resources management. The meeting highlighted significant financing need and the opportunities to increase operational efficiency and value-for-money of investments. The workshop took into account that the process of EU accession is the strongest driver for reform and investments and helped Albanian authorities to improve alignment of national goals and strategies with regional (UfM) strategies as well as the SDGs and showcase the analytical work carried out in the drinking water supply and sanitation (WSS) sub-sector.
The Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, represented by Sokol DEDJA, Deputy Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, hosted the National Workshop under the UfM Financial Strategy for Water. It was jointly organised by the Union for Mediterranean and the Water Resources Management Agency of Albania and brought together around 50 representatives from Albanian ministries and agencies, EU Delegation in Tirana, European Investment Bank, Austrian Development Agency and other development partners, international experts from Jordan and Morocco, and representatives from municipalities, water utilities and chairs of basin councils, and their respective associations
Gerta Lubonja, General Director of the Water Resources Management Agency, emphasized the importance of water resources management in Albania. Also, she noted the role of the Agency related to transposition and implementation of the EU Water Framework Directive. Almotaz Abadi, Managing Director for Water at the UfM, emphasized the importance of regional cooperation towards sustainable and integrated water management in the UfM region. The UfM Water Agenda will directly contribute to fulfil the requirements under Chapter 27 – Environment under the EU negotiations and to achieve Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6 in the Mediterranean region, as well as several other SDGs. Andrea Vera, Head of the Economic Governance section in the European Union Delegation in Albania, called the Albanian government to come with additional measures for creating the proper conditions to the development of the water sector, starting with the urgent strengthening of the key sector national agencies. He highlighted the large support of the European countries to the sector to bring sustainable benefits to the Albanian citizens.