General National Spatial Plan / Shqipëria 2030

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The General National Spatial Plan (GNSP) provides the strategic reference framework for sustainable territorial development for the next 15 years, in order to ensure balanced economic and social national development, responsible management of natural resources, environmental protection, all while ensuring the rational land use. The GNSP is introduced not only as fulfillment of a legal obligation, but also as a prerequisite to achieving the governmental program objectives to enhance citizens’ welfare and national economic growth by reducing inequalities, strengthening the strategic partnership with neighboring countries and implementation of policies that foster competitiveness of economic sectors, thus ensuring integration in the European Union.

GENERAL NATIONAL

SPATIAL PLAN

FIRST NATIONAL DOCUMENT ON

SPATIAL PLANNING

2015 - 2030


GENERAL NATIONAL

SPATIAL PLAN

FIRST NATIONAL DOCUMENT ON

SPATIAL PLANNING

2015 - 2030

Approved by Council of Ministers Decision No. 881, dated 14/12/2016


This plan was drafted with the valuable contribution of a large number of experts

in various fields of economic and social development, as well as territorial

planning specialists, technicians, public administration employees, professors

and representatives of various academic fields, members of non-profit

organizations, business representatives, local government representatives,

and citizens who contributed, through their active participation in a number of

consultative meetings, to the preparation of the vision for the development of

Albania for the next 15 years. This plan is the result of the joint contribution and

unremitting efforts of the specialists of the National Territorial Planning Agency

(NTPA) and the Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD), which provided their

contribution for about two years to complete this document. Such document

is the first of its kind for our country, introducing an integrated framework of

all the territorial developments incurred to date and setting out a long-term

development and quality model for "Shqipëria 2030".


Head of Process

Eglantina Gjermeni

Minister of Urban Development

Coordinators

Adelina Greca

Director General

National Territoral Planning Agency

Nertil Jole

Director of Territorial Development Policies Directorate

Ministry of Urban Development

Special recognition for his contribution in the drafting of GNP

Hans-Juergen Cassens, GIZ Albania

Team Leader

Anisa Qorri

Director of Territorial Planning Directorate, NTPA

Team

Eleana Beruka, Ismail Broli, Mirzeta Kashnica

Albana Koçollari, Ledio Allkja, Shpendi Balilaj, Ditjon Baboçi, Bledi Dimo, Deni Klosi

Technical Planning Consultants

Angelo D'Urso, international technical urban planning expert

Wilhelm Schulte, planning expert, former Director General of Urban Planning and Landscape,

Ministry of Urban Development and Environment, Hamburg, GIZ

Jan Drews, planning Expert, Director of the Planning Office, Berlin-Brandenburg

Rudina Toto, expert of PLGP programme, USAID

Printed: Shtypshkronja PEGI

ISBN: 978-9928-228-60-4


Preamble

Summarizing a successfully accomplished government

objective in one document naturally gives rise to a sense of

satisfaction and appreciation for whomever engaged in and

gave their contribution in such a historical achievement.

The General National PlanShqipëria 2030” represents

the harmonisation of the integrated approach of urban

development with other strategic sectors such as tourism,

agriculture, energy, transport, housing and other aspects,

which intertwine within the objective of long-term and

sustainable development of the country.

I am honoured to have been responsible of leading this

multifaceted and all-encompassing process, which

concluded with the drafting and approval of the General

National PlanShqipëria 2030” by the National Territorial

Council and the Council of Ministers. This contemporary

document is today one of the pillars that will support the

development of the territory in the next 15 years.

In political terms, the accomplishment of this objective

during our first government mandate marks an important

achievement. This development policy document, which is

prepared for the first time in our country, puts the socioeconomic

development of the country upon sustainable

principles and criteria. It will serve as a guideline to

planning and implementing experts, as well as central and

local government in their activities related, inter alia, to

land management.

Furthermore, it ensures harmonisation of the development

throughout the territory and a real opportunity to combine

interests in accordance with the characteristics of the

terrain, demographic movements, climate changes and

other factors affecting development nowadays.


On a legal and technical plan, the General

National PlanShqipëria 2030” establishes

the legal framework and provides high-level

principles mandatory for implementation by

decision-making authorities, law enforcement

institutions, and citizens. It also puts an

end once and forever to the chaotic and

spontaneous development, and the misuse of

land and natural and touristic resources of our

beautiful Albania.

The Sustainable Development Goals and the

New Urban Agenda 2030, adopted in October

2016 by the UN Member States in the World

Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban

Development, held in Quito, Ecuador, were

taken into consideration in the preparation of

the General National PlanShqipëria 2030”.

In addition, clear political and technical

milestones have been established in

collaboration with the Ministries, the local

government bodies, as well as other institutions

and stakeholders that contributed to this

traNTPArent and all-encompassing process.

This inter-institutional synergy ensured the

mapping of this complete, flexible and dynamic

document. Today, we have in our hands a set

of principles embodying the main priorities of

economic, social and cultural development in

the country.

All those involved in the various stages of this

project deserve recognition and appreciation,

including experts from the ministries and

agencies, specialists from municipalities,

professional associations, academia and

interested citizens.

I am also remarkably grateful to the

considerable support provided by our

international partners including USAID,

OSCE, the Embassy of the Federal Republic of

Germany (GIZ), The Embassy of the Kingdom of

the Netherlands and the Council of Europe.

I would like to highlight the contribution of the

team from the Ministry of Urban Development

and the National Territorial Planning Agency,

whose commitment and professionalism made it

possible to programme and process a great deal

of information and prepare this policy document.

The culmination of such serious and

professional work into a legal document is only

the first step. The challenge ahead of us is the

meticulous implementation of the whole range

of principles and objectives enshrined in this

major instrument.

I remain fully confident that this instrument will

serve to the acceleration of the journey towards

European Albania.

Minister of Urban Development

Eglantina GJERMENI


TABLE OF CONTENTS

10 Acronyms

12 List of tables, figures, maps, graphics

1 2

18 General National Plan

Shqipëria 2030

18

19

Introduction

Methodology

40 Albania under the

European and regional

context of the Balkans

and the Mediterranean

41

2.1 Connection

Corridors

20

24

1.1 Purpose and importance

of preparing the GNP

1.2 The legal framework

for the preparation and

implementation of GNP and

harmonisation with national

political and economic

instruments

50

2.2 Potentials and

Challenges for

Development and

Integration

28

1.3 GNP objectives and

policies

30

1.4 Vision statement


3

56 Territorial systems

3.3.1 Drawbacks of the

56

58

Main findings and guidelines

of GNP for the territorial

systems

Current structure and territorial

organization trend in Albania

96

99

agricultural sector in

the country

3.3.2 The approach of

the General National

Plan on the agricultural

sector

60

Territorial organization by

the GNP

107

3.3.3 GNP proposals for

the agricultural system

62

3.1 Urban System

108

3.4 Water System

62

64

71

3.1.1 Polycentric, smart

and comprehensive

development based on

European models

3.1.2 The criteria for the urban

system organization

3.1.3 Strategic territorial

proposals for urban centres

108

112

123

3.4.1 National water

framework and current

context

3.4.2 Diversity of water

use

3.4.3 The impact of

climate changes on the

water system

86

88

3.2 Natural System

3.2.1 The approach of the

General National Plan

"Shqipëria 2030"

126

133

3.4.4 GNP

recommendations on

the Water System

3.5 Infrastructure

System

89

3.2.2 The natural system as

an element for diversification

and interconnection of

economic sectors

133

145

3.5.1 Transport

Infrastructure System

3.5.2 Energy

91

94

3.2.3 Proposals

3.3 Agricultural System

153

3.5.3 Electronic

Telecommunication

Infrastructure/ICT


TABLE OF CONTENTS

4

156 Regionalization

5

174 Economy

159

166

4.1 Collaboration between

cities and local centres

4.2 Towards

regionalization

174

5.1 A description of the

priority economic sectors

ensuring rapid and

sustainable economic

growth

185

5.2 Description of the

country's potential for the

development of economic

clusters

187

5.3 The possibility of

strengthening regional

development poles and

specific development

areas

189

5.3.1 Regional development

pole Kukes - Has - Tropoja

190

5.3.2 Regional development

pole Korça – Pogradec

191

5.3.3 Regional development

pole Elbasan

192

5.3.4 Regional development

pole Tirana - Durres, the

central economic engine

193

5.3.5 Regional development

pole Shkodra - Lezha,

the western gate of the

northern mountainous

region


6

195

196

197

198

199

200

201

5.3.6 Regional development

pole Vlora - Fier - Berat

5.3.7 Regional development

pole Gjirokastra - Saranda,

the southern gate of the

Albanian Riviera

5.4 Specific development

areas

5.4.1 Specific development

area Dibra - Mat - Klos -

Bulqiza

5.4.2 Specific development

area Malesi e Madhe -

Tropoja

5.4.3 Specific development

area Puka - Mirdita - Fushe

Arrez

5.4.4 Specific development

area Skrapar - Permet -

Kelcyre

204 Climate change

204

205

7

216 Implementation

of GNP

216

217

217

8

Introduction

6.1 Evaluation of

climate change,

mitigation and

adaptation

7.1 Phase I 2015 - 2020

7.2 Phase II 2020 - 2025

7.3 Phase III 2025 - 2030

224 Monitoring

230 Glossary

232 Bibliography

234 Appendixes


Acronyms

WBA Water Basin Agency

ADF Albanian Development Fund

NEA National Environment Agency

NANR National Agency of Natural Resources

NTPA National Territorial Planning Agency

NARD National Agency for Regional

Development

NAPA National Agency of Protected Areas

MAT Metabolic Analysis of Territory

ANTP Albanian National Transport Plan

REA Regional Environmental Agency

ARA Albanian Road Authority

WRA Water Regulatory Authority

ASIG State Authority of Geoterritorial

Information

REDA Regional Economic Development

Agency

RDA Regional Development Agency

WB The World Bank

EU European Union

CBD Central Business District

COP Conference of the Parties

GDWM General Directorate of Water

Managment

GDPGD General Directorate of Policies and

Government Decentralization

GDWSS General Directorate of Water Supply

and Sewerage

EBRD European Bank for Reconstruction

and Development

EEA European Environment Agency

EEC European Economic Community

EIONET European Network of Environmental

Information and Observation

WRA Water Regulatory Authority

ESDP European Territorial Development

Perspective

ESPON Europe Territorial Vision 2050

(TeVi 2050)

GEI Global Environmental Instrument

GHG GreenHouse Gas

GIS Geographical Information System

GIZ Deutsche Gesellschaft für

Internationale Zusammenarbeit

GWP Global Water Partnership

IAP Ionian Adriatic Pipeline

IBRD International Bank for Reconstruction

and Development

ICZM Integrated Coastal Zone Management

FDI Foreign Direct Investment

INSTAT Institute of Statistics

IPA Instrument for Pre-Accession

Assistance

UN United Nations Organization

WCPA The World Commission on Protected

Areas

EC European Council

KITCASP Key Indicators for Territorial

Cohesion and Territorial Planning

NTC National Territorial Council

NWC National Water Council

CM Council of Ministers

WSC Water Service Company

TPDL Territorial Planning and

Development Law

MES Ministry of Education and Sports

MARDWM Ministry of Agriculture,

Rural Development and

Water Management

MOJ Ministry of Justice

MEDTTE Ministry of Economic Development,

Tourism, Trade and Entrepreneurship

MEI Ministry of Energy and Industry

MF Ministry of Finance

MC Ministry of Culture

ME Ministry of Environment

MSWY Ministry of Social Welfare and Youth

MFA Ministry of Foreign Affairs

MIA Ministry of Internal Affairs

MH Ministry of Health

10


MH Ministry of Health

MSLA Minister of State for Local Affairs

MTI Ministry of Transport and

Infrastructure

MUD Ministry of Urban Development

NAP National Adaptation Plan

NCCS National Climate Change Secretariat

LGU Local Government Unit

OECD Organization for Economic

Cooperation and Development

MTBP Medium Term Budget Program

GDP Gross Domestic Product

WRIP Water Resources and Irrigation

Project

DLP Detailed Local Plan

DPNIA Detailed Plan of National Importance

Areas

EP European Parliament

NSP National Sectoral Plan

PM Program of Measures

RBMP River Basin Management Plan

PP Public Participation

PPP Public Private Partnership

GLP General Local Plan

REC Regional Environmental Center

SEETO South East Europe Transport

Observatory

Sida Swedish International Development

Cooperation Agency

WISE Water Information System for Europe

NWS National Water Strategy

NSDI National Strategy for Development

and Integration

TSNWC Technical Secretariat of the National

Water Council

IDS Irrigation and Drainage Strategy

AGS Albanian Geological Service

AT Air Transport

TAP Trans Adriatic Pipeline

TCI Tourism Climatic Index

TETCN Trans-European Transport Core

Networks

ToR Terms of Reference

UNDP United Nations Development

Programme

UNFCC The United Nations Framework

Convention on Climate Change

USAID United States Agency for International

Development

CMD Council of Ministers Decision

EIA Environmental Impact Assessment

SEA Strategic Environmental Assessment

WBR Western Ballkan Ring

WEF World Economic Forum

AEA Agro-ecological Areas

FUA Functional Urban Area

PA Protected Area

TDMA Tiranë - Durrës Metropolitan Area

SPA Special Protected Area

WBIF Western Balkan Investment

Framework

ANI Areas of National Importance

11


Tables, Figures, Maps, Graphics

Tables

Table 3.1 Urban centres hierarchy, GNP 2030

Table 3.2 Population as per Census 2001 and 2011 for the regional development poles

Table 3.3 Drainage and irrigation of lands as per the counties

Table 3.4 Water system pollution sources

Table 3.5 Measurement of indicators for the water system

Table 5.1 Poverty indicators by county (percentage, gap, severity)

Table 5.2 The main economic indicators, 2012

Table 6.1 Forecasted changes in temperature (°C) from different time horizons related to 1990

Table 6.2 Forecasted changes in annual precipitations (%) from different time horizons related to 1990

Table 8.1 Development indicators according to the problematic

Figures

Figure 1.1 Time span of political, economic and territorial planning instruments in Albania

Figure 1.2 Hierarchy of plans and the scheme of responsible authorities

Figure 1.3 Vision Statement illustrated

Figure 2.1 Pan-European Corridors

Figure 2.2 SEETO Road Network

Figure 2.3 SEETO Railway Network

Figure 2.4 Ports and airports network

Figure 2.5 Albania’s position compared to the economic corridors of European relevance

Figure 2.6 (a) Mediterranean and Balkans projects including Albania: Balkans, Mediterranean, Adriatic

and Ionian seas and the cross-border projects in the Danube macro-region

Figure 2.6 (b) Macro-regional strategies and sea basins

Figure 2.7 IPA CROSS Border projects: Italy-Albania-Montenegro, Albania-Kosovo, Albania-

Montenegro, Albania-FYROM, Albania-Greece

Figure 2.8 Cross-border and national urban centres that should increase cooperation under

IPACB projects

Figure 2.9 Possibilities for Albania to integrate and establish connections in the European urban

centres hierarchy map classified as per MEGA 1 and 2 cities, A scenario

Figure 3.1 Territorial structure 2000-2014

Figure 3.2 (a) Territorial organization for economic management purposes and territorial

planning 2016, as per 4 macroregions

Figure 3.2 (b) Territorial organization for economic management purposes and territorial

planning 2016, as per 6 macroregions

Figure 3.3 Territorial organization as per the driving forces and future trends

12


Figure 3.4 Current organization of the systems in zones, corridors and centres, and their overlapping

Figure 3.5 Future organization of the systems in zones, corridors and centres, and their overlapping

Figure 3.6 Central Place Theory

Figure 3.7 Central places in urban areas

Figure 3.8 Three natural parks proposed by GNP: the Park of Buna, the Park of Alps and

the Park of Vjosa

Figure 3.9 Main elements of the natural system

Figure 3.10 Typology of communes and municipalities

Figure 3.11 (a) (b) (c) Agricultural system diagram “Metabolism of Albania”

Figure 3.12 Food balance in Albania “Metabolism of Albania”

Figure 3.13 Water flow diagram “Metabolism of Albania”

Figure 4.1 Group 1 “Big/peripheral”

Figure 4.2 Group 2 “Small/peripheral”

Figure 4.3 Group 3 “Medium-semi-central”

Figure 4.4 Group 4 “Small/central (prey)”

Figure 4.5 Group 5 “Medium/central (half-predators)”

Figure 4.6 Group 6 “Small/central (predators)”

Figure 4.7(a) Hartographic multivariate representation. (b) Clustered with SOM

Figure 4.8 Territorial interventions proposed by the GNP for local sub/ units, based on the territorial

grouping trends described above

Figure 6.1 Potential floodable areas due to the rise in sea levels up to 2050

Figure 6.2 Classification of endangered areas due to river floods

Figure 6.3 Schematic map for the adaptation of the Drin - Mat area

Figure 7.1 The scheme of integrated instruments for the territorial administration in the areas of

national importance

Figure 8.1 Proposed indicators for monitoring the territorial development, according to GNP 2030

Maps

Map 1.1 Vision map according to the General National Plan "Shqipëria 2030"

Map 3.1 Interactions between gateway cities and hubs, GNP 2030

Map 3.2 Urban system risks

Map 3.3 The current situation of the natural system 2015

Map 3.4 The territorial proposals for the natural system, GNP 2030

Map 3.5 Natural system, GNP 2030

Map 3.6 Agricultural system “Metabolism of Albania”

Map 3.7 Agricultural system, GNP 2030

Map 3.8 Regionalization of agricultural products

Map 3.9 Water flow “Metabolism of Albania”

Map 3.10 Local units inside and outside the jurisdiction area of Water Supply and Water

Supply-Sewerages Entities

13


Map 3.11 Water basins according to water catchment area and resources size

Map 3.12 Surface waters and basins quality. Source: Ministry of Environment, NEA 2014

Map 3.13 Underground waters monitoring network and aquifers typology

Map 3.14 Evaluation of the underground waters vulnerability

Map 3.15 Water use potentials compared to the needs for drinking water

Map 3.16 Risks from water flooding, erosion and river pollution

Map 3.17 Integrated transport infrastructure, GNP 2030

Map 3.18 Road transport and multimodal nodes, GNP 2030

Map 3.19 Rail transport and the multimodal nodes, GNP 2030

Map 3.20 Goods movement in containers

Map 3.21 Goods transport traffic in the Mediterranean

Map 3.22 Multimodal transport development axis in Albania

Map 3.23 Energy flow “Metabolism of Albania”

Map 3.24 Fortification of transmission lines

Map 3.25 Transmission lines

Map 3.26 Renewable energy utilization potential

Map 3.27 Energy infrastructure

Map 4.1 Urban system and territorial interconnection

Map 4.2 Territorial development in Albania, GNP 2030

Map 4.3 The regional development pole Kukes-Has-Tropoja, the eastern gate of the northern

mountainous region, GNP 2030

Map 4.4 The regional development pole Elbasan-Librazhd, GNP 2030

Map 4.5 The regional development pole Korça-Pogradec, GNP 2030

Map 4.6 The regional development pole Shkodra-Lezha, the western gate of the northern

mountainous region, GNP 2030

Map 4.7 The regional development pole Tirana-Durres, the central economic engine, GNP 2030

Map 4.8 The regional development pole Vlora-Fier-Berat, GNP 2030

Map 4.9 The regional development pole Gjirokastra-Saranda, the southern gate of the Albanian

Riviera, GNP 2030

Map 6.1 Water outflow and floods

Map 7.1 The integrated map of territorial systems

Graphics

Graphic 3.1 Protected Areas Development Strategy, NAPA

Graphic 3.2 Agricultural production as per the regions

Graphic3.3 Water use, Elaborated by: NTPA

Graphic3.4 Capacities and utilization of drinking water

Graphic 3.5 Water use diversity

Graphic 3.6 Strategic objectives for 2030

14


Graphic 3.7 Electricity consumption as per the sectors of the economy

Graphic 3.8 Energy balance for hydrocarbons as per the sectors for 2010

Graphic 3.9 Energy from biomass

Graphic 5.1 The main sectors of the economy

Graphic 5.2 The progress of the main sectors of the economy

Graphic 5.3 Annual change

Graphic 5.4 The weight of the main sectors of the economy

Graphic 5.5 The contribution of the main sectors of the economy in the economic growth

Graphic 5.6 The contribution of the regions in the economic growth for 2013

Graphic 5.7 Volume of trade and balance of trade

Graphic 5.8 The public debt and national debt

Graphic 5.9 Foreign direct investment

Graphic 5.10 Employment indicators

Graphic 5.11 Welfare indicators

Graphic 5.12 GDP per inhabitant by county

Graphic 5.13 Population indicators

Graphic 6.1 The forecasted change in annual precipitations (%)

Graphic 6.2 CO 2

equivalent emissions for all economic sectors (kt)

15


1General National Plan

Shqipëria 2030


Contents

18

19

20

24

28

30

Introduction

Methodology

1.1 Purpose and importance of preparing the GNP

1.2 The legal framework for the preparation and

implementation of GNP and harmonisation with

national political and economic instruments

1.3 GNP objectives and policies

1.4 Vision Statement


General National Plan

Shqipëria 2030

Introduction

The General National Plan (GNP) “Shqipëria

2030” is the paramount instrument of

territorial planning in Albania, which

addresses planning issues in an integrated

manner, considering the Albanian territory

as a whole.

Secondary hierarchy plans will be detailed

based on its principles, objectives and

specifications. These secondary plans

inlcude the National Sectorial Plans (NSP),

Detailed Plans of National Importance Areas

(DPNIA), Regional Development Plans (RDP),

Sectorial Plans at Regional Level (SPRL),

General Local Plans (GLP) and any other

territorial planning instruments stemming

from the development needs.

GNP provides the reference strategic

framework for sustainable territorial

development for the next 15 years, with

a view to ensuring a balanced national

economic and social development, sound

management of its natural resources,

environmental protection, all while ensuring

a rational use of the land.

This document establishes the basis for the

harmonisation of sectorial and cross-cutting

policies which affect the territory or generate

associated effects therein, it structures and

balances urban and rural developments and

provides a reliable climate for long-term

investments.

GNP comes not only as a fulfilment of a

legal obligation, but also as a prerequisite to

achieving the government program objectives

to enhance citizens' welfare and national

economic growth by reducing inequalities,

strengthening the strategic partnership with

neighbouring countries and implementing

policies that foster competitiveness of

economic sectors, thus, ensuring integration

in the European Union.

GNP is launched at a key moment for the

territorial reorganization of Albania, as

an instrument supporting and enabling

a qualitative implementation of the

administrative territorial reform. It

constitutes a key platform for the new

regions and municipalities in the drafting of

their regional and local plans.

18


GNP is not a “construction plan”, it does

not show how many square meters will be

built in our country and does not specify

their location. It is impossible for a strategic

document such as the GNP to provide

an exhaustive list of the execution of all

investments in specific areas for the entire

territory of the country.

All GNP specifications are based on

preserving and strengthening the particular

characteristics of the specific area, region

or territory, as per the priority and adequate

uses depending from those specific features.

In this context, designation of the protected

natural areas, development of urban areas,

transport corridors, tourism priority areas

have been specified in order to save these

areas suitable for such functions from

other contradictory, inappropriate uses or

which generate a negative impact on the

sustainable and qualitative development of

the country.

The plan does not provide for holding,

housing capacities, tourist accommodation,

etc. The plan defines the appropriate spaces

for the development of various sectors and

sets out the principles for the integrated

development of these areas, thus ensuring

the compliance with their ecological and

social capacity. The realization of specific

objectives and the development of detailed

economic, social, environmental and tourism

analyses are subject to sectorial plans. Thus,

aiming to protect from misuse all those areas

and territories suitable for a specific use.

The GNP document is accompanied by

a Strategic Environmental Assessment

study, which will ensure the avoidance and

minimization of negative effects on the

territory.

The GNP document will be subject to

evaluation, in accordance with the new

social, economic and environmental factors:

- every 3 years, according to the Medium

Term Budget Plan timeframe;

- at the end of every 5 years, according to the

timeframe of the NSDI.

The work of the institutions responsible for

updating this document will be continuous

and progressive. The adjustment of the

GNP document according to the new legal

framework to be approved, laws or DoCMs,

which define further rules for the protection,

development and management of the

territory, will be immediate and through a

traNTPArent process.

The updated GNP, reflecting the above

mentioned adjustments, shall be periodically

published in the Register of Territorial

Planning, the websites of institutions

responsible for its updating and other means

of public information.

In any case, when the update of the GNP is

deemed necessary, as a result of reflecting

the legal framework changes or due to new

active social, economic and environmental

factors, coordination and consultation

sessions shall be held with the authorities

responsible for the territorial planning and

development, according to the procedures

defined by the relevant legislation.

Methodology

The methodology for the preparation of the

GNP “Shqipëria 2030” is based on three key

and complementary steps:

1. The metabolic analysis of the territory as

a model applied for the identification and

analysis of the flows of materials and energy

within specific territories. This model provides

the researchers with a framework through

which to explore the interactions of natural

and human systems in specific regions. 1

2. Formulation of the Vision Statement.

3. Strategic Planning, as a technique applied

in local government units, metropolitan

areas and regions, which integrates

social, economic, financial, territorial,

environmental, governance, institutional

and legal issues into a single framework.

It establishes a vision-based development

and enables objectives, programs and action

plans to be implemented. It has no strictly

1

A broader definition is included in the CMD no. 671, dated 29.7.2015 “On approval of the Regulation on Territorial Planning”,

article 2, paragraph 19.

19


egulatory nature. It provides the methods to

address challenges, avoid barriers and to make

an efficient use of opportunities and resources.

It may be implemented through participation.

The process of metabolic analysis of the

territory was based on the territorial

scanning, and was realised through i)

the sectorial strategies already adopted

and those under preparation by central

institutions and ministries ii) inter-ministerial

meetings, seminars with local and foreign

experts, accompanied by field visits, iii) data

collection and analysis on the flows with the

highest impact on the territorial development:

water, food, energy and tourism.

The formulation of the Vision Statement was

the result of a process supported by experts

from priority sectors in the development of

the country within central institutions and

representatives of non-profit associations

and organizations. 2 The Vision Statement

was formulated based on the methodology

and process indicated by ESPON 3 relating to

the Territorial Vision (TeVi) Europe 2050. The

working group used two methods to prepare

the vision: i) based on scientific facts and

information; ii) based on values and guided

by policies.

Both methods were implemented

independently, but they fed into each other

until the final result. This method enables

a vision based on the existing and planned

policies, including the challenges they

bring about, and underlines the dimension

of planning as a process. The formulated

vision maintains the strategic, long-term,

comprehensive and coherent character.

The strategic planning was focused on the

objectives and policies of the plan. The

territorial strategic proposals were made

based on five primary systems organized into

corridors, areas and centres. The elements

taken into consideration in these proposals

are based on the following:

- the potential for multidimensional

economic development determined by the

location, size, accessibility and connectivity;

- the identifying local character conditioned

by specific geographical, natural, historical,

cultural, traditional features of economic,

urban, and social development;

- the security measures against natural

disasters and climate changes.

1.1 Purpose and

importance of preparing

the GNP

Purpose

The purpose of the GNP is to ensure

the preparation and implementation of

frameworks for territorial development of the

Albanian territory.

Importance of GNP

This document is of strategic importance to

the economic, political and legal dimensions

of Albania.

In the economic context, considering the

territory as a finite source and the basis for

the development of all economic sectors, the

plan provides for its balanced, qualitative and

long-term development.

- Provides a common vision for the

development of different sectors, avoiding

duplication of efforts through their

coordination, thus ensuring effectiveness of

economic investments.

- Defines the necessary space for proper

economic development and ensures such

space is properly situated in relation to

infrastructure and labour force.

- The plan enables the avoidance and/

2

For further information, see Annex 1 on the participation process.

3

ESPON (European Territorial Planning Observation) is a EU program with its initial objective of taking concrete steps

towards ESDP (European Territorial Development Perspective) implementation, especially to improve knowledge, research

and information on the territorial development and to be prepared for the EU territory enlargement. Currently, the mission

of ESPON 2020 is to continue the work on the consolidation of the Network of European Territorial Observatory, and to

strengthen political provision and use of credible, regular and comparative data.

20


Objectives of GNP

(a) Promotes territorial cohesion through balanced economic and social regional

development and enhances competition;

(b) Supports the development generated by mixed urban functions and improves

the relations between urban and rural areas;

(c) Promotes accessibility;

(d) Increases access to knowledge and information;

(e) Reduces environmental damages;

(f) Protects and strengthens natural resources and cultural heritage, (with

reference to the Law no.9048, dated 07/04/2003 “On cultural heritage”, amended.

(g) Enhances cultural heritage as a development factor;

(h) Develops energy sources, while maintaining security;

(i) Promotes qualitative and sustainable tourism;

(j) Limits the impact of natural disasters.

Reasons for preparing the GNP

Economic benefits:

• Ensures stability and confidence on long-term investments;

• Identifies adequate land location, which meets the requirement for economic

development;

• Ensures that the land for development is well-situated in relation to the

transport network and labour force;

• Promotes environmental quality in both urban and rural areas, that create

more favourable conditions for investments, thus generating development;

• Promotes cultural heritage as a national asset and a source of profit;

• Identifies developments that fulfil the needs of local communities in urban

and rural areas;

• Promotes regeneration and recovery;

• Enables a more efficient and sustainable decision-making.

Social benefits:

• Takes into account the needs of local communities in the development of policies;

• Improves accessibility, when considering the location of a new development;

• Foresees the provision of local infrastructure, where it is missing;

• Promotes the reuse of free and abandoned land, especially if it has a negative

impact on the quality of life and the economic development potential;

• Supports the creation and maintenance of pleasant, healthy and safe

environments.

Environmental benefits:

• Promotes adequate regeneration and use of land, buildings and

infrastructure;

• Promotes the reuse of previously established land (former industrial

zones, etc.) and minimizes the use for development of free natural lands;

• Protects the assets of environmental, historical and cultural heritage;

• Addresses solutions to natural risks (e.g. floods, air quality, etc.);

• Protects and enhances characteristics of the recreation and natural

heritage areas;

•Promotes multimodal access to already developed or to-be developed

areas (e.g. forecast of railway stations and airports integrated with urban

transport etc.);

• Promotes energy efficiency in development planning.

21


or mitigation of crises of various nature

that Albania may face, crises of financial,

environmental, climatic nature, etc.

- Establishes a reliable climate for long-term

investments.

- Promotes the use of renewable energy

sources.

In the political context, the GNP is of

strategic importance to the multi-dimensional

integration in the European Union, and to

the establishment of sustainable links with

the neighbouring countries, thus building

a climate of political stability that fosters

economic growth.

The plan provides for the implementation

of an economic, territorial and governance

model at multiple levels, capable of attracting

EU funds laying the foundations for territorial

regionalization.

In the legal context, the General National Plan

plays an important role in the implementation

of the sectorial legal framework in the field of

territorial planning and administration. The

planning reform, launched in 2009, could not

be fully and successfully implemented due to

the absence of planning instruments as per

the legal hierarchy.

Following the approval and entry into force

of the Law no. 107/2014 “On territorial

planning and development”, amended, and

the regulations for its enforcement, the

process for drafting planning instruments was

concurrently undertaken. GNP stands at the

top of the pyramid in this hierarchy of planning

instruments. The preparation of GNP is an

obligation arising under the Law “On territorial

planning and development” and a prerequisite

for the preparation and implementation of

lower hierarchy plans.

Two other key reforms on territorial

development were launched in 2014 - 2015,

the Administrative Territorial Reform, that

reorganized the territorial administration at

the local level in 61 municipalities and the

Territorial Regionalization Reform, which

defined the middle level of territorial division

into four main regions.

The GNP is of primary importance to the

success of these reforms, because its approval

ensures a coherent planning from the national

level to the regional and local level.

The need for GNP preparation is further

highlighted in the framework of coordination

for the successful implementation of objectives

of the Government of the Republic of Albania 4 ,

such as:

• Increasing the EU funding absorbing capacity

and implementation of regional development

initiatives as a vital step towards integration;

• The strategic link with the neighbouring

countries as the road towards economic

recovery of the country, guaranteeing the

efficiency of major infrastructure, economic

regional investments and the positioning of

Albania as a model and factor promoting peace

and stability in the region;

• Implementation of an economic, territorial

and governing model at multiple levels, which

reduces inequalities, ensures diversity and

economic independence in a sustainable

manner, ensures the self-recovery capacity of

the Albanian economy, promotes the knowledge

economy and innovation, and converges with

the European economy, while encouraging the

Albanian economy towards progress;

• Strengthening of sectors that will increase

the GDP and employment and will become

the key to sustainability, the adaptive and

self-recovery capacity, and the presentation

of Albania as an important knot within the

regional and international development

network. Sectors such as energy, agriculture,

tourism, and certain extracting and processing

industries should not compete with eachother

for resources, but rather should be

complementary, allow the ecosystem to provide

them services in a sustainable manner and

contribute to the enhancement of knowledge

and innovation as an engine of the future;

• Protection of natural resources for purposes

of independence of sectors, and economic and

social independence of the whole territory.

1. Territory as a source. The protection of

the Albanian ecosystems and their services is

not a purpose per se, but the key to survival

4

According to the Government Program “Next Generation Albania”, 2013-2017.

22


and sustainability in an era where multiple

global crises combine are intertwined with

the approach for regional and international

integration and opening. The society, including

the Albanian one, has embraced a system

of utilitarian and anthropocentric values,

upon the belief that it is only the technology

and increased economic production that will

guarantee the socio-economic sustainability

that people need. With this unilateral system

of values, the human society considers and

uses other components of the ecosystem in

the territory, threatening first of all, its very

existence. The Albanian society, still under

development and in pursuit of the fulfilment

of basic needs, largely risks losing its most

valuable asset – the territory, but at the same

time, it has the possibility to strongly include

the territory within the system of human

values, provided it still preserves a number of

intact natural values.

2. Territory as the basis and reflection of

sectorial development. Social and economic

territorial disparities are still prominent in

Albania. To date, institutions and the society

have attempted to address them through

sectorial policies. This vertical approach,

where sectors, though successful, do not

equally address every individual, family

and residence, has increased inequalities.

This trend is also European. Hence, for the

last 25 years Europe has been trying to

integrate in the development and policymaking

processes the horizontal approach

– the policy for territorial development, as

the source and basis upon which sectors

compete. This dimension, the territory, has

not yet been integrated into sectorial policies

in Albania. But, it is about time for the

economic system to produce faster growth,

while guaranteeing stability and territorial,

social and economic cohesion. Dilemmas

of the type; industry versus tourism, or

agriculture versus urbanization and economic

areas and other related ones should not be

resolved at the expense of resources and

to the benefit of the sector, but in view of

the welfare, sustainable development and

longevity of territorial assets.

3. European Integration. Albania should

apply the binding strategies and directives for

European Integration, without underestimating

the guiding ones, such as the territorial

agenda. The latter is intertwined with all

binding instruments, mutually reflecting

the objectives of IPA II, the Europe 2020

strategy, financial instruments for cohesion

and regional development, etc. The territorial

agenda, as a follow up on ESDP 5 1999, does

not reflect a direct legal instrument, but rather

a European mentality present in the European

debate on territory 6 . The requirements for

opening and integration are part of this debate,

which Albania cannot avoid, while aiming to

become part of the union of the most powerful

states of the old continent.

4. Consequences of the crisis and the risk

of future crises. Albania was affected by the

consequences of the global financial crisis and

its impact has highlighted the weaknesses

of the post-communist economic model.

Increasing figures of this development model

concealed speculative markets, negative

trade deficit, dependency on remittances,

employment depending on foreign investments

and businesses in Albania, lack of a clear and

competitive economic profile, etc. Decrease

in remittances due to the impact of the

crisis in the neighbouring countries and a

large number of returned migrants have

eliminated the balance to high import figures

and increased unemployment. The effects

in the market were immediate, especially in

the real estate market, by weakening both

domestic and foreign business confidence.

The balance of this crisis highlighted

the economic dependency of Albania on

external factors and other countries, and

this constitutes a strong warning signal for

the inevitable need to consolidate a prolific

economic profile that eliminates inequalities

and is capable of self-renewal in a situation

of global opening. Effects of expected climate

changes, of transformation of the energy

sector into independent from carbon sources

and fossil resources, and the increasing

5

Euroepan Territorial Development Perspective, signed by the planning ministers of the EU member states in 1999. Its

objectives still remain valid and coherent for the approach of European policy towards territorial development.

6

One of the latest projects of ESPON is the European Territorial Vision 2050 (TeVi 2050).

23


discrepancy between the current character of

the workforce and rapid technological changes

increase the elements of the unknown. In

particular employment, housing, the urbanrural

structure balance and existence of

favourable natural resources are the first to

be affected by the effects of a future climate,

energy and employment crisis. The country’s

ability will not be to merely predict, but also to

adapt to such conditions, in order to seize the

advantageous opportunity that a situation of

change creates.

5. Sustainability, adaptability and

regeneration. Albania is rich in quality natural

resources, but it is geographically small to be

competitive simply through the efficient use of

resources by economic sectors. In a world of

"borderless economic development", whose

ecological footprint is growing continuously,

competitiveness in the market does not

suffice, and Albania needs to "discover" its

ability for sustainability, regeneration and

adaptability. The ability of society to wisely use

the "treasures" of the territory can guarantee

our independence within a network to which

we are open and want to impact.

6. Urban/rural structure and balances

are undergoing dynamic change and their

mutual effect on the development and the

territory continues to be unpredictable. The

highly monocentric territorial structure at

national level causes the inequalities to

deepen and annexes the development in

the metropolis Tirana – Durres. In many

cases, rural areas suffer a depression in

population and economic activity, and in

other cases they become attached to cities

through continuous urban structures without

any premediated character and functions.

Urbanization disseminated throughout the

territory, often illegal and not preceded

by strategic infrastructure investments is

proof of the lack of a vision, which the future

needs. Continuation and prevalence of this

scenario will result in a fragmentation of

habitats, loss of natural and agricultural

areas, and consolidation and expansion of

urban structures without any identity, without

employment opportunities and loaded with

social issues. Albania needs to preserve the

natural and agricultural territory, as well as

the Cultural Heritage Fund, while restructuring

the urban organisms so that they are

functional, interrelated and complementary.

This restructuring economizes the land

use, creates diversity of human activity,

preserves cultural and historical identities and

integrates people in healthy communities. In a

situation of diversification of the economy and

employment, the interrelation between urban

centres of any level, and the need to engage in

the international network, a multiple transport

structure (mobility) needs to be developed,

which does not further fragment the territory,

but rather supports its consolidation.

The cultural heritage suffers inevitably and

often irreversibly from the informal and

casual development of the territory. All local

government institutions should consider of a

priority level the assets of cultural heritage

in the territories under their administration.

They should specifically refer to the Law on

Cultural Heritage, the Decision of the Council

of Ministers no. 426, dated 13/07/2007,

"On approval of the Albanian Charter of

Restoration" as well as the regulations on

the Management of Historical Centres and

Archaeological Areas.

1.2 The legal framework for the

preparation and implementation of

GNP and harmonisation with national

political and economic instruments

GNP is part of the Integrated Planning System

(IPS) and is aligned with the key processes that

guide decision-making for defining strategic

directions and allocation of resources.

The Integrated Planning System in the country

comprises two main processes:

• The National Strategy for Development and

Integration (NSDI) II 2020 (approved by DoCM

no. 348, dated 11/6/2015) & the Long Term

Development Plan/NSPP, which define the

medium and long term government objectives

and strategies for all the sectors, based on a

national vision.

• The Medium Term Budget Plan (MTBP),

which requires each ministry to develop a

3-year plan for achieving the program goals

24


and political objectives within the ministry's

expenditure ceiling, as defined in the

government fiscal plan.

In addition, there are 4 main processes that

affect and are fully reflected in the NSDI and

MTBP:

• European Integration

• Government Program

• Public Investments

• Foreign Assistance

Extension of guiding GNP frames for a

period of 15 years proves the importance of

this document in ensuring a long-term and

qualitative development of the territory through

the adoption of the most important economic

and political documents of the country.

Albania aspires to join the EU and therefore,

the GNP is guided by the principles and

objectives of a wide set of European

documents, which though not binding and

designed for Member States, are of real value

to candidate countries as Albania is.

In Europe, since at least 1999, the objectives

of the European Territorial Development

Perspective (ESDP) lead the new spirit and

innovative instruments in planning, being

constantly reflected in subsequent legal or

orientation documents (Territorial Agenda

of the European Union 2020, Europe 2020

Strategy, Territorial Vision for Europe towards

2050 etc.). These objectives aim at providing

territorial orientation to development

(polycentrism against territorial

inequalities), ensuring equal access of regions

and people to infrastructure and knowledge,

managing natural resources and cultural

heritage wisely and supporting renewal.

Albania is facing these same challenges

in terms of the future development of the

territory. Recent studies have shown a

significant increase in territorial inequalities

(social, economic and environmental) and the

indisputable need for horizontal interweaving

of sector policies. This is necessary not only

to avoid the negative impact of the exclusively

sectorial implementation of the ministry

policies, but also to strengthen the positive

outcome of their goals on the territory.

The legal framework reform on urban

planning was finalized and adopted with the

Law no. 107, dated 31/07/2014 "On Territorial

Planning and Development", amended, and

the regulations issued for its enforcement, the

Decision of Council of Ministers no. 671, dated

29/07/2015 "On approval of the regulation on

territorial planning" and DoCM no. 408, dated

13/05/2015, "On approval of the regulation on

territorial development".

National General PlanShqipëria 2030” comes

as an obligation for the implementation of

this legal framework, and is defined as a

mandatory reference document for every plan

drafted in the Republic of Albania. 7

2015 2018 2020 2025 2030

GNP

NSDI II NSDI III NSDI IV

MBP

Figure 1.1 Time span of political, economic and territorial planning instruments in Albania

7

Law no. 107, dated 31/07/2014 "On the Planning and Development of Territory", as amended.

25


Principles of territorial planning and development 8

1. Development must be sustainable and must provide for the needs of generations

for social equity, economic development and environmental protection;

2. Development of the territory is a matter of national importance; it must be fair

and the value created must be benefitted and appropriated by the society that

creates it;

3. Planning must harmonize public and private, national and local interests;

4. Development must be guided by planning, which is mandatory for all planning

authorities, under this Law;

5. Principles and values of planning documents must be applicable, even after the

amendment thereof;

6. TraNTPArency must accompany the processes of planning and development

control;

7. One-stop service;

8. Silence means consent;

9. Planning should take into account the characteristics of the context of territory

under development;

9.1 Planning should take into account the characteristics and values of the objects

of cultural heritage (monuments of culture) of the territory under development;

10. Decentralization and subsidiarity;

11. Harmonisation with the European Union approach in the field of territorial

planning and development, as well as in terms of environmental criteria,

conservation of biodiversity and protected areas;

12. Development should be based on comprehensive planning and design, which

guarantees equal conditions and rights for all human beings, regardless of the

needs and characteristics of each;

13. Planning and development should ensure the elimination of barriers for a

safe, equal and independent use of spaces by all persons, including those with

disabilities or special groups, for which technical solutions or special equipment

are necessary;

14. Hierarchy of plans;

15. Distribution of development rights must be fair and based on the principle

of proportionality;

16. Mandatory insurance of facilities, civil and professional liability in construction;

17. Access and public participation in the preparation of planning documents and

development control;

18. Integrated planning system.

8

Ibid, article 4.

26


Central Planning Instru-

NATIONAL PLANNING AU-

General National Plan [GNP]

Forum of Planning

Coordination at Central

Level

Council of Ministries

[CM]

Sectoral National

Plan

Sectors

Transport

Energy

Industry

Agriculture

Environ-

Ministries responsible

for planning

National Council of

Territory [NCT]

Detailed Plan of

National Importance

Areas

[DPNIA]

Areas of National

Importance

Protected Areas

Historic Areas

Touristic Areas

Mining Industry

National Spatial Territorial

Agency [NTPA]

Responsibile Ministry for Spatial

Planning and Development

[MUD]

Local Planning Instru-

LOCAL PLANNING AU-

Sectoral County Level

Plan

[SCLP]

Head of County

County Council

County

Coordination

Forum for Detailed

Central Level

General Local Plan

[GLP]

Municipality

Mayor

Municipality

Council

Municipality

Local

Administrative units

Detailed Local Plan

[DLP]

Forum of

Detailed Local

Planning

Plan

Advisory

Forum

Planning

Directories

Figure 1.2 Hierarchy of plans and the scheme of responsible authorities

27


1.3 GNP objectives and policies

17 Objectives for sustainable development 9

1. Give an end to all forms of poverty, wherever it exists;

2. Give an end to hunger, provide food, improve nutrition and promote

sustainable agriculture;

3. Ensure a healthy life and welfare for all;

4. Provide comprehensive, quality and equal education and promote long-term

education opportunities for everyone;

5. Achieve gender equality and support women and girls;

6. Ensure the supply of drinking water and its sustainable management for

everyone;

7. Provide access to energy and affordable, safe, reliable and upgraded energy

supply for everyone;

8. Promote inclusive and sustainable economic development, full and productive

employment and decent jobs for everyone;

9. Build adequate infrastructure, promote sustainable and comprehensive

industrialization and encourage innovation;

10. Reduce inequalities within and outside cities;

11. Make cities and human settlements safer, inclusive, sustainable and

re-adaptive.

12. Ensure sustainable production and consumption;

13. Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts;

14. Sustainable protection and use of oceans, seas, and water resources

for sustainable development.

15. Protect, recover and promote the sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems,

sustainable management of forests, fight desolation and stop and subvert land

degradation, stop biodiversity loss;

15.1 Promote, conserve and develop the assets of cultural heritage throughout

the territory of the Republic of Albania.

16. Promoting a peaceful, all-inclusive society for sustainable development,

provide access to justice for everyone and build effective, measurable and

comprehensive institutions at all levels;

17. Strengthen the implementation instruments and revitalize the global

partnership for sustainable development.

9

Agenda 2030 on sustainable development, UN

Source: http://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/development-agenda/

28


The objectives of the General National Plan

are based on sustainable planning objectives

of the most important documents of European

planning such as the European Territorial

Agenda 2020, the Europe 2020 Strategy,

Territorial Vision for Europe 2050, etc.

GNP strategic objectives

I. Multi-dimensional integration in the

European context;

II. Creating and strengthening a strong and

competitive economic position of Albania

within the Balkans and the Mediterranean;

III. Providing physical and territorial integrity

of the historic, cultural, natural and urban

landscape throughout the Albanian territory;

IV. Increasing and improving the quality of

life of people by promoting economic growth,

eliminating territorial disparities, removing

barriers of access to economy, infrastructure

and knowledge;

V. Promoting the "right to the city";

VI. Establishing the bases for regional

development.

Specific objectives of GNP

The following objectives derive from the Law

no. 107, dated 31/07/2014 "On Territorial

Planning and Development", amended:

a) Specification of principles and guidelines

for a sustainable and balanced territorial

development;

b) Creation of territorial conditions for regional

development;

c) Management of creation and development of

the national public infrastructure;

d) Creation of conditions for the preservation

of ecosystems, biodiversity, natural resources

above and under the ground and of the natural

and cultural assets, balancing the effects of

housing systems and economic activities.

Protection and development of green areas

and other agricultural land;

e) Orientation of regional inter-local and local

planning objectives;

f) Coordination of work, alignment and

orientation of sectorial development objectives

that have an impact on the territory;

g) Compliance with the orientations and

guidelines of the European Territorial

Development Perspective.

Policies

• Development of national infrastructure

connecting Albania with pan - European

transport corridors;

• Development of Albania as interconnecting

infrastructure and energy centre for the

Balkans;

• Intelligent growth of the urban system

through polycentric, densifying and

comprehensive development;

• Promotion and access to areas with

natural and landscape features. Intelligent

management of natural resources and

cultural heritage, which ensures the

preservation of cultural identity and diversity

facing growth and globalization. At the same

time, it makes them active and contributing

to the economic growth of the country by

reactivating them as assets and improving

and increasing appropriate access to them;

• Development of multimodal and

environmentally-friendly transportation

system. Promotion of integrated transport

and new concepts of environmentallyfriendly

mobility. Such transport supports

the polycentric development of the territory

to achieve a gradual progress that ensures

equal access to infrastructure and economy;

• Development of energy infrastructure

diversified towards the renewable energy;

• Integrated planning and development

of distribution and connecting flows of

communication, transportation, food and

energy that provides a cohesive, efficient

and quality development of the abovementioned

corridors;

• Hierarchical organization, specialization

and functional grouping of urban centres;

• Promotion of the "right to the city" for

informal areas.

29


1.4 Vision statement

This vision is based on certain assumptions

and preconditions as follows:

• urban population will increase in the

centres of every level of the polycentric

network;

• a stable internal political spirit will be

created, playing the role of the peace and

integration factor in the Balkans;

• development of strategies and taking

concrete measures for coping with the

effects of climate change, including the

current civil natural emergencies, will be a

priority of the government program;

• institutional cooperation will be healthy;

• decentralization of governance and its

democratization will strengthen;

• there will be free elections, through a

traNTPArent and fair process;

• sector and service standards will be

established and serious work will be done

towards achieving them;

• a policy of free movement orientation

through strategic investments and opening of

new jobs in order to reduce the coefficient of

age dependency will be outlined;

• serious investments in increasing the

capacity to increase the absorption power of

the EU funds;

• a strong foundation and operational base

of information will be established, without

which the programming elements of the

vision implementation cannot function;

• ownership of this vision will be guaranteed

by the government, but also by civil groups

and political forces, as a vision of the future

of Albanians, far from political divisions and

differences.

Consideration for drafting the Vision

"Shqipëria 2030"

1. Opening, interconnection and centrality

"Shqipëria 2030" comes along as a European

network centrality (polycentric) and eventually

ceases to be a weak peripheral link. The

territory is covered by an integral and threedimensional

network of movement and

communication, with innovative technology

and above all, environmentally clean, with

quick corridors and solutions that do not

fragment the habitat and allow green

infrastructure to transversely penetrate the

mobility network. Physical and economic

enhancement of the communication and

logistics network forms the basis of Albania's

competitiveness, not only in the region, but

also in Europe and Asia.

The geographical position of Albania changes

from comparative advantage to the most

powerful asset of development. The network

is enriched with additional functions, such

as consolidated urban areas, areas of

extracting and processing economic activity,

clusters, business incubators, financial and

administrative services, etc. The network

itself is conceived as permeable by the

surrounding natural ecosystems, with the

aim of eliminating any possibility of habitat

fragmentation.

The network consists of nodes and corridors.

Nodes create spaces for a whole variety of

complementary functions and attract and

create economic and social gravity. Corridors

connect and manage the goods, people

and activities, by creating second and third

level centrality. Nodes are generally urban,

logistics, of business service areas, economic

clusters and heavy industry activities of

extraction and processing.

In any case, nodes and corridors

are traversed by capillaries of green

infrastructure that ensure the connection of

habitats and longevity of ecosystems, despite

the strength of urban structures and the

risk of fragmentation that they could carry.

In urban areas, the mobility system is built

upon the principle of traffic relief and is rich

in concrete solutions in view of this principle.

Public transport prevails and the technology

used is fully independent from fossil fuels.

2. Territorial planning that allows renewal

- intelligent and productive ecosystems and

spaces

The ecosystem and protected natural

areas constitute the connective tissue of

the national territorial organization. This

area with rich and protected biodiversity

30


consists of natural areas protected against

any human intervention, and also of areas

where the focus is on rural development and

healthy forms of non-intensive agriculture.

Intact ecosystems appear as the "ultimate

destination" environmentally clean, the heart

of the European Green Belt. Agriculture is

part of the green infrastructure capillary,

through investments in urban and productive

agriculture and well-adapted to the urban

environment (not so friendly for crop), and in

organic/biological agriculture.

based on the "mixed-use" principle. Urban

sprawl on the agricultural and natural

territory has been halted for at least the

next 30 years, and a package of development

incentives promotes intervention only in

existing urban structures and the nodes

connecting them.

Whereas the 12-month tourism, built

upon the principle of the travelling citizen,

provides services merged within the

natural ecosystems, such as the network

of ecological trails/routes, tourist farms,

active tourism of experimentation in the

green infrastructure of public spaces,

visits to protected areas, culinary tourism,

and the four seasons in one day tourism,

cultural tourism and the network of historic

archaeological sites, etc. For this reason, the

territory is conceived with a strong belt along

the coast, offering almost the entire range

of tourist services in urban and rural areas,

with an ecological and agriculture network

and a network of rapid communication that

penetrates the territory from West to East and

a number of centralities offering a number of

additional tourist services.

3. Territory as a whole

The Albanian territory is a mosaic of social,

economic and environmental values. Regions

that operate on the principle of catchment

pond are diversified in activities, in view

of national polycentrism. A second and

third network of additional centralities/

cities consolidates the regional polycentric

networks, linked to that at European level.

It ends the urban sprawl, which is

consolidated on the basis of studies on

the suitability of the territory, resources,

ecosystem value, holding capacity and

metabolism to evaluate the best scenarios

of territorial structures, whether established

or not. Existing settlements are consolidated

with services and in quality, while recently

created urban layers are densified,

supplemented with a variety of functions

31


NSDI II Vision 2015-2020

Albania - a vibrant democracy on the European Union integration path, with

a stable and competitive economy that guarantees freedom and fundamental

human rights.

Vision of the Sectorial Strategy "Digital Agenda of Albania"

2015-2020

A knowledge and information based society, through the consolidation of

digital infrastructure throughout the territory of the Republic of Albania;

improving the quality of online public services and increase of government

transparency.

Vision of the Sectorial Strategy for Decentralization and

Local Governance 2015-2020

Strengthening of local governance and decentralization process, with a

view to ensuring higher efficiency of local self-government - is the vision of

the Government that observes the principles and standards outlined in the

European Charter of Local Self-Government and the principles of European

Administrative Space for local government.

32


Vision of the Environmental Sectoral Strategy 2015-2020

A country with a sustainable social and economic development, by protecting

natural resources against pollution and degradation, through their integrated

management, by promoting environmental values and using them to the

benefit of economic prosperity.

This vision is based on the principle of integrated development with the

protection and improvement of environmental medium guaranteeing the

security of economic growth and social welfare.

Vision of the Common Strategy for Agriculture and Rural

Development 2014-2020

The vision for the development of agriculture and rural areas in Albania will

support and develop the conditions for an adequate framework for efficient,

innovative and sustainable agri-food sector, able to deal with competitive

pressure and to meet EU market requirements, through the sustainable use

of resources and productive rural areas, offering economic activities and

employment opportunities, social inclusion and quality of life for residents of

rural areas.

Vision of Tourism: Albania in 2020

Albania will be recognized as an attractive, authentic and hospitable tourist

destination in Europe, based on sustainable use of natural, cultural and

historical potentials easily accessible by international markets. Tourism plays

a major role in the Albanian economy, contributing to the improvement of the

quality of life and creating an attractive environment for investment.

33


VISION OF GENERAL NATIONAL PLAN

ALBANIA, AN INTEGRATED

CENTRE IN THE EUROPEAN

ECONOMIC AND

INFRASTRUCTURE SYSTEM, A

DIVERSE AND COMPETITIVE

ECONOMY WITHIN THE BALKANS,

A STATE AIMING AT EQUALITY OF

ACCESS TO INFRASTRUCTURE,

ECONOMY AND KNOWLEDGE,

ENSURING THE PROTECTION OF

NATURAL, HISTORICAL AND

CULTURAL HERITAGE, WITH THE

AIM OF BECOMING AN AUTHENTIC

DESTINATION.

34


Figure 1.3 Vision Statement illustrated

35


L

Koplik

E

H

T

Connection with

Central Europe

BERLIN

M O N T E N E G R O

KOLASHIN

BERANE

POZAJE

ANDRIJEVICA

PEJE

K O S O V O

Vermosh

PLAV

PODGORICE

Tamare

Jezerce

Theth

Valbone

Nikaj-Mertur

TROPOJE

GJAKOVE

Bajze

MALESI

E MADHE

Vlahan

PRIZREN

BAR

L I Q E N I I S H K O D R E S

Grile

SHKODER

Koman

PUKE

Lak-Rosh

FUSHE ARREZ

HAS

Maja e

Pashtrikut

TETOVE

ULQIN

Velipoje

VAU I

DEJES

Munelle

Kalimash

KUKES

Lumi Buna

LEZHE

MIRDITE

Bjeshka

e Oroshit

Korab

GOSTIVAR

BARI

Connection with the West

BRINDISI

Lumi Vjosë

BERAT

VAJGURORE

Rezervati

Apollonia

MALIQ

Kangonji

RROSKOVEC

Pishe-

Poro

PATOS

Mali i

Voskopoje

Tomorrit

Levan

Bredhi i

Ballsh

Drenoves

POLICAN Bogove

Vjose-

KORCE

Narte

SKRAPAR

Rafineri

MALLAKASTER

Morrava

VLORE

Narte

Nikolice

Lumi Drin i Vjetër

Lure

Rubik

DIBER

Ulez

Lumi Mat

MAT

KURBIN

Lumi Ishëm

Spac

Kepi i

Luzni-Bulac

DEBAR

Rodonit

KRUJE

KLOS

Gjiri i

Fabrika e Cimentos

BULQIZE

Lalzit

Fushe Kruje

Lumi Erzen

VORE

KAMEZ

Mali me Gropa

Amfiteatri

Martanesh

Shkozet SHIJAK

DURRES

Shengjergj

Petrele

TIRANE

Kuturman-

Shebenike-

Golem

Qafa e Bushit

Jabllanice

Peze

LIBRAZHD

KAVAJE

Vidhas ELBASAN

PEQIN

RROGOZHINE

PRRENJAS

Zona natyrore dhe

Gjinar

kulturore e Ohrit

Lumi Shkumbin

LUSHNJE

CERRIK

DIVJAKE

A G U NA

K ARAVA STASE

Karavasta

Lumi Seman Grykederdhja

Seman

GRAMSH POGRADEC

Varrezat e Selces

FIER

KUCOVE

PUSTEC

URA

se Poshtme

SELENICE

BELSH

STRUGE

L I Q

E N I

I O

R I

OHRID

M A DH E

LI Q E NI

S E

DEVOLL

I P R

S

P E

E S

VOGEL

I PRESPES SE

LIQENI

MEMALIAJ

KOLONJE

Karaburun

Llogara

TEPELENE

KELCYRE

PERMET

Piskal-

Shqeri

HIMARE

Parku

Natyror

Zheji

GJIROKASTER

Germenj-

Shelegur

Rezervati

Rrezome

LIBOHOVE

DELVINE

DROPULL

KONICA

SARANDE

FINIQ

Butrint

KONISPOL

IOANNINA

FILIATES

Map 1.1 Vision map according to the General National Plan "Shqipëria 2030"


BUKURESHT

LEGEND

PRISHTINË - NISH

Primary centre

Secondary centre

Tertiary centre

Airport

Main port

PRISHTINE

Economic area

Logistic hub

Scientific research center

Protected areas

Panoramic coastal road

Touristic village

SHKUP

UNESCO site

Forests

M A C E D O N I A

( F Y R O M )

B U L G A R I A

Soil with complex cultivation

Oil bearing fields

Oil refinery

Gas bearing fields

Proposed thermal power plant

Small hydropower plants

Main hydropower plants

Iron-nickel deposit

STAMBOLL

Active steel-nickel mine

Closed steel-nickel mine

Steel-nickel mine under study

Connection with Asia

Copper deposits

Copper mines

Copper enrichment plant

Chrome deposits

SELANIK

Active chrome mine

KASTORIA

Inactive chrome mine

Chrome mine under study

Chrome enrichment plant

Bitumen mine

Bitumen melting furnace

Coal deposits

G R E E C E

Non-metalic deposit

Vineyards

Fruit trees

Olive grooves

Landfill

Connection with

Southeastern Europe

Hotspots

Proposed landfill

Proposed gas line (GNP)

ATHINA


2Albania under the

European and regional

context of the Balkans

and the Mediterranean


Contents

41 2.1 Connection Corridors

50 2.2 Potentials and Challenges for Development

and Integration


Albania under the European

and regional context of the

Balkans and the Mediterranean

For the purposes of achieving a territorial

integration of the country and a balanced

distribution of flows within its territory,

planning connection, distribution corridors

and urban centres hierarchy is the foundation

GNP is built upon.

Developing a network of connection and

distribution corridors in the country has been

estimated according to three integration

levels; European connection and integration,

strengthening regional ties in the Balkans and

the Mediterranean, as well as interconnection

and permeability of the national territory.

The aim is to increase accessibility from crossborder

regions and beyond, by ensuring that

communication and exchange in urban centres

of national importance and access is fast,

reliable and straightforward.

2015 brought new objectives and strategic

guidelines for the development of the

transportation system in the Western Balkans,

the development of the regional transportation,

but also essential to the regional economic

and social development.

The Western Balkans Conference held in

August 2014 in Berlin, provided a political

framework for a more intensive development

of the transport infrastructure in the region.

Moreover, in the Western Balkans Summit

held in Vienna in August 2015, the leaders

of Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo,

FYROM, Montenegro and Serbia (The Western

Balkans Six, WB6) welcomed in particular

the substantial progress achieved in the

field of Transport Connectivity, especially the

agreement among the Western Balkans Six

Prime Ministers in Brussels, April 2015, on

the main regional transport network and the

following agreement (in Riga, June 2015) on:

(i) the extension of the Main Corridors of the

Trans-European Transport Network in the

Western Balkans corridors (Mediterranean,

Eastern/Eastern Mediterranean and the Rhine/

Danube Corridors); (ii) the commitment to

implement a list of pre-identified infrastructure

projects and “soft” measures by 2020 and (iii)

the appointment corridor coordinators.

This agreement - the Connectivity Agenda

- will improve connectivity between the

Western Balkan countries and the EU

network, through the facilities provided by the

European Commission.

40


The Western Balkan countries recognized the

importance of an effective implementation of

the project in cooperation with the respective

International Financial Institution.

• The National Development Plan/National

Package of Strategic Relevance Projects

(National Single Project Pipeline) is designed

in accordance with the methodology

and recommendations of the European

Commission in order to strengthen

development policies in the national context

in compliance with the NSDI II (national

priority policies) and the regional context

(Connectivity Agenda), identifying, preparing

and selecting projects in the energy,

transport, environment and social sectors.

• The National Development Plan (NDP)/

National Package of Strategic Relevance

Projects (National Single Project Pipeline)

includes 41 projects for 2015 (17 projects in

the Connectivity Agenda/Berlin Process & 24

projects of National Relevance), amounting to

a total of 2.2 Billion Euros.

• The Government of Albania drafted the

first NDP/National Package of Strategic

Relevance Projects (NSPP) in 2015, a

package which covers four strategic sectors:

transport, energy, environment and social

infrastructure under the regional investment

projects as part of the Berlin Process. By

early September 2015, the total number of

submitted projects fiches amounted to 112.

After the evaluation within the framework of

evaluation methodology (second evaluation

component/maturity) the number was

reduced to 39 projects of Strategic Relevance.

The National Investment Council in its

meeting of December 9th, 2015 approved

the National Package of Strategic Relevance

Projects (SPP/2015) with 39 projects -

which was also submitted to the European

Commission.

The process to update and design a Unique

Project Package (UPP) has already started

for 2016. The Strategic Planning Committee

Secretariat is coordinating with the line

ministries to initially draft Sectorial Project

Packages and then compile a National

Package. All line ministries and relevant

institutions for the 4 WBIF sectors of

transport, energy, environment (water and

sewerage, flood protection, air pollution) and

social sector (education & sport; healthcare,

art-culture; support for prisons; housing) are

involved in the process.

2.1 Connection Corridors

In the European context, Albania's geographic

location favours the deployment of short

connecting roads that cross Europe, connect

member states at the borders of the

continent, and also Asia and North Africa. The

famous ancient Via Egnatia and the harbours

established in the Albanian coastline since

antiquity are early indicators of this. It is

deemed of relevance to render concrete the

European “central axis” roads that connect

the Northern Europe and Southern Europe

countries or the Gulf countries.

Albania has hardly benefited from this

advantageous position based on the fact also

that the connection corridors of the member

states have been built by bypassing Albania.

The political context and the country's

long isolation have been the main factors

which have hindered integration in the core

network of Pan-European corridors, but the

pace to become part of this network has

been low even 25 years after the political and

economic liberalization. No strategic plans,

which provide a long-term development

vision, have been in place to make this

geographical factor active and positive for

the country’s development and integration

to Europe. Now, Albania is in front of the

concrete picture of the corridors of European

Union countries, TEN-T 10 .

10

Network of Trans-European Transport (TEN-T) is a set of planned strategic networks of road, rail, air and water transport in

the European Union. TEN-T networks are part of a wider system of Trans-European Networks (TENs), including a network of

telecommunications (eTEN) and a proposed energy network (TEN-E or Ten-Energy).

TEN-T provides coordinated improvements to major roads, railways, waterways, airports, sea ports, inland ports and traffic

management systems, providing long-distance roads at, high speed, integrated and intermodal roads.

41


Figure 2.1 Pan-European Corridors

Cartagena

Murcia

Palermo

Valletta

Bari

Taranto

Naples

Rome

Ravenna

Ancona

Bologna

La Spezia

Livorno

Genova

Turin

Milan

Novara

Verona

Innsbruck

Munich

Stuttgart

Metz


Prague

Ostava

Passau

Wels/Linz

Basel

Venice

Udine

Koper

Rijeka

Klagenfurt

Zagreb

Vienna

Bratislava

Katowice

Warsaw

Kaunas

Vilnius

Gdynia/Gdansk

Poznan

Szczecin/Swinoujscie

Dresden

Wroclaw

Riga

Ventspils

Klaipeda

Tallinn

Helsinki

Hamina Kotka

Turku Naantali

Stockholm

Malmö

Copenhagen

Oslo

Hamburg

Hannover

Magdeburg

Bremen

Amsterdam

Utrecht Osnabrück

Rotterdam

Gent

Calais

Dover

Le Havre

Southampton

London

Birmingham

Liverpool

Manchester

Cork

Dublin

Belfast

Glasgow

Edinburgh

Felixstowe

Paris

Bordeaux

Vitoria

Bilbao

Madrid

Zaragoza

Seville

Algeciras

Sines

Lisbon

Aveiro

Porto

Valladolid

Barcelona

Tarragona

Valencia

Perpignan

Marseille

Lyon

Dijon

Rostock

Zilina

Brno

Arad

Timișoara

Brașov

Craiova

Constanța

Sulina

Burgas

Limassol

Lefkosia

Gothenburg

Trelleborg

Örebro

Gioia Tauro

Cartagena

Murcia

Dover

Le Havre

Southampton

London

Birmingham

Liverpool

Manchester

Cork

Dublin

Belfast

Glasgow

Edinburgh

Felixstowe

Paris

Bordeaux

Vitoria

Bilbao

Madrid

Zaragoza

Seville

Algeciras

Sines

Lisbon

Aveiro

Porto

Valladolid

Barcelona

Tarragona

Valencia

Budapest

Bucharest

Thessaloniki

Athens/Piraeus

Igoumenitsa

Patras

Gioia Tauro

Antequera/Bobadilla

Baltic - Adriatic

North Sea-Baltic

Mediterranean

Orient/East - Med

Scandinavian-Mediterranean

Rhine-Alpine

Atlantic

North Sea-Mediterranean

Rhine-Danube

Palermo

Ravenna

Ancona

Livorno


Graz

Gdynia/Gdansk

Dresden

Klaipeda

ück

Ljubljana

Trieste

Nuremberg

Regensburg

Strasbourg

Frankfurt/Oder

Berlin

Mannheim

Luxembourg

Frankfurt

sseldorf

Cologne

Würzburg

Zeebrugge

Brussels

Lille

Antwerp

Calais

Liege

Gent


These Pan-European corridors aim at

developing a "sound and competitive economy"

of member states. As stated in the European

Commission report on the Core Network

Corridors, 2013, these Pan-European

corridors are the basis for modal integration,

interoperability, coordinated development and

management of infrastructure.

The strategy for the construction of these

corridors will allow investments and

infrastructure works to be synchronized, to

support efficient, innovative services and

multimodal transport, including railway

services for medium and long distances.

The main Pan-European Corridors are:

Baltic – Adriatic Corridor 11 ,

North-Sea Baltic Corridor 12 ,

North Sea – Mediterranean Corridor 13 ,

Atlantic Corridor 14

Rhine - Alpine Corridor 15 ,

Rhine – Danube Corridor 16 which connect EU

countries, but which can be reached by our

country through the Asiatic – Mediterranean

Corridor, Mediterranean Corridor and

through sea routes by the Scandinavian –

Mediterranean Corridor 17 .

The Mediterranean Corridor connects the

south-western region of the Mediterranean

with the border Ukraine – Hungary, and

then passes the coasts of Spain, France and

through the Alps to the East through Italy,

Slovenia and Croatia. This corridor, which is

3000 km, long aims at providing a multimodal

link between western Mediterranean harbours

and the centre of EU. In addition, it will create

the East - West connection through the

southern part of the EU, contributing to the

inter-modality of sensitive areas such as the

Pyrenees and the Alps, and will connect some

of the major urban areas of the EU through

high-speed trains.

The vertical national axes oriented North-

South connect Albania with Montenegro and

Croatia, enabling connection to this corridor.

This link through Albania already exists, but in

order to be effective it should be strengthened

further. It shortens the links between the

Central European and South-eastern European

countries, and at the Mediterranean region

level it materializes the blue corridor in the

Albanian territory.

The Asian - Mediterranean Corridor is

extended northwest and southeast, connecting

Central Europe to the marine interfaces

of North Sea, Baltic Sea, Black Sea and

Mediterranean Sea, thus optimizing the

use of harbours and coastal cities of these

countries and sea routes. This corridor

promotes the development of port cities as

the main multimodal and logistic platforms

and improves the multimodal connections of

major economic centres in Central Europe

with the coastal part, using rivers such as the

Elbe. Additionally, the corridor will provide

connection to Cyprus.

11

This corridor is 2,400 km long and will connect the Baltic ports in Poland with the ports of the Adriatic Sea. It begins in the

ports of Gdansk and Gdynia, connecting through developed economic centres cities like Warsaw, Vienna, Venice, Trieste and

Ravenna.

12

This corridor which is 3200 km long will connect the ports of the eastern coast of the Baltic Sea with the North Sea ports.

13

North Sea - Mediterranean Corridor extends from Ireland and the north of the United Kingdom through the Netherlands,

Belgium and Luxembourg to the Mediterranean Sea in southern France.

14

This diagonal corridor will connect the Iberian Peninsula with France and Germany, with high-speed and conventional

railways, ensuring continuity of networks between Lisbon, Madrid, Paris and Strasbourg/Mannheim.

15

This north - south corridor is one of the busiest streets of goods in Europe, connecting the ports of the North Sea,

Rotterdam and Antwerp with the Mediterranean countries in Genoa, via Switzerland and some of the most major Western

economic centres of EU.

16

This corridor will provide the main east - west link between European countries, connecting France and Germany, Austria,

Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria along the rivers Danube and Maine to the Black Sea, thereby

improving high-speed railway infrastructure and waterways road links.

17

This north - south corridor is an important axis for the European economy that links major urban centres in Germany and

Italy with Scandinavia and the Mediterranean.

43


Developing the national East - West oriented

axis creates the national horizontal axis

of Albania that together with the shipping

transport and strengthening of Albanian

harbours completes the connection of East and

West. This axis is pictured in the link between

Istanbul, as the Gate to Asia, and Rome and

Madrid as the main centres of Western Europe.

Being part of this network comes as a

necessity not only for the integration of the

country under accession process, but also

to develop the country's economy. It is not

only an obligation, but also in the interest

of a sustainable development for Albania to

prioritize, through the GNP (but also through

policies, plans and strategies, the design of

a legal framework, etc.), to guide the country

towards integration with the infrastructure of

European countries. In addition, the proposal

of local infrastructure projects, which are

in line with the European infrastructure,

enables the country to access the funds for

countries under the pre-accession process

for the purposes of accomplishing these

infrastructures.

For the Balkans, Albania is part of the Pan-

European area of the Adriatic – Ionian Sea,

which connects, via corridor VIII, the Pan-

European transport area of the Black Sea.

The corridor starts at the harbour of Durres,

crosses Tirana and Skopje (FYROM), further

to Sofia (Bulgaria) and to the Bulgarian

harbours of Burgas and Varna in the Black

Sea 18 . Corridor X, as a link between Austria

and Greece along with Corridor IV, in Sofia -

Plovdiv, integrates the corridor VIII in the main

links of Pan-European transport corridors.

The main south-eastern axes, which connect

the EU countries to the Balkans/Turkey/

Caspian Sea/Egypt and the Red Sea, are of

particular relevance and are also pictured

in the links that are permeated through our

country. Simultaneously, there are the routes

that connect the Black Sea to the Adriatic

Sea. They include the connection of the

Albanian harbours to Varna’s and Burga’s

harbours with the harbours of Mediterranean

countries, Italy and Spain.

In order to strengthen the ties with its

European partners, the Government of Albania

signed a Memorandum of Understanding for

the Core Network on 11 June 2003, creating

the South East Europe Transport Observatory

(SEETO), in order to: "Promote cooperation

for the development of the main and auxiliary

multi-modal infrastructure and the Regional

Network of Transportation of the Southeast

Europe. The scope is to also promote and

enhance local capacity for the implementation

of investment programs, the management and

collection of data and analysis on the Regional

Transport Network” 19 .

By joining this organization, Albania aims

to facilitate the process of integration in

the South-eastern Europe and to meet

the objectives set out by the Stabilization

Association Agreement (SAA), including

segments of the Pan-European corridors;

Corridor IV, V, VII, X and specifically Corridor

VIII (Durres – Varna, through Tirana),

including Durres and Vlora harbours, and the

international airport of Tirana.

Ten multimodal transport corridors of

European interest establish the basis for the

development of infrastructure in South-eastern

Europe, where Albania has an advantageous

position due to the outflows in the Adriatic and

Ionian Sea through its maritime harbours.

18

Status of the Pan-European Corridors and Areas by the European Commission TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE

DEVELOPMENT FOR A WIDER EUROPE SEMINAR PARIS 27-28 NOVEMBER 2003.

19

EuropeAid/127468/C/SER/AL, First Five-Year Review Of Albanian National Transport Plan (ANTP), Draft final report part III,

June 2010.

44


In 2010, following the final draft of ANTP II, the

main corridors of importance for Albania in

this report were identified as follows:

• Northern-southern corridor, connection

between Greece and Montenegro, through

Hani i Hotit and Kakavija border crossing

points in Shkodra and Gjirokastra respectively.

This corridor is 405 km long.

• The main eastern-western corridor between

the harbour of Durres and FYROM, part of

corridor VIII.

• Durres - Kukes - Morine as one of the

corridors with the highest impact on the region

due to the connection, through Pristina, with

corridor X.

Furthermore, in 2014, according to the report

of the MTI on infrastructure priority projects

for 2014, the priority projects regarding road

transport were introduced as follows:

•Blue Corridor

Velipoja - Shengjin

Shengjin - Patok

Patok - Durres

Durres - Divjaka

Divjaka - Seman

Seman - Vlora

Vlora - Dhermi

Dhermi - Saranda

Saranda - Butrint

• Arbri Road

• Road Gjirokastra – Saranda

Figure 2.2 SEETO Road Network

Rijeka

Zagreb

Osijek

Zadar

Belgrade

Sarajevo

Sibenik

Nis

Dubrovnik

Podgorica

Pristina

Skopje

Tirana

Existing

Planned

45

0 100km

March 2001


Zagreb

Rijeka

Osijek

Zadar

Belgrade

Sarajevo

Sibenik

Nis

Dubrovnik

Podgorica

Pristina

Skopje

Tirana

Existing

Planned

0 100km

March 2001

Regarding rail transport, the same document has

foreseen the revitalization of the following segments:

Tirana - Rinas (airport) - Durres

Durres - Vlora

Durres - Hani i Hotit (bordering Montenegro)

Durres - Lin, Pogradec (bordering FYROM). 20

Figure 2.3 SEETO Railway Network

The proposals of GNP “Shqipëria 2030” are based on

the sectorial strategies of the Ministry of Transport

and Infrastructure and complement the strategic goal:

Albania, an interconnecting centre among the Balkans

and Europe and a factor of stability in the region.

The provision of effective connections with regional and

European countries, in order to enable a sustainable

growing and competitive economy in the region, is vital

for Albania. In this framework, GNP sets as a national

priority:

• Finalizing and implementing the national road corridors

connecting Albania to the network of Pan-European

corridors and TEN-T Core Network and SEETO;

20

FYROM has endorsed an agreement with the Spanish company “Tipsa” and French company “Louis Berger”

regarding the project for the railway construction from Kerçova to Lin, as part of corridor VIII. The railway section

of this corridor is due to be completed in 2022 and will cost up to 350 million Euros.

46


• Finalizing and implementing the national railway

corridors connecting Albania to the network of

Pan-European corridors and TEN-T and SEETO;

• Expanding and strengthening the existing

airport and establishing new airports of national

and regional importance, associated with

integrated air services in compliance with the

policy of “A single European Sky”;

• Establishing multimodal terminals in the port

cities, integrating the modalities of maritime, air,

rail and road transport;

• Strengthening the existing port units of national

and regional importance harbours, with the

aim of enhancing their capacity for competitive

processing and export of goods and transport

of passengers for the region of the Balkans and

the Mediterranean. Increasing the number of

tourist marines in accordance with the physical

capacity of the Albanian coastline, aiming to

develop a first-class coastal tourist sector, which

is environmental friendly and compliant with the

physical territorial features of the natural and

urban landscape of our coast.

Note: The Southern airport, as also expressed in the text

below, will be duly determined after a careful feasibility

study to be carried out for this specific purpose.

Figure 2.4 Ports and airports network

Zagreb

Pula

Rijeka

Banja Luka

Osijek

Belgrade

Zadar

Sibenik

Sarajevo

Nis

Dubrovnik

Tivat

Podgorica

Kukës

Pristina

Skopje

Tirana

Ohrid

Airports

Ports

Inland ports

Gjirokastër

0 100km

March 2001


Road transport

GNP sets as a strategic priority the implementation and finalization of the strategic projects

connecting Albania to Europe:

- Adriatic Ionian highway - Muriqan, Shkodra - Gjirokastra, Kakavija;

- Northern-Southern highway, the connection between Montenegro and Greece, from Hani i

Hotit in Shkodra to Gjirokastra through the border crossing point of Kakavija, (405 km long);

- Coastal landscape road, a tourist coastal road with low environmental impact connecting

the coastal localities (Velipoja - Shengjin, Shengjin - Patok, Patok - Durres,

Durres - Divjaka, Divjaka - Seman, Seman - Vlora, Vlora - Dhermi, Dhermi - Saranda,

Saranda - Butrint) 21 ;

- Corridor VIII, as a primary road for the transportation of goods (shortest connection of the

Mediterranean Sea with the Black Sea; Durres Varna/Durres - Istanbul) and "Via Egnatia" as

a historical road of tourist importance;

- Central Axis, a road project that passes through Elbasan - Berat - Gjirokastra axis;

- Arbri Road (Tirana - Dibra - FYROM) as a branch of Corridor VIII;

- Nation’s Road (Durres - Kukes - Pristina - Nish) as one of the corridors with the highest

impact on the region due to the connection, through Pristina, with Corridor X.

Rail transport

GNP prioritizes:

• A full restructuring of the system under Directive 2012/34 /EC, as amended.

• A full reconstruction of the existing system, according to the technical specifications

required by:

- The Safety Directive 2016/798/EC

- The Interoperability Directive 2016/797/EC

• A direct long-distance intercity movement and cross-border movement.

• An establishment of multimodal systems:

- Connection of airports with rail transport.

The first project in this regard: the connection of the "Mother Teresa" airport to the

rail network;

- Connection of the railway lines with major ports.

The first project in this regard: the connection of the rail network to the port of Vlora,

Durres and Shengjin;

- Connection of the rail network to the border-crossing points, Montenegro, FYROM

and Greece.

- Enabling the border connection with Greece through rail network as an entry point

to the South - North Balkan railway corridor. From there, it is enabled the rail

transport Thessaloniki - Podgorica and beyond.

21

According to the report of the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure on infrastructure priority projects for 2014.

48


Air and maritime transport

• Strengthening the existing harbour facilities, harbours of national and regional

relevance, in order to enhance their capacities in processing and exporting goods

and transport of passengers to competitive levels for the region of the Balkans

and the Mediterranean. Increasing the number of tourist marines, in accordance

with the physical capacity of the Albanian coastline, aiming to develop a first-class

tourist sector, which is environmental friendly and compliant with the physical

territorial features of the natural and urban landscape of our coast.

• Developing the 4 main harbours in Albania as starting points of maritime

highways:

- Durres Harbour (mixed functions: touristic, passengers, goods and fishing, Porto

Romano energy-related harbour);

- Vlora Harbour (mixed functions: touristic, passengers, goods and fishing.

Petrolifera energy-related harbour);

- Shengjin Harbour (mixed functions: touristic, passengers and fishing);

- Saranda Harbour (mixed functions: touristic, passengers and fishing).

In the field of air transport, a feasibility study is recommended for the purpose of

re/using the existing airport runaways, such as Vlora, Gjadri, and Korça, in support

of air transport.

GNP prioritizes the construction of a third international airport southward, other

than the one of Tirana and Kukes (the latter has been approved during the drafting

of the GNP and in the same line as foreseen by GNP). This airport would make the

southern access gate of Albania more accessible and competitive in the region in

terms of economic development in the field of tourism and beyond.

Energy corridors

Strategic projects in the construction of energy corridors:

• TAP - Trans Adriatic Pipeline;

• IAP - Ionian Adriatic Pipeline. It will cross the western part of Albania, from

Fier to Shkodra towards Montenegro with two branches in Ulcinj and Podgorica,

whereas in the south it complements the connection among Fier-Gjirokastra-

Saranda

• IAP-Kosovo. IAP pipeline is branched off in the region of Shkodra - Lezha, to

supply Kosovo through Kukes, forming the so-called Western Balkans Gas Ring;

The above mentioned projects are supported and further detailed by the National

Sectorial Plan on Natural Gas in Albania.

• The 400 kV interconnection line Fier – Elbasan – FYROM.

49


Industrial axis

Sun belt

Expected expansion lines

2.2 Potentials and

Challenges for Development

and Integration

Albania's accession in some European

programs such as the IPA Adriatic Ionian,

Interreg Med Program, IPA Cross-border,

requires the establishment of appropriate

territorial and administrative facilities, capable

of accessing the funding of these programs.

The realization of these projects, the

establishment of new territorial partnerships

in the European context, investments in

corridors that connect us to the main

50

Figure 2.5 Albania’s position compared to the economic corridors of European relevance

European corridors and strengthening

infrastructural links with neighbouring

countries, partners in the Balkans, actually

places Albania at the intersection of important

European axes: horizontal axis Madrid - Rome

- Istanbul, linkage between the Black Sea and

the Mediterranean Sea and the vertical axis,

Central Europe - North Africa and the Eastern

countries.

Under the implementation of the European

Union project and the unification of all

economic, physical, social and cultural

standards, the Balkan countries undergoing

the accession process, follow cross-border

cooperation policies with their neighbours.


200 km

BRASIL

* This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with

UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence

Northern Periphery and Arctic

Arctic Ocean

Europian Union’s macroregional

strategy

Sea basin

+ Greenland

ICELAND

EU member state

Baltic Sea macro-region

Non-EU member state

FINLAND

Atlantic Area

North Sea

Eligible area of a

transnational programme

Eligible area in a EU

member state

Eligible area in a

non-EU member state

IRELAND

Atlantic Ocean

North Sea

NORWAY

DENMARK

SWEDEN

Baltic Sea

ESTONIA

LATVIA

LITHUANIA

RUSSIA

BELARUS

RUSSIA

North West Europe

Alpine Space

Central Europe

UNITED KINGDOM

NETHERLANDS

GERMANY

BELGIUM

POLAND

Danube macro-region

UKRAINE

LUXEMBOURG

CZECH REPUBLIC

South West Europe

+ Azores-Madeira-Canary Islands

Mediterranean

Adrion

Danube Region

Balkan - Mediterranean

PORTUGAL

SPAIN

FRANCE

Alpine macro-region

ANDORRA

SWITZERLAND

MONACO

Adriatic and

Ionian macro-region

Mediterranean Sea

LIECHTENSTEIN

AUSTRIA

ITALY

SLOVENIA

SLOVAKIA

HUNGARY

CROATIA

BOSNIA ANDSERBIA

HERZEGOVINA

MONTE-

NEGRO KOSOVO*

FYROM

ALBANIA

Adriatic and

Ionian Seas GREECE

ROMANIA

BULGARIA

MOLDAVIA

Black Sea

TURKEY

CYPRUS

500 km

Sources : DG REGIO, Interact

Sources : Interact, DG REGIO, DG MARE

MALTA

Figure 2.6 (a) Mediterranean and Balkans projects

including Albania: Balkans, Mediterranean, Adriatic

and Ionian seas and the cross-border projects in the

Danube macro-region

Figure 2.6 (b) Macro-regional strategies and sea

basins. Source: European Commission, Territorial

Cooperation in Europe, A Historical Perspective,

July 2015.

Albania, as a country aiming to become part

of the larger European family, follows and

implements the cross-regional policies with the

neighbouring countries such as Montenegro,

Kosovo, FYROM, Greece and Italy. The European

Union, on behalf of cooperative strategies

implementation, financially and technically

supports these countries. The strategic draftreports

(IPA Cross-border) for the period 2014

- 2020, show that Albania will be provided with

a financial support of 104,512,029 Euros. 22

This program enables and promotes crossregional

cooperation in all potential fields

such as economic areas, road infrastructure,

healthcare and education infrastructure,

culture, protection of values and natural,

historical and cultural heritage monuments.

Albania, being among the rare countries in the

region and beyond, is bordered with Albanian

population. This is a significant fact for the

good cooperation tradition, which cross-border

area residents in Albania have historically had

with residents of neighbouring cross-border

areas. CBS IPA II Programme of the European

Community focuses on further strengthening

these significant relations to further develop

a sustainable economy, preserve regional

stability and protect historical, socio-cultural

and natural values of these cross-border areas.

Given the multiple and strong economic and

socio-cultural relations between Albanian

cities, the implementation of collaborative

strategies in Albania, beyond residents and

local governments involved in the IPA CBS II,

has a positive impact, reflecting their effect on

the entire territory of Albania.

22

Albania - Greece, €42,312,029; Albania - FYROM, €11,900,000 + €30,000,000 of the 400 kV line; Albania- Kosovo, €8,400,000;

Albania - Montenegro, €11,900,000.

51


ITALY

HUNGARY

Croatia-Serbia

Hungary-Serbia

ROMANIA

Croatia-Bosnia

Romania-Serbia

Serbia-BosniaCROATIA

Bosnia-Montenegro

Adriatic Sea

BOSNIA AND

HERZEGOVINA

Italy-Albania-Montenegro

MONTE-

NEGRO

SERBIA

KOSOVO

ALBANIA

FYROM

Serbia-Montenegro

Bulgaria-Serbia

BULGARIA

Greece-FYROM

Bulgaria-FYROM

Albania-Kosovo

Bulgaria-Turkey

IPA CBC 2014-2020 programme

IPA CBC programme between

non EU countries

EU member state

Non EU member state

Black Sea

TURKEY

Albania-Montenegro

GREECE

Greece-Albania

FYROM-Albania

Aegean Sea

Figure 2.7 Figure 2.7 IPA CROSS

Border projects: Italy-Albania-

Montenegro, Albania-Kosovo,

Albania-Montenegro, Albania-

FYROM, Albania-Greece

Montenegro-Kosovo

Ionan Sea

Mediterranean Sea

200 km

Sources : DG REGIO, INTERACT

* This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with

UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence

KUKËS - PRISHTINË

SHKODËR - PODGORICË

PODGORICE

GJAKOVE

BAR

Tropojë

PRIZREN

DIBËR - SHKUP

ULQIN

Shkodër

Lezhë

Kukës

Dibër

GOSTIVAR

TETOVE

SHKUP

DEBAR

POGRADEC - STRUGË

Figure 2.8 Cross-border and

national urban centres that

should increase cooperation

under IPACB projects

Durrës

Pogradec

STRUGA

BITOLA

EDESA

Source: European Comission,

Territorial Cooperation in

Europe, A Historical Perspective,

July 2015. Elaborated by ©NTPA

Vlorë

Korçë

KASTORIA

Gjirokastër

Sarandë

Ksamil

Konispol

JANINE

52

GJIROKASTËR - JANINË


Figure 2.9 9 Possibilities for Albania to integrate and establish connections in the European urban centres hierarchy map

classified as per MEGA 1 and 2 cities, A scenario.

Source: ET2050 Territorial Scenarios and Visions for Europe Final Report, 30/06/2014. Interpretation and elaboration: ©NTPA

53


3Territorial systems


Contents

56

58

60

62

62

64

71

84

86

87

91

94

96

99

107

108

108

112

123

126

133

133

145

153

Main findings and guidelines of GNP for the territorial

systems

Current structure and territorial organization trend

in Albania

Territorial organization by the GNP

3.1 Urban System

3.1.1 Polycentric, intelligent and comprehensive

development based on European models

3.1.2 The criteria for the urban system organization

3.1.3 Strategic territorial proposals for urban centres

3.2 Natural System

3.2.1 The approach of the General National Plan

Shqipëria 2030

3.2.2 The natural system as an element for diversification

and interconnection of economic sectors

3.2.3 Proposals

3.3 Agricultural System

3.3.1 Drawbacks of the agricultural sector in the country

3.3.2 The approach of the General National Plan on the

agricultural sector

3.3.3 GNP proposals for the agricultural system

3.4 Water System

3.4.1 National water framework and current context

3.4.2 Diversity of water use

3.4.3 The impact of climate changes on the water system

3.4.4 GNP recommendations on the water system

3.5 Infrastructure System

3.5.1 Transport Infrastructure System

3.5.2 Energy

3.5.3 Electronic Telecommunication Infrastructure/ICT


Territorial Systems

Main findings and guidelines of GNP for

the territorial systems

• The territorial and territorial structure of

Albania is strongly influenced by the focus of

investments and the existing infrastructure,

which have affected the establishment and

concentration of work places and settlements.

• The territorial and territorial structure is also

affected by the employment structure, which

has suffered changes during the last 25 years;

- Firstly, due to the changes of the economic

and political model, from a society with a

centralized economy and based on stateowned

property to a model based on free trade

and private property;

- Secondly, the employment structure has

also changed due to investments that are

influenced by the proximity and quality of the

connecting and communication infrastructure,

auxiliary services or qualifications, and the

intellectual potential of employable people

provided by specific areas and cities or towns.

• The territory is influenced by the movement

of population from rural and suburban areas to

the urbanized centres in the Western Lowland

of the country and by a high concentration of

the population in the central region, mainly in

the Tirana - Durres area. The result of these

demographic, social and economic changes

has led to a monocentric development of

the country, sharp disparities of economic

and social development, as well as urban

distribution to the detriment of agricultural

lands and vacant natural areas. The rapid

urbanization is concurrently associated

with a high concentration of businesses and

population, reaching to some regions such

as Tirana - Durres, an adequate density

and concentration for satisfactory economic

performance.

• This mode of development carried out under

the“laissez-faire" model has put high pressure

on the demand for housing in rapidly urbanized

areas, insufficiency of the infrastructure for

social, educational and health services, and it

has also led to an increase of the demand for

transport. Meanwhile, in the peripheral areas

the gap of social and economic inequalities

has deepened.

Regarding the territorial dimension, GNP

56


supports the polycentric, comprehensive

and densifying territorial development for

the purpose of smart growth, mitigation of

economic and social disparities with the aim

of a balanced territorial development.

GNP underlines the main role of the Tirana

- Durres economic pole for the economic

growth it provides at national level. To ensure

a sustainable development in its economic

performance, this region should be developed

towards balanced consolidation, renewal,

conservation and re-development oriented

interventions.

• However, some of the positive features

of economic growth of the Tirana - Durres

economic pole, which serve to attract

investments in this area, should be assessed

as a reference model for the development of

other cities or towns, with a view to creating

new poles of economic development. Thus,

this can serve to ensure the mitigation of

unequal national development. Important

cities regarding the potentials they provide

for the establishment of connecting and

communication infrastructure, human

intellectual potential, tradition of historical

and cultural development such as Shkodra,

Lezha, Vlora, Fier, Saranda, Gjirokastra,

Elbasan, Berat, Korça, Pogradec, along

with the surrounding urban centres, may

be economically developed at comparative

levels with Tirana - Durres. Their coordinated

development may balance the monocentric

attraction to the central region of the country.

• The coastal area region of the country is

recognized by GNP as a key region of national

importance regarding its paramount role in

the sector of tourism, energy, agriculture and

infrastructure. The interventions in this region

should be conducted following a conservation

character for the areas of historical, cultural

and environmental heritage relevance, as

well as interventions to consolidate the

areas formed from urban morphology and

with a potential for re-development, the

newly urbanized areas with no quality and to

densify the existing urban areas within their

accommodation capacity, without prejudice to

the characteristic features of the natural and

historical landscape.

• Urban distribution, population movement

from east to west, deep territorial changes in

the structure of the main economic sectors of

the country, industry, tourism, agriculture and

so on, have influenced the substantial change

of the natural, historical, cultural and urban

landscape of the Albanian coastal region. In

order to protect this ecosystem esteemed as

unique within the Mediterranean region, GNP

has established:

1. The Blue Line which aims at:

- protecting, from the prohibited uses the

coastal area, as defined by the sectorial

legislation on the protection of water

resources;

- monitoring the activities for economic

purposes in the area of the coastline;

2. Recognition and protection of the natural

landscape values of the territory extending

from the coastline to the crest of the first hill/

mountain range.

• The demands to increase employment

and develop the economic sectors towards

a territorial friendly economy, suggest an

approach of mainstreaming policies that

promote cooperation among the services,

agricultural, tourist, energy sectors, and

promote novelty and cooperation and expertise

among them. Moreover, it is necessary to

increase and improve access to the labour

market of the highest hierarchies’ urban

centres from the surrounding territories.

GNP highlights the modalities according

to which rural potential may be developed,

empowering the attributes of tourism as per

the local characteristics of the area, developing

agriculture, strengthening local enterprises,

strengthening and diversifying their services,

and developing the marina so that the local

centres and locations within the tertiary cities

or towns can increase their relevance with a

focus on local investments, development of

economic activities and housing.

• “Doing nothing” scenario means a

continuum in the existing conditions, namely

a scenario without a General National Plan

in the next 15 years, if we refer to the study

“Population projections, 2011-2031” of Census

2011, with a growth of about 30% in the

number of population settled only in the region

57


of Tirana, the negative effects in the territory

will increase, as there is a higher inability to

provide coverage with qualitative services.

Simultaneously, this aspect will be associated

with the continuous significant decline in the

number of population in other cities or towns

and a decline in their economic development.

• “Doing something” scenario, through

the GNP, provides an alternative to the

above scenario. The scenario of drafting

and implementing the GNP stimulates the

development of 7 regional development poles

through the identification and prioritization

of policies to be implemented to attract and

generate investments, jobs and to encourage

people to live and work in these regions. It

means that while the metropolitan area of

Tirana increases its economic contribution

at national level, its population will increase

at stable paces, while the other regions will

start to increase the importance of their

economic contribution compared to the

national revenues. Given the round trips for

commuting purposes, the city of Tirana and

the Tirana - Durres metropolitan area is

characterized by a high suburban development

in its surroundings, thus putting pressure and

often damaging the city’s natural and urban

landscape.

• While the pace of regional development

is accelerated, new demands for housing,

services, spaces for allocation or expansion of

economic sectors, infrastructure and beyond

will arise. GNP proposes that the development

of the territorial-territorial structure should be

supported by the development of the national

transport network, which provides improved

service of public transport and strengthens

access and permeability across the national

territory. This network should provide the

international link of the country via the

port cities with the neighbouring countries

of the Balkans region and beyond in the

Mediterranean and Europe.

Current structure and territorial

organization trend in Albania

The approximation based on the territorial

systems implies the acknowledgment

and organization of the territory through

networks, corridors, spaces, areas, nodes

of communication, interlinks of dependency

and communication flows. In order to identify

the basics of territorial development in

Albania, it is necessary to understand how the

territorial structure of Albania has changed

in the last 10-15 years and how this structure

is likely to be developed in the next 15 years.

A valuable contribution to this identification

has been given by INSTAT with the processing

of data from the Census 2011, as well as the

publications “A new urban rural classification

of Albanian population”, “Commuting for

work purposes”, “Typology of communes and

municipalities”, May 2014.

2014 marked a historical turning point in

the administrative-territorial organization

of Albania. On 31 July 2014 the Parliament

of Albania approved the Law 115/2014 “On

administrative - territorial division of the local

government units in the Republic of Albania”.

The new territorial division put an end to the

extreme administrative fragmentation of the

country, organizing the territory and local

government in only 61 municipalities.

Prior to this reform, Albania was

administratively divided into 12 regions,

65 municipalities and 308 communes. The

regions were geographically divided in 36

districts, which did no longer represent any

administrative unit from 2000 and onwards.

The municipalities and communes included

74 cities and 2,972 villages. The cities were

generally situated within the municipalities,

while villages were generally situated within

the communes, though there were exceptions.

During the last decade, changes that have

clearly affected the Albanian landscape may

be recapped as follows:

- major unequal changes of the population

and especially between the region of Tirana

– Durres that continues to gain population

compared to other urban areas, which, on

their part, continue to lose population;

- clear and strong trends of internal migration,

mainly explaining the non-uniform changes

of population;

- construction dynamics that do not follow the

course of population change, namely a larger

number of constructions takes place in areas

58


3 MACROREGIONS

12 COUNTIES

12 COUNTIES

12 COUNTIES

36 DISTRICTS

36 DISTRICTS

36 DISTRICTS

65 MUNICIPALITIES

65 MUNICIPALITIES

65 CITIES MUNICIPALITIES VILLAGES

CITIES VILLAGES

308 COMMUNES

308 COMMUNES

CITIES 308 COMMUNES VILLAGES

CITIES VILLAGES

Figure 3.1 Territorial structure 2000 - 2014, Source: INSTAT

CITIES

VILLAGES

CITIES

VILLAGES

4 MACROREGIONS

12 COUNTIES

12 COUNTIES

12 COUNTIES

61 MUNICIPALITIES

61 MUNICIPALITIES

61 MUNICIPALITIES

ADMINISTRATIVE UNITS

ADMINISTRATIVE UNITS

ADMINISTRATIVE UNITS

CITIES VILLAGES

CITIES VILLAGES

Figure 3.2 (a) Territorial organization for economic management purposes and territorial

planning 2016, as per 4 macroregions

61 URBAN CENTERS

61 URBAN CENTERS

CITIES

VILLAGES

6 MACROREGIONS

61 URBAN CENTERS

PRIMARY

TERTIARY

PRIMARY

TERTIARY

PRIMARY

SECONDARY

SECONDARY

TERTIARY

SECONDARY

Figure 3.2 (b) Territorial organization for economic management purposes and territorial

planning 2016, as per 6 macroregions. Source: NTPA

59


with reduced population;

- deep territorial changes in the industrial

sector, which is losing many areas of

manufacturing such as in the sub-branches

of metallurgy and heavy machinery, while it

is also showing a process of new industrial

metropolitan activity.

As for the General National Plan, the

administrative territorial structure is of special

relevance to the territorial organization of the

country, because this structure is associated

with the establishment of key functions

regarding healthcare, educational, social,

infrastructure, economic, administrative and

other related services, which are closely linked

to the enhancement of citizens’ quality of life,

smart urban development (efficient, cohesive)

and mitigation of regional disparities.

The method of governance and territorial

organization is increasingly influenced by

two major drivers: economy, which is related

to the need to provide goods and services

for an increasingly growing population, as

well as politics, which is related to the need

for governance and power of administration

of economic goods. However, following

globalization and rapid growth of urbanization,

natural resources become much scarcer in

support of the ever increasing population.

Ensuring a sustainable continuation of life and

its quality is being questioned during the last

decades, when global warming and climate

changes effects have become even more

visible and are largely conditioning the life of

populations. Therefore, a “new” guiding driver

for the territorial organization and governance

is the environment, whose exploitation to

provide for the present without prejudicing

the future generations, ensures a sustainable,

environmental friendly development. In

order to ensure this, the economy and new

governmental policies are growingly investing

on a growth based on innovative technology

and knowledge, which comprise the core

reaction to smart development.

Territorial organization by the GNP

As also defined by the Planning Regulation 23 ,

the GNP for the territorial organization for

planning purposes at national level, identifies

five territorial systems:

- URBAN system, which is formed by the

unification of urban territories and bordered by

the green line.

- WATER system, which is the entirety of

underground and surface water sources, which

contains all water bodies, including shores as

per the definitions of the special legislation.

The water system is formed by the network of

basic category of “water” land use (U).

- AGRICULTURAL system is composed of

agricultural land occupied by arable land,

plants, orchards, vineries and olive groves,

wherever it is located and with fertility as a

AGRARIAN ECONOMY MARKET ECONOMY KNOWLEDGE ECONOMY

Local resources based

organization.

Network - based

organization.

Science and technology based

organization; Environmental Protection.

Industrial Development

Green Development

Figure 3.3 Territorial organization as per the driving forces and future trends

23

Council of Ministers Decision no. 671, dated 29/07/2015.

60


THE PAST

THE FUTURE

TIRANË

Figure 3.4 Current organization of the systems in

zones, corridors and centres, and their overlapping

Figure 3.5 Future organization of the systems in zones,

corridors and centres, and their overlapping

- Monocentric

development, strong

polarization towards the

centre, high concentration

of the population and

economic activities in

Tirana.

- Depopulation of the

Eastern part of the

territory, movement and

concentration towards the

Western Lowland and the

capital.

- Albania integrated

into the region and

Europe, the national axis

part of the European

development network.

- Development of the

urban system towards

polycentrism, strong

economic regions that

communicate with and

complement each other

as well as with the main

cross-border urban

centres.

key feature, as well as channels and reservoirs

at its disposal. The agricultural system is formed

by the unification of lands with basic category

of “agriculture” land use (B). This system is a

result of the timely interaction between human

activities, for cultivations and constructions of

agricultural type within the territory. Zoning

of the agricultural system is based on land

production properties and on activities and

functions developed within this system in line

with the special legislation in force.

- NATURAL system, which is composed

of landscapes, untouched natural spaces,

ecological corridors and spaces that have a basic

category of “nature” use (N) and in line with the

special legislation.

- INFRASTRUCTURE system, which refers to

the main infrastructure networks at national,

regional and local level. The infrastructure

system is formed by the network of basic

category of “infrastructure” land use (IN).

These systems are organized based on relations

between centres, corridors and zones on the

basis of which the planning documents of

lower hierarchies will be detailed. They do

not comprise only definitions for the land use

development, but also opportunities for the

development of economic activities in accordance

with the primary characteristics of the systems.

61


3.1 Urban System

Main findings and guidelines of the

GNP for the urban and local centres

• Strengthening the critical mass of port cities

such as Shkodra, Lezha, Kukes, Durres, Vlora,

Gjirokastra-Saranda is crucial in view of the

polycentric development of the territory, but

also in terms of the supporting role these

cities will provide for the balanced national

economic growth.

• GNP identifies several strategic hubs. These

hubs will support and be supported by port

cities and will connect large surrounding

areas. The hubs identified are as follows:

Rrogozhina, Vora, Bajze, Koplik, Laç, Has,

Fushe Kruja, Lushnja, Porto Romano,

Roskovec, Patos, Ballsh, Orikum, Petrolifera,

Maliq, Prrenjas, Xarra, Himara.

• GNP recognizes the importance of

consolidation of the large peripheral and

central urban areas in the national territory,

in order to ensure a balanced territorial

development. These cities should serve as

focal centres that enhance the ties with their

surrounding rural areas.

• The General National Plan, depending on the

current and proposed status of urban centres,

with a view to ensuring territorial development

in accordance with the plan vision, proposes

consolidating, reinforcing, regenerating,

cooperating and empowering interventions for

urban centres.

3.1.1 Polycentric, smart and

comprehensive development based on

European models

Conclusions on the rate of urbanization in

Albania, following the elaboration of Census

2011 data, (INSTAT 2014):

1. In October 2011, the urban population of

Albania was reported to be 58.2% of the total

population as defined by the new EU typology.

Its value was 10% higher than that of the urban

population calculated in compliance with the

administrative requirements (cities defined by

law), 47.7 %.

2. While according to the administrative

structure of 2011, Albania had 74 cities

which were considered as urban areas, the

results based on the European classification

of the cells grid, show that urban areas are

37 in number (urban settlements defined as

continuous groups of cells, including at least

5,000 inhabitants).

3. Only 5 urban areas in Albania could be

classified with the status of “a city” as per

OECD definition on cities. They proved to be

Tirana, Durres, Shkodra, Elbasan and Vlora.

The city of Tirana includes 5 other local

government units: Dajti, Farka, Paskuqan,

Kamza and Kashar.

4. According to the new EU methodology on

measurement of the rate of urbanization

of local government units, only 10 local

government units resulted in Albania, which

are classified as urban areas (high density

areas); 57 areas of interim density and 306

rural local government units (low density

areas).

5. The Albanian statistical regions of NUTS 3

level (division compliant with the administrative

borders of regions) were classified based

on the new EU urban-rural typology. Only

the region of Tirana was reportedly “urban

dominant”. Durres and Vlora regions

were “interim”. Other regions were “rural

dominant”.

Two main features have characterized the

urban development trend in the last 25 years:

• Migration to the central region (Tirana -

Durres) and to the Western Lowland,

• Urban sprawl damaging agricultural and

vacant natural land.

62


Both these processes have resulted in the

monocentric development of the country, with

prominent features of economic and social

inequality.

This model of unstable urbanization was

associated with a diminution of urban life

quality. The absence of existing infrastructure,

roads, sanitation, schools and kindergartens

has posed more serious challenges to

most of the population which abandoned

their birth towns or villages for better living

conditions, together with the traditional urban

population. The territory, mainly in its eastern

and suburban areas, is characterized by a

high level of depopulation, absence of labour

force and, therefore, poverty. In the western

and central area, mainly Tirana - Durres,

is characterized by a high concentration of

population often facing the lack of adequate

infrastructure of primary services. Informality,

urban sprawl, building stock and second

apartments to the detriment of the traditional

urban and natural landscape, which again

has not resolved the issue of housing for a

broad category of the population, absence of

minimal hygienic-sanitary conditions, mass

construction in coastal areas with objects not

used during almost ¾ of the year, while in the

summer season are not attractive enough for

a qualitative tourism, constitute the dominant

features characterizing the territorial

developments of the last 25 years.

In order to reduce the inequality created, the

General National Plan for the urban system

proposes:

- A polycentric territorial development and a

new urban-rural relationship;

- An inspection of the physical expansion of

cities and urbanized areas, thus promoting

densification instead of urban sprawl;

- A better access to multimodal infrastructure,

which is not only more effective but also

environmental friendly;

- Mixed and complementary functions;

- A smart use and management of the urban

ecosystem, in particular of water, energy and

wastes;

- A conservation and development of natural

assets and assets of historical cultural

heritage in the sense of improving and

actuating these assets in the urban life.

The plan introduces a hierarchy of the centres

and their profiling in the accommodation of

appropriate economic sectors by making use

of the existing potentials.

The plan introduces:

a. 7 primary economic poles identified as

regional development poles:

b. 12 primary urban centres;

c. 9 secondary urban centres;

d. 39 tertiary urban centres;

e. 61 specialized local centres.

This hierarchy orients the investments of

central and local government and projects

in line with the new demands of urban

development to cover citizens with 100% of

primary services, thus guaranteeing the urban

quality of life.

The policy guiding the proposed urban

system structure is the creation and

strengthening of dynamic, attractive and

competitive cities in urbanized regions.

The dynamism of cities goes towards an

intensification of the relations between

cities that share a similar economic growth,

but also with the surrounding areas and

beyond; responds on real-time to the trends

of economic development, innovation and

demographic changes.

The attractive cities are expected to be

mainly developed in two directions:

- Firstly, by investing in the improvement

of urban quality of life, through

the primary services of education,

healthcare, recreation, culture, art, public

infrastructure, quality of environment,

air, security, etc. All these represent key

components in attracting the adequate

population to live and work in these cities

and towns, a population, which becomes

the critical mass that is a prerequisite for

the development of a sustainable market,

preparing the ground for the development of

different economic sectors.

- Secondly, by investing in their existing

urban and natural assets, reassessing the

unique features constituting their territory

and as a result becoming attractive not

63


only to the tourism sector, but also to other

economic sectors.

Competitiveness promotes the development

of cities and characteristic economic

sectors therein.

Primary centres will intensify the

infrastructure of primary services in

healthcare and education, suitable to meet

the demands of urban centres within the

scope of their service of 45 minutes trip.

Investments in infrastructure in order

to increase access of the population of

surrounding areas to the primary centre.

Specialized centres or otherwise referred to

as cities of excellence will be developed in

line with their potentials, in order to become

attractive cities to live and work in.

3.1.2 The criteria for the urban system

organization

The General National Plan is based on

statistical data of INSTAT and data processed

from Census 2011. It should be noted that the

"new urban/rural classification" and the "new

typology of communes and municipalities" 24

describe the existing situation of the Albanian

urbanization and provide estimations based

on the already established trend of indicators

such as population, density, economic

development, employment increase, etc.

The General National Plan is based on these

findings, but also on strategic sectorial

and cross-sectorial projects and provides

its estimations (the scenarios) giving a

higher specific weight to indicators related

to important public investments in various

economic sectors. For example, although

the city of Kukes, upon the assessment of

performance indicators, such as population

growth, emigration rate, employment,

economic development, etc., appears a rural

featured area, in the GNP document, Kukes

is considered one of the gateway cities and

the centre of one of the two economic poles

of northern Albania, due to the existing public

infrastructure and the one foreseen by this

Plan, as follows:

- there is a road of national, regional, and

Balkan importance passing through this

centre;

- it is envisaged to make operational an

international airport, a factor that improves

access, stimulates employment and enhances

competitiveness;

- the border geographical position increases

the chances of expanding the market base

through cross-border commercial economic

exchanges;

- the natural mineral resources of national

importance and quick connection with two

ports of national importance, the port of

Durres and the port of Shengjin.

The same methodology has been followed

for the city of Gjirokastra as the centre of the

southern economic pole.

To reach the level of polycentrism at national

level supporting the hierarchization of urban

centres and economic poles, the GNP was

based on the following criteria:

1. Population

2. Density

3. Economic Development

4. Economic Resources

5. Infrastructure of national importance:

- Transport Corridors

- Gas Pipeline Corridors

6. Ports

7. Airports

8. Historical centres of international

importance

9. Natural resources of national and regional

importance.

It is obvious that not all the cities evaluated

as primary urban centres meet all the above

criteria, but the GNP estimates that in the next

15 years, with the implementation of strategic

project investments proposed by GNP, the

required promotion of their economic and

social development will be achieved.

Hierarchy of centres

The system of urban centres aims to be a

standardized, comprehensive and hierarchical

24

INSTAT, May 2014.

64


system of places (cities), which accomplish

complex functions for the urban and

surrounding rural areas. Urban centres are

epicentres of economic, social and cultural

life throughout the national territory. They

assume functions/tasks/services for the

communities in their respective territory in

line with their function and classification in

the urban system.

Their identification and marking is essential

as it constitutes a mutual obligation (central

and local) for the economic development,

social cohesion and the preservation of

their natural ecosystems. Categorization

on the other hand, constitutes the essence

of sustainable development, focusing on

and differentiating the quantity and type of

sectorial projects as per their characteristics

and features.

- Methodology

The methodology of the hierarchization of

urban centres is based on the Central Place

Theory 25 .

In this theory, the central place has the

primary function to provide goods and

services to the surrounding population. The

degree of influence of the central place is a

function of the service area and the size of

this service area will determine the nature of

territorial organization. Figure 3.6 illustrates

in a simplified manner the system of central

places according to the market principle

with three centre rankings. In such case

the service area of a highest ranked centre

includes the equivalent of three market areas

of following lower ranked centres.

The territorial organization of cities tends to

follow the structure of the central places in

order to ensure a hierarchy of services for the

entire urban population. This is particularly

the case of large metropolitan areas

comprising a variety of nodes (poly-centres),

where a large number of commercial

activities and services are concentrated. It

is assumed that the hierarchy observed at

regional level will correspond to the hierarchy

within a metropolitan area.

The diagram shown in figure 3.7 is

hypothetical and represents the pattern of a

concentric multi - nodal city with a ring road.

For the purposes of this plan, urban centres

and their hierarchical organization are based

on the basic concepts of the methodology

of the central place, but they are enriched

with reflections derived from more dynamic

additional functions, which relate to:

- The existing and proposed infrastructure of

national relevance;

- The concentration and placement feature in

relation to the typical natural resources;

- Balancing the pressures and demands for

urban development mainly in the western

part;

- Mitigation of poverty and depopulation

trends mainly in eastern peripheral regions;

- The need for a balanced territorial,

economic and social development nationwide;

B

B

B

B

B

A

A

A

B

Organization

Commercial area

B

B

B

B

B

Figure 3.6 Central Place Theory

25

Central Place Theory is a contribution of the German geographer Walter Christaller, who conducted researches on the

Southern Germany urban system during 1930s. Christaller, mainly sought to find the interdependence in the relation between

size, number and geographical location of cities. Despite that his work was mainly empirical; the theoretical part had a

deep impact in the urban geography. His investigations enabled the processing of the territorial structure location rule,

fundamental in the urban, economic, transport and urban geography studies.

65


2

4

3

4

3

4

4

3

4

1

3

2

Main axis

Secondary axis

4

2

3

4

4

3

4

1

2

3

4

Commercial central area

Regional centre

Centre of the constituent administrative unit

Local centre

Figure 3.7 Central places in the urban areas

- Issues of local governance, functions

and institutional management elements of

the territory, all municipal centres which

according to the territorial division reform of

2014 were referred to as urban centres.

The system of urban centres throughout the

Albanian territory is characterized by the

following hierarchy:

I. Metropolis,

II. Primary Urban Centres,

III. Secondary Urban Centres,

IV. Tertiary Urban Centres,

V. Local Centres,

VI. Localities.

Urban centres of respective higher levels of

hierarchy, also fulfil the functions of lower

ranked urban centres, thus, the Metropolis

simultaneously fulfils the functions of a

primary urban centre. The Metropolis and

primary urban centres have also the functions

of secondary and tertiary centres.

The metropolis, primary and secondary urban

centres, including interactive areas in the

allocation of functions are eventually defined

as central regions in the national territory.

By defining the system of urban centres

a sustainable network of technical and

social infrastructure of high and specialized

demands is reached and developed.

I. Metropolis, the capital

The first classification is reserved to the

capital, Tirana, with its special status as

the centre of the metropolitan area Tirana

- Durres. The Metropolis is considered to

be the capital of Tirana and its surrounding

functional areas.

The definition of metropolitan area

(INSTAT 2014)

Metropolitan areas are large urban areas

consisting of several agglomerations

interrelated to each other. They can be

defined by size (usually with more than one

million inhabitants), economic specialization,

and national and international importance.

Currently, there is no official definition of

metropolises in Albania, but the Tirana

- Durres corridor is often labelled as

metropolis. The largest region of Albania's

capital is obviously the only urban area

that shows strong dynamics in terms of the

international concept of metropolis.

Sixteen local units around the agglomeration

of Tirana, 9 of the Durres agglomeration, and

2 of the Kavaja agglomeration form what is

called the Tirana - Durres metropolitan area

(TDMA).

66


According to the suggested definition,

proximity to three existing urban

agglomerations is one criterion, while another

criterion is commuting for work purposes.

Movements from Kavaja are oriented towards

Golem, Durres and Tirana; Durres and Tirana

are the first destinations of each other, Kavaja

is the fourth destination of Durres.

The Tirana – Durres metropolitan area counts

for 932,110 inhabitants in the 2011 Census,

while other urban areas count for 796,449

inhabitants and 1,071,579 rural inhabitants.

In the metropolis the functions of the

primary urban centres must be guaranteed

and further developed, beyond infrastructure

and concentration of metropolitan functions,

such as:

- decision-making and monitoring functions,

- innovation centres development functions,

- development of competitive economies,

- development of infrastructure to ensure that

all other urban centres access functions of

national symbolic character.

Tirana metropolis is of central importance

not only to the national territory, but also

on a regional scale for the Western Balkans

and South-eastern Europe. It should be

strengthened as an economic, scientific,

cultural, educational, sports, commercial and

political centre.

II. Primary urban centre

Primary centres are considered to be the

regional centres. Saranda municipality

makes an exception, due to the number of

population, the special function that it is

expected to take after the increase of the

capacity of the tourist port and proximity to

the proposed airport between Gjirokastra and

Saranda.

Primary urban centres are Shkodra, Lezha,

Kukes, Peshkopi, Durres, Elbasan, Fier, Berat,

Korça, Vlora, Gjirokastra, and Saranda.

Urban centres should involve the important

functions of general and specialized primary

care service, which are important throughout

the national territory.

These are mainly:

- Economic and residential functions,

- Functions of important traffic nodes,

- Functions of the wholesale and retail trade,

- Cultural and recreational functions,

- Administrative functions,

- Educational, scientific, healthcare and social

care functions.

In primary urban centres, existing bids for

the above functions must be provided in

accordance with the potential demand and in

specific cases the necessary qualification for

their realization should be provided.

Special attention should also be paid to

handling the gateway-cities of the country:

1. Shkodra - Lezha

2. Kukes

3. Tirana

4. Durres

5. Vlora

6. Gjirokastra - Saranda

7. Korça

Features of primary urban centres

• Gateway - cities of national importance.

Entry and exit gateways of the country to the

region.

• Connecting infrastructure of national and

regional importance for the country. These

centres are traversed by at least one corridor

connecting the country to the regional

network and in some cases they have a port

or airport of national importance.

• Include areas of international importance

for cultural values of the archaeological

historical heritage, UNESCO, etc.

• Number of population, over 20,000

inhabitants and the density for the centres of

the municipalities, over 10,000 inhabitants/

km 2 .

• Administrative and political functions.

III. Secondary urban centres

Secondary urban centres are urban centres,

which though not at the hierarchical level of

the primary centres, are very important, as

they are identified by specialized functions

that are significant to their region.

67


Secondary urban centres for the relevant

intermediary sector should focus on higher

functions of primary care of a regional

importance. These include in particular:

- Economic and residential functions,

- Retail trade functions,

- Cultural and recreational functions,

- Administrative functions,

- Educational functions, the basic service, but

also specialized functions of high level, for

e.g. research institutions in specific economic

fields, characteristic of the urban centre,

- Healthcare and social care functions,

- Functions of important nodes of inter-local

transport.

Features of secondary urban centres

• Secondary cities in the plan are referred to

also as talented cities, as specialized features

of economic development characterize them.

• They are characterized by a unique

orientation of their economy such as

agriculture, mining, logistics, nature, food

industry, etc.

• They are at time intervals of up to 30

minutes away from the nearest primary

centre.

• In collaboration with the primary urban

centre they constitute the basis for the

economic development of the primary

functional areas.

• They have administrative and political

functions.

V. Local centres

Local centres are considered the residential

areas with rural and suburban character,

matching the previous municipal centres.

In general, this level of hierarchical

organization is defined in plans of lower

hierarchies as the Cross-sectorial Integrated

Coastal Plan and the Cross-sectorial Plan of

the Economic Area Tirana - Durres.

However, at the national level, GNP has

identified local centres, which though often of

non-urban nature, are characterized by special

features of the economic development, natural

resources, mining, special landscape, cultural,

historical values, etc.

VI. Localities

Localities are considered small residential

centres of rural character. In general, this

level of hierarchical organization as well is

defined in the plans of lower hierarchies as

the Cross-sectorial Coastal Plan and the

Cross-sectorial Plan of the Economic Area

Tirana - Durres. In general, localities are

villages, which are the smallest unit of the

territorial organization.

IV. Tertiary urban centres

Tertiary urban centres are the centres

of municipalities according to the new

administrative territorial reform. Their

definition is important in terms of coverage

with functions of third level educational and

healthcare services as for e.g. polyclinics.

- Economic and residential functions,

- Retail trade functions,

- Cultural and recreational functions,

- Administrative functions,

- Functions of educational secondary schools,

vocational schools,

- Healthcare and social care functions.

68


GNP classification

Functions

Metropolis

Tira na

Gateway city

Primary centre

Shkodra

Lezha

Kukes

Peshkopi

Durres

Elbasa n

Fier

Be rat

Korça

Vlora

Gjirokastra

Saranda

Gateway city

Gateway city

Gateway city

-

Gateway city

National Hub

Gateway city

National Hub

Gateway city

Gateway city

Gateway city

Gateway city

Secondary centre

Tropoja

Bulqiza

Kruja

Kavaja

Librazhd

Pogradec

Lushnje

Kuçova

Permet

Tertiary centre

Tepelena

Maliq

Divjaka

Gramsh

Peqin

Belsh

Mat

Poliçan

Roskovec

Konispol

Mirdita

Himar a

Fushe - Arre z

Libohova

Kolonja

Puka

Delvina

Skrapar

Has

Pustec

Kelcyre

Cerrik

Kurbin

Rrogozhina

Finiq

Memaliaj

Patos

Prrenjas

Shijak

Malesi e Madhe

Vau i Dejes

Vore

Ure Vajgurore

Selenica

Klos

Mallakaster

Devoll

Kamez

Dropull

Local

specialized

centre

Xarre

Lukova

Antigone

Zagori

Petran

Leskovik

Kurvelesh

Orikum

Frasher

Sevaster

Selenica

Bogova

Cakran

Qender

Dermenas

Topoje

Kuman

Kodovjat

Udenisht

Gjinar

Tregan

Klos

Kryevidh

Gjocaj

Golem

Peze

Baldushk

Krrabe

Berzhite

Petrele

Dajt

Shengjergj

Martanesh

Zerqan

Kolsh

Stebleve

Sukth

Ishem

Fushe-Kuqe

Laç

Ulez

Burrel

Melan

Kala e Dodes

Lura

Rubik

Fushe - Bulqiza

Shengjin

Velipoja

Gjegjan

Qafe Mal

Katund i Ri

Bujan

Shishtavec

Synej

Vermosh

Koplik

Ballsh

Voskopoja

Fierze

Localities

To be detailed in plans of lower hierarchy

Table 3.1 Urban centres hierarchy, GNP 2030

69


The categorization of urban centres by

functions

A function is defined as a specific activity or

service provided in a particular urban centre,

which serves residents of the centre and the

residential areas surrounding the centre.

There is a wide range of functions, which can

generally be categorized as employment in the

service, manufacturing or processing industry,

though in certain centres, employment in

specific sectors may prevail, such as:

• mining;

• trade;

• education;

• healthcare services;

• social and cultural services;

• tourism and recreation;

• transport, port;

• agricultural services;

• public administrative services.

Every urban centre fulfils a number of

functions, but the number and extent of these

services varies almost uniquely from one

urban centre to another. In general, larger

centres have a higher number of functions as

well as a larger number of sources for each

function.

However, there are exceptions. In Albania,

some smaller urban centres serve a very wide

rural area and therefore can have a number

of sources for different functions, many times

higher than the number of their resident

populations.

Where the role of small urban centres is

reinforced by the presence of functions

established through administrative policies,

smaller centres in such case can gain an

importance many times higher than the mass

of the population, i.e: Rrogozhina, Divjaka,

Peshkopia, Librazhd, Burrel and Rreshen.

The opposite occurs when small urban centres

are developed as settlements depending

on commuting for employment purposes of

larger urban centres. These types of centres

do not tend to develop the range of functions

suggested by the number/size of their

population, since many of these functions/

services are located and operate in the largest

urban centre/settlement, and furthermore

these urban centres do not serve the farthest

rural areas. Such centres are developed

around the major cities as in the case of the

former communes around Tirana with the

capital itself.

In the General National Plan any municipality

according to the new administrative territorial

reform is considered a tertiary urban centre.

In order for the implementation process, but

also for the updating and revaluating of GNP

in the next few years to go toward as accurate

definitions as possible and clearly defined

criteria for urban centres, it is necessary to

set up a database of these primary functions,

which must be met by every urban centre in

line with the population number. For this, it

is necessary that during the drafting of local

plans, the functional index of these centres

should be measured as a primary indicator,

which assists in the hierarchical organization

of the urban centres with the aim of future

development orientation in them, through

investments at the central and local level.

The functional index for urban centres of up

to 5,000 inhabitants will result from the set of

data classified in 7 categories:

1. financial services;

2. trade services;

3. business services;

4. social and administrative services;

5. educational services (level II and III);

6. tourist and recreational services;

7. agricultural services.

The ranking by functional index is calculated

depending on the population and takes value in

the territorial organization, as the "shortages"

or "surpluses" of services in urban centres are

evidenced through it.

70


In general:

- Urban centres with the highest functional

index compared to their population are

considered urban centres of high market

power, generally a characteristic of cities in

important national junctions.

- Urban centres with the lowest functional

index compared to their population are

considered urban centres with high commuting

activities for employment purposes.

- Urban centres with a functional index

comparable to their population are considered

consolidated centres and are generally large

cities.

Map 3.1 Conceptual display of the proposed

territorial interventions. Urban development

and its consolidation should take into account

the risks at different levels.

Map 3.2 Shows the risks presented on the

new and existing settlements by floods,

earthquakes, landslides, pollution, etc., at

national level. For any new development

analysis and evaluation of risk factors to

the human life must be further detailed by

referring to this material.

In order to have an overview of such

assessment of urban centres, it is necessary to

measure such indicators.

Thus, it is important that when drafting

the General Local Plans, local planning

authorities should measure the functional

index of their territory. This would enable

efficiency of decision-making for on-going

local investments, monitoring of plan

implementation, and measuring its success

or shortcomings.

3.1.3 Strategic territorial proposals for

urban centres

The General National Plan, depending on the

current and proposed status of urban centres

and in order to ensure the development of

the territory in accordance with GNP Vision

Shqipëria 2030”, proposes consolidating,

reinforcing, regenerating, cooperative and

empowering interventions for the urban

centres.

Consolidation and regeneration - Metropolis,

primary urban centres;

Reinforcement and regeneration - Central

tertiary urban centres;

Empowerment and regeneration – Gateway

cities and eastern urban centres;

Cooperation – at national level;

71


19°0'0"E

19°10'0"E

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21°10'0"E

42°50'0"N

KOLASHIN

BERANE

POZAJE

42°50'0"N

ANDRIJEVICA

42°40'0"N

PEJE

PRISHTINE

42°40'0"N

PLAV

VERMOSH

PODGORICE

42°30'0"N

VALBONE

42°30'0"N

THETH

GJAKOVE

42°20'0"N

42°10'0"N

B A J Z E

MALESI

E MADHE

K O P L I K

SHKODER

BUJAN

TROPOJE

FIERZE

FUSHE-ARREZ

HAS

PRIZREN

42°20'0"N

42°10'0"N

42°0'0"N

VAU I

DEJES

PUKE

QAF - MAL

KUKES

SHISHTAVEC

TETOVE

42°0'0"N

ULQIN

GJEGJAN

VELIPOJE

41°50'0"N

SHENGJIN

LEZHE

KOLSH

RUBIK

MIRDITE

LURE

KALAJA E DODES

GOSTIVAR

41°50'0"N

KURBIN

DIBER

MELAN

41°40'0"N

LAÇ

FUSHE KUQE

ULEZ

MAT

BURREL

P E S H K O P I

41°40'0"N

40°40'0"N

40°50'0"N

41°0'0"N

41°10'0"N

41°20'0"N

41°30'0"N

DURRES

TOPOJE

DERMENAS

FIER

ISHEM

KLOS

KRUJE

SUKTH

VORE

KATUND I RI

KAMEZ

SHENGJERGJ

SHIJAK

NDROQ

GOLEM

TIRANE PETRELE

KAVAJE PEZE

BERZHITE

KRRABE

SYNEJ

BALDUSHK

RROGOZHINE

KRYEVIDH

GJOCAJ

PEQIN

BELSH

TREGAN

DIVJAKE

KLOS

LUSHNJE

QENDER

URA

VAJGURORE

KUMAN

RROSKOVEC

PATOS

KUCOVE

ELBASAN

GJINAR

CERRIK

BERAT

ZERQAN

BULQIZE

MARTANESH

LIBRAZHD

GRAMSH

KODOVJAT

STEBLEVE

DIBER

PRRENJAS

STRUGE

UDENISHT

POGRADEC

MALIQ

VOSKOPOJE

OHRID

PUSTEC

40°50'0"N

41°0'0"N

41°10'0"N

41°20'0"N

41°30'0"N

LEGEND

Metropolis

Primary centre

Secondary centre

Tertiary centre

40°30'0"N

P E T R O L I F E R A

CAKRAN

SELENICE

MALLAKASTER

BALLSH

POLICAN

BOGOVE

KORCE

DEVOLL

40°30'0"N

40°40'0"N

Specialized local centre

Airport

Proposed airport

Main port

VLORE

SEVASTER

KASTORIA

Energy port

FRASHER

Marina

40°20'0"N

MEMALIAJ

KELCYRE

KOLONJE

40°20'0"N

Gateway city

40°0'0"N

40°10'0"N

KURVELESH TEPELENE PERMET

PETRAN

ZAGORIE

ANTIGONE

HIMARE

LUKOVE

LIBOHOVE

GJIROKASTER

DELVINE

LESKOVIK

KONICA

40°0'0"N

40°10'0"N

Interaction empowerment between gateway cities

National and logistic multimodal city-hub

Interaction between hubs/gateway cities

Logistic hub

Energy hub

Agricultural hub

Interaction between hubs

Reinforcement

39°50'0"N

SARANDE DROPULL

FINIQ

39°50'0"N

Empowerment

Consolidation

KSAMIL

XARRE

KONISPOL

IOANNINA

Regeneration and cooperation (specialized toward

ecotourism, adventure tourism, agricultural tourism,

hydrocarbons and energy sector)

39°40'0"N

0 5 10 20 30 40

Km

FILIATES

39°40'0"N

Regeneration and cooperation (specialized toward

core sectors of mountain tourism, mining-energy and

hydro sector, and agricultural sector)

Cooperation

Map 3.1 Interactions between gateway cities and hubs, GNP 2030

72


19°0'0"E

19°10'0"E

19°10'0"E

19°20'0"E

19°20'0"E

19°30'0"E

19°30'0"E

19°40'0"E

19°40'0"E

19°50'0"E

19°50'0"E

20°0'0"E

20°0'0"E

20°10'0"E

20°10'0"E

20°20'0"E

20°20'0"E

20°30'0"E

20°30'0"E

20°40'0"E

20°40'0"E

20°50'0"E

20°50'0"E

21°0'0"E

21°0'0"E

21°10'0"E

21°10'0"E

42°50'0"N

KOLASHIN

BERANE

POZAJE

42°50'0"N

ANDRIJEVICA

42°40'0"N

PEJE

PRISHTINE

42°40'0"N

PLAV

PODGORICE

GJAKOVE

42°20'0"N

42°20'0"N

42°30'0"N

42°30'0"N

Liqeni

i

SHKODRËS

PRIZREN

42°0'0"N

42°10'0"N

42°10'0"N

TETOVE

42°0'0"N

ULQIN

41°50'0"N

Lumi Buna

41°50'0"N

GOSTIVAR

Lumi Drini i Vjetër

41°40'0"N

Lumi Mat

41°40'0"N

Lumi Ishëm

DIBER

41°20'0"N

41°20'0"N

41°30'0"N

41°30'0"N

Lumi Erzen

STRUGE

41°10'0"N

OHRID

41°10'0"N

41°0'0"N

Lumi Shkumbin

Liqeni i OHRIT

41°0'0"N

Liqeni

i

PRESPËS

LEGEND

40°50'0"N

Lumi Seman

40°50'0"N

Flood water

1/100 years flooding

Flooding at 1.5 m

Annual flooding

40°40'0"N

Lumi Vjosë

40°40'0"N

MSK 6

MSK 7

MSK 8

40°30'0"N

40°30'0"N

Active landslide

KASTORIA

Areas of landslides

Saltwater penetration

40°20'0"N

40°20'0"N

Coastal erosion

Avalanche risk

Landslide area

40°10'0"N

Water spring

40°10'0"N

Karst spring

Karst areas

Canyons

40°0'0"N

KONICA

40°0'0"N

Karst cave

Wetland area

Industrial points

39°50'0"N

39°50'0"N

Gravel use from river

Exploitation of inerts from the rivers

IOANNINA

Landfills

39°40'0"N

0 5 10 20 30 40

Km

FILIATES

39°40'0"N

Hotspots

Water flow from excavations

Risk from radon

Map 3.2 Urban system risks

73


a) Consolidation and regeneration of

the metropolis of Tirana and primary

urban centres

For the General National Plan it is

important that the economic performance,

competitiveness and national relevance

of the Tirana metropolis and the Tirana

- Durres economic pole continues in

the future. Population and economic

benefits in this area will continue to

grow in the next 15 years. However, the

negative phenomenon of the city’s urban

sprawl in the territory of the surrounding

local units, consuming the free natural

territory, should not proceed. Physical

consolidation of the metropolis of Tirana,

supported by efficient planning of land use

in urban areas, is an essential criterion

to be applied in view of intelligent and

competitive growth of the metropolis.

Consolidation is also required for the

public transport within the metropolis,

including the regional development pole

Tirana-Durres.

In this way, it is aimed that investments

in transport infrastructure in this

area increase the efficiency and

competitiveness of this pole.

To achieve this, the following steps should

be considered to be implemented at

Regional and Local Plans of the area by

the relevant authorities.

- Metropolis

Undertaking a detailed analysis of all

the abandoned, vacant, degraded or

non-agricultural land, will provide

an assessment of the potential

holding capacity of the area to future

accommodation of the required usages,

not only for housing but also spaces for

the development of various economic

sectors. This assessment should start

from the areas closer to public transport

corridors.

Local authorities responsible for the

planning and development of the territory

must use the legal instruments in force

such as the “transfer of the right to

development”, “conditional intensity”,

“the right of preference”, which facilitate

the consolidation of fragmented land and

reallocation in more suitable areas of

functions currently placed in inappropriate

areas. One such case can be for the areas

used for industrial purposes within the

city or the polluting economic activities,

which should be reallocated away from

residential areas or natural resources

such as water resources, etc.

Ensuring the appropriate use of the

existing housing stock, by drafting

sustainable reuse schemes (such as

adaptation to functions different from

residential ones) or the use of fiscal

instruments that promote their use.

The promotion of mixed uses within the

urban area territory is suggested in the

local territorial planning without prejudice

to the development norms and indicators.

The new proposals for multifunctional

shopping centres, which have a mixed

public character, shall be evaluated to be

built within the urban areas, where there

is transport infrastructure. Therefore,

the territorial dispersal brought about

by the allocation of these urban centres

outside the urban line is limited, while the

public and social life of the urban centre is

improved.

Promoting the drafting of detailed plans

for the regeneration of urban areas with

historical potential, but not only, as well

as of public spaces, accompanied by a

detailed framework of a construction code

which should be easily understandable

and implementable by developers and the

community.

74


Densification can be achieved without

compromising the quality and comfort of

urban life. Conserving all natural parks

and existing green areas by promoting

the increase of their number and green

surface. Evaluating the potential for

redevelopment of former industrial and

storage areas for new economic, social,

cultural and recreational activities.

b) Strengthening the north-western

and south-western urban centres

In order to replicate the economic

performance of the regional development

pole Tirana-Durres, Albania needs to

strengthen the dynamism of existing

gateway cities of the western part of

the country: Shkodra - Lezha, Vlora,

and Saranda as well as develop new

connecting gateways in the east and

southwest: Kukes, Korça, Gjirokastra. As

such, the attraction of new investments

in these pole, which will balance and

complement the regional development

pole Tirana-Durres, will be enabled.

All the above-mentioned areas will need

to grow significantly, even beyond the

positive scenario forecasts of high growth

in the population projections of the Census

2011. Some of these cities have strong

tendencies to achieve these conditions.

For example:

- Vlora and Fier cities, the growth data

indicate a good start towards this

scenario. The challenge is to strengthen

their capacity as a friendly economic pole

towards business development, based

on efficient public transport and one that

preserves the physical characteristics of

the natural landscape.

- Gjirokastra – Saranda gateway, needs

to be strengthened in order to develop

and later on become competitive in the

region and complementary to the regional

development pole Tirana-Durres. This is

carried out by GNP with the proposal to

build a new international airport in the

south of the country and increase the

capacity of the port of Saranda as a tourist

port. This new connecting infrastructure

will increase accessibility in one of the

most attractive areas of coastal tourism in

the country such as the southern Riviera,

and in areas of international importance

for the historical and cultural heritage

recognized by UNESCO, such as Butrinti

Park and the city of Gjirokastra.

- Shkodra – Lezha gateway, is another

pole, which needs to be strengthened.

GNP foresees the empowerment of

Shengjini port to double its port capacity,

improvement of physical connections

to Lezha, Shkodra and Velipoja with an

efficient public transport, which is fast

and environmental friendly. The favourable

position of this pole, same as the one in

Vlora - Fier, is reinforced by the railway

infrastructure, which should be revitalized

under the improvement potential of the

rapid and safe connectivity with Podgorica

and the European countries within the

same central network.

However, currently only the Vlora -

Fier functional area is closer to the

possibility of achieving the necessary

critical mass of population and degree

of development of the Tirana-Durres

regional development pole. The later has

a reinforced critical mass, supported

by the development of infrastructure

connections with the surrounding areas

and by the complementary attractions they

offer. Such a strategic approach should

be drawn also for other gateway cities as

centres of regional development poles of

national relevance.

75


These gateway cities are located in the

territory at 100 -150 km distance away

from the Tirana - Durres gateway. Only

Korça and Gjirokastra are located at a

greater distance, but with the construction

of Corridor VIII and the Central Axis, the

time distance is shortened. However, the

population of their surrounding regions

does not exceed 300,000 inhabitants,

with the exception of the Vlora - Fier

area with 700,000 inhabitants. This

means that to achieve the development

scenario as economic regions or

functional areas of national relevance,

their population is projected to double in

size. This expectation is not in line with

the provisions of Census 2011 regarding

the population of the country, which for

the first time in its history is facing a deep

regression.

However, GNP “Shqipëria 2030

estimates that investing in strategic

national infrastructure in these cities,

new airports, ports of doubled capacity,

fast connections roads, improving the

quality of urban life with investments

in primary healthcare and education

services, utilizing the Albanian energy

potential in the region and developing

the transport sector towards a modern

technology, will generate positive

expectations to live and invest in our

country. Increased investments from

migration will be accompanied by the

growth of population due to returned

migrants and decrease in departures

from the country. The increase in

positive expectations to live within the

country will also be accompanied by

increased fertility.

Time distance is actually more important

than physical distance. Even more

important is the multi-modal transport

between them. So, from one gateway

to another, regardless of distance, it is

76

important to travel within a period of less

than 1.5 hours and have different transport

possibilities by car, bus and train. Based

on this feature another function of these

cities emerges, such as the establishment

of multimodal terminals within them. This

element constitutes an attractive feature

for any type of enterprise and commercial

activity. This scenario can be realized

through the reinforcement of the road and

rail infrastructure as well as multimodal

terminals. However, improving physical

connections is not sufficient. The four

western gates will need to develop in a

complementary way. This complementarity

should be generated by the productive

economic functions of these cities.

In the economic sectors, specialization

according to natural resources is essential.

Enhancing relations between cross-border

regions is a key element for expanding the

market base and range of supply.

Regional Development Poles

of National Importance

Durres - Tirana Pole

Fier - Vlora Pole

Shkodra - Lezha Pole

Elbasan Pole

Korça - Pogradec Pole

Gjirokastra - Saranda Pole

Kukes - Tropoja Pole

Census 2001

(unit: inhabitants) (unit: inhabitants)

843 081

712 176

344 213

362 736

263 410

120 784

111393

Table 3.2 Population as per Census 2001 and 2011 for

the regional development poles. Elaborated by: NTPA

The best way to achieve the critical

mass of these complementary gates is

the polycentric development of cities

with complementary functions between

them, and strengthening cooperation

and interrelations between them. Similar

patterns of polycentric development have

Census 2011

1 012 150

571 752

308 797

295 827

220 782

99 209

85 292


long been implemented in many developed

European countries.

Balancing the contribution of the Tirana-

Durres regional development pole will

depend on:

• the expansion of the critical mass of

every city,

• the combination of the attractions of the

cities by reinforcing and improving physical

connections between them.

The following are considered key factors in

identifying new gateway cities:

- location,

- the existence and capacity of primary

service infrastructure for a considerable

development,

- a respective business concentration and

innovative development potential,

- strategic existing or potential transport

connection,

- establishment or the presence of an

airport or an international port.

Kukes, Korça and Gjirokastra are proposed

as gateway cities to strengthen the critical

mass in the northeast and south of the

country. To achieve this goal, the Integrated

Transport and Land Use Plan for these

cities should be drafted by 2030.

c) Strengthening and regeneration of

urban centres in the central part of the

territory

The difference between the existing critical

mass of cities in the central and western

area and the demand for reinforcement

of the critical mass in the eastern border

cities, presents a territorial challenge, but

also an opportunity for the development of

the central and south-eastern cities of the

country.

The historical attraction of population

towards central cities and major cities

of the Western Lowland has influenced

the reduction of the critical mass of

population (active force for a stable market,

purchasing power and the active force

to generate income), thus affecting the

decrease in the attractiveness factor for

investments in these centres. While the

primary urban centres will continue to

grow in population, the critical mass of

central and southeast tertiary centres and

the attractiveness factor for investments

in these centres need to be strengthened.

Some of these centres have a potential to

attract investments in the mining sector,

but also in the mountain tourism sector.

The strategic approach of GNP is to

improve access of local centres to

the municipal centre and to improve

connectivity of the municipal centre

to the country's main gateway cities.

Therefore, the development of connecting

infrastructure of these centres should

focus on improving the permeability of

their territory and strengthening ties

with the closest ports and airports of

the country, but also with multimodal

hub cities of national relevance. On the

other hand, regenerative interventions

are essential to urban centres, which

have a special character and relate to the

history of city foundation, and revitalization

of industries toward new economic

applications in the field of manufacture,

food industry or new branches of green

industry (production of typical products and

the registration of brands such as honey,

rakia, wine, etc.).

Revitalization consists also in consolidating

historical and cultural assets serving to

tourism economy and in regenerating

architectural values such as the Venetian

towers. These centres are: Vau i Dejes,

Puka, Mirdita, Mat, Klos.

Even more essential for these centres is

the promotion of cooperation between

these centres and the closest primary

urban centres such as Shkodra, Kukes

and Lezha.

- The construction of the railway line

connecting the centre of Rubik with the

77


primary railway line, which is of strategic

importance for the export of industrial

production in this centre, towards the port

of Durres.

d) Regeneration and cooperation of

western centres

During the desk-top review supporting

GNP, such as INSTAT data processing

reports from Census 2011 or Annexes

of functional areas analysis of the

MSLA, it is highlighted the intensive

development that many cities in the

western and central lowlands such

as Golem, Kamza, Kavaja, Orikum,

Velipoja, etc., have undergone in the

wave of urbanization of the last decade.

Especially cities along the coast, Golem,

Orikumi, Shengjini have experienced an

urbanism and revitalization boom due

to the diversification of the agricultural

economic base to a touristic one. These

cities contain a high potential to attract

people and creative ventures in the field

of hotels - tourism, development of

marinas and tourist ports, also due to the

proximity to primary urban cities, which

often serve as a destination for "weekend

escapes”.

The development of a new tourism

economy in close relation to agricultural

economy is required in order to

ensure their further and sustainable

development. These cities are surrounded

by deeply agricultural locations, which

can contribute to and support the tourism

development in these cities. Also, their

tourist potential arises if it manages

to diversify the supply to other types

of tourism such as ecotourism, agrotourism,

fishing, marine, aquaculture,

forestry, etc., and even renewable energy.

Appropriate investments in these

cities will serve to transform them into

connecting nodes of gateway cities with

tertiary centres inland as well as to

develop local centres and surrounding

locations. It is essential to develop a

combination of the activities of primary

centres cities in relation to the activities

in these centres, to dampen the negative

phenomenon of "dorm" or "dead" cities

during most months of the year, except

summer. Investments should focus on

creating links between educational,

industrial, transportation or natural

sciences centres.

Proximity to gateway cities, research and

innovation centres, the tourist potential

based on wild natural landscape or sports

such as fishing and driving can support

this role.

In order to strengthen their role as

linking nodes, investments in local road

infrastructure to improve access to the

surrounding locations and to strengthen

their relationship with primary cities

will be needed; as well as developing

an efficient public transport, improving

electricity infrastructure, sanitation,

water supply and telecommunications.

The development of primary urban

centres in the western part is supported

by the regeneration and strengthening of

a number of small cities in their affinities.

In these cities the tourism sector is

developed, that serves as a catalyst for

the creation of new jobs in the tourism,

services and innovative ventures sectors.

To protect and further increase the vitality

of these cities in the future, to their own

benefit, but also to the benefit of the

surrounding locations, it is necessary

to balance the needs for further

development, which may contradict and

undermine the main features constituting

the core of their attractiveness.

e) Cooperation at national and crossborder

level

In general, the urban areas and centres at

78


the border of the territory are considered

as "peripheral areas". In view of an

intensive economic, qualitative and longterm

development at national level, it is

aimed for both European integration and

the strengthening of the country and of

its role as a centre of economic relevance

and a stabilizing factor in the Balkans.

Functional cooperation or collaboration

between urban centres near the borders

with the neighbouring urban centres

provide for the achievement of this vision

and increase the national relevance of

these 'peripheral' cities.

In border areas cooperation has a special

relevance in order to access and use

efficiently and with maximum impact the

Cross-border IPA funds for the Balkan

region. National road infrastructure

corridors and cross-border national

parks such as the park of the Alps and

Buna, Prespa and Ohrid lakes etc.,

are territorial connecting elements

that promote large-scale cooperation.

There have long been brought and

implemented proposals for various areas

of cooperation in these areas in order

to create economic advantages for the

urban centres within these areas, but still

in a small-scale of social and economic

impact for the inhabitants.

Needs for cooperation in these regions

differ by area, ranging from the increase

of trade exchanges of agricultural and

livestock products, of cooperation with

a view to protecting and enhancing the

natural joint assets up to maximizing the

tourism supply. This cooperation should

not be seen as isolated from primary

economic functional areas of the country,

as the cross-border cooperation areas

are linked to these areas by national

infrastructure. For example, the crossborder

park "Ohrid Lake" and the crossborder

park "Buna River" have the

opportunity to be directly connected with

the port of Shengjin, thus with Lezha as a

gateway city and to maximize the benefits

of cooperation. On the other hand, also

the cooperation between Kukes - Has -

Tropoja with Prizren - Gjakova - Pristina

through "Nations' Road" creates direct

links to the port of Shengjin, Velipoja

beaches, port of Durres, etc., expanding

the economic cooperation framework

between the key urban centres.

In this regard, the specialized local

centres of the country represent a

potential for further development, as

well as the logistic hubs near border

areas, but not only. Secondary and

tertiary urban centres with high profile

potential in agriculture, marine and oil

processing, logistics etc., are Koplik,

Bajze, Laç, Has, Fushe-Kruja, Lushnja,

Porto-Romano, Roskovec, Patos, Ballsh,

Orikum, Petrolifera, Maliq, Prrenjas,

Xarra, Himara.

In terms of cross-border, these

"suburban cities" take a central role in

the development of these regions. These

centres can guide the development of

the eastern region of the country in the

field of entrepreneurship, trade, tourism,

agriculture, energy and mining industry.

Localities and villages

Primary urban centres that have growth

opportunities due to the strong ties to

national infrastructure such as "Nations'

Road", "Arbri Road", the South-Central

Axis should apply an integrated framework

for infrastructure and land use.

By further improving the quality of life,

Tirana will continue to be an attractive

place to live and work in by increasing

investment competitiveness. In order to

continue to be a successful and healthy

city, Tirana should:

• Establish an efficient and qualitative

79


system of public transport. It should

ensure adequate access (in terms of

time, quality, and safety parameters) to

workplaces, schools, hospitals and all

institutions of education, healthcare,

social, public and recreational services.

• Improve international access by

reinforcing the national airport with a

multimodal terminal equipped with a

public transport bus station and train

station. Construct the railway line for

passenger transport from the "Mother

Teresa" airport to the city of Tirana.

• Reinforce transport linking Tirana to

other gateway cities: Durres, Shkodra –

Lezha, Vlora - Fier, Saranda - Gjirokastra.

• Strengthen and improve the

infrastructure of water supply and

sewerage.

• Concentrate the manufacturing activities

in the vicinity of public transport.

• Promote investments that develop

creative capacity and research in the field

of education through the development of

tertiary education and establish effective

links between industry and research

institutes.

• Keep the difference between the way

of the urban development of the centre

and surrounding areas with typical rural

specialized features, while maintaining the

hierarchy of centres.

• Protect the natural assets of Tirana such

as the National Park of Dajti mountain,

surrounding lakes and parks, river valleys

and urban parks.

• Invest in elements that enhance the

quality of life of the city, schools and health

centres, kindergartens, nurseries, as well

as points of attraction, as the cultural and

entertainment centres.

• Eliminate areas of social segregation

and their integrated development in urban

consolidated areas.

In a wider context:

- Strengthen the Tirana - Durres corridor

in order to increase its economic integrity.

- Vora plays a strategic role as a linking

node to Tirana-Durres and with the largest

airport in the country, Rinas, further

specializing as a logistic hub.

- Construct an integrated network of public

transport between Tirana - Durres and

Tirana to the surrounding localities.

- Pressure for housing constructions in

Tirana is accompanied by a high demand

for commuting for work purposes. This can

be eliminated or mitigated by making such

cities be more oriented towards a selfsufficient

economy or development. 26

Localities and villages in rural areas near

and around the economic poles

Rural areas near and around existing

economic poles and urban areas, mainly

in the region of Tirana - Durres, vary from

their typology between areas with strong

rural - agricultural characteristics at high

pressure for urban development and in

areas with poor agricultural qualities due

to their extensive suburbanism. These

areas do not even meet the characteristics

of an authentic urban or rural area.

Deeper into their territories extend wide

natural surface areas with landscape

features often under the pressure for

urban developments and construction

of secondary housing, thus risking the

loss of features of the ecosystem and

the unique landscape they incorporate,

as well as deprivation of these spaces

from being used by the wider public due

to the establishment of private closed

communities.

The rural areas near and around the

proposed economic poles

In areas with strong agricultural character,

new developments in the field should

26

More detailed definitions are provided in the Cross-sectorial Integrated Plan for the Economic Area Tirana - Durres.

80


espect the existing rural character of

the villages. Beyond the villages, an

importance should be given to structures

serving to the agricultural and livestock

products, as well as to establishing the

strategic infrastructure suitable for them.

These areas need booking of spaces to

provide a green mass, which will serve as

the "lungs" of the city and surrounding

urban areas.

Urban extensions for residential

development in such areas, which can be

deployed in closer urban areas, should

be minimized as much as possible.

Initiatives to develop local tourism

should be encouraged and supported

through domestic policies, by investing

in the renewal of the urban centres

of the villages, which retain the local

architectural character, in order to attract

visitors, attract local businesses, as well

as improve quality in order to generate

employment.

Further development should be oriented

toward already urbanized areas, which

have lost their primary rural-natural

character, in order to protect the remaining

spaces with these features. Legal

instruments of transfer of the right to

development, conditional intensity etc.,

should be widely used by local planning

instruments in order to create equal

opportunities for development. Local plans

will play a key role in the implementation

and elaboration of this process.

Localities, villages and rural areas in the

Western Coastal Region

Villages and rural areas of the western

region of the country are characterized by

a variety of local development features.

Despite the rapid transformations

some of them have suffered during

the urbanization of the past 25 years,

for reasons outlined in Chapter I, still

a vast number of them have retained

their natural territorial property values.

Generally these villages have features

that differentiate from their geographical

location and proximity to special natural

areas.

Villages in lowland coastal areas,

traditionally developed toward agricultural

sector, are located on the agricultural land

of the western lowlands. These include

locations and villages that have historically

developed a prioritized agricultural sector,

far from the coastline, to have a pressure

of tourist buildings and away from the

main road infrastructure to be impacted

by urban development. Generally, these

villages and rural areas suffer from

depopulation and abandonment of the

agricultural sector. Appropriate policies

must be followed for these local centres

and rural areas in order to reinforce the

recovery of infrastructure connecting

these areas with the closest primary

urban centres. These villages carry a

strategic role in the development of a

specialized agricultural economy, which is

the main source of agricultural products

nationwide. It is important to create an

adequate network that will connect these

characteristic agricultural areas and

will strengthen the system of collection,

storage and distribution to processing

or wholesale centres. Innovation in

technology use and specialization of these

agglomerations areas in the service of a

higher productivity and a higher quality

will form the basis for their sustainable

development.

Villages in lowland coastal areas, affected

by urban and tourist developments

These include locations and villages, which

due to their proximity to the coastline

and major urban cities have altered their

territorial physical character under the

pressure for constructions in tourism area

and second residences in the coastal area.

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Traditionally, the economy of these areas

has been closely linked to the agricultural

economy and it has been classified as

rural, but after processing the data of

Census 2011 by INSTAT, a large number

of them have been changed into suburban

areas.

In absence of a territorial development

control, rapid urban interventions in

these areas have not been associated

with preservation of local characteristics

of construction or appropriate degree

of densification that would respect the

characteristic fractures of the territory and

the landscape. This has resulted in the

decline of the quality of urban and natural

landscape features. The core services

infrastructure in most cases is absent or

does not satisfy the requirements of the

new economic sector of tourism. Some of

these areas deprive access to the wider

public because of the development of

closed communities with holiday flats,

while the rest have become dormant and

empty areas in most of the year, to revive

only during 1- 2 months in summer.

These areas need urban renewal, which

will aim at improving the architectural

qualities toward the traditional features of

the area. This should promote research

into traditional and characteristic

architecture of these locations and

villages. Regeneration is also required for

water and wastewater infrastructure and

above all to strengthen the collection and

processing infrastructure of urban waste

as well as the wastewater processing

plants. In some cases, redevelopment

can result necessary to newly built

areas, but degraded due to poor quality

of construction and failing to fulfil the

functions for which they were built or even

degradation of the Waterfront 27 landscape.

A priority for these areas still remains

the maintenance of the quality of coastal

waters from urban pollution, regeneration

of green natural spaces, regeneration of

areas designed to improve the physical

quality of construction, but also the

landscape by increasing greenery, the

number of green recreation spaces, which

naturally merge with green corridors, with

green massifs more inland.

In order to achieve economic success in

these areas, in the field of sustainable

tourism, a better liaison with traditional

agricultural villages more inland is needed,

in view of developing a diversified tourist

sector into agritourism and ecotourism,

as well as supporting coastal tourism

with local authentic food products. It

is also important to build appropriate

connections of their road infrastructure

with the closest primary urban centres.

The term "appropriate connecting

infrastructure" means the establishment

of the necessary minimal roads to provide

access and connection to these villages

with the surrounding urban areas, while

maintaining the maximum degree of

fragmentation of the natural existing

territory. Improving public transport as

well as pedestrian and bicycle routes in

these regions are key to the realization of

this liaison.

The areas above are intercepted by villages

that lie in areas of high environmental

sensitivity, such as the villages near

lagoons or river deltas and natural national

parks. These areas have maintained an

undeveloped character, but the new areas

are currently under pressure for urban

and tourist redevelopment. In order not to

repeat previous mistakes, special attention

is required in developing convenient access

to these areas. The degree of intervention

27

Waterfront: term used to describe the water front of urban centers along the coastline.

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in them shall be absolutely maintained in

compliance with the restrictions arising

from the sectorial legislation on protected

areas, national parks, landscapes and

protected natural landscapes, lagoons

and wetlands, as well as distances from

water resources defined by the sectorial

legislation on the management of water

resources.

Future developments in these areas will

be limited within the lines that limit the

traditional village or the traditional urban

centre. As described for the villages above,

also for these villages and locations, for

the purposes of improving the economy

of these areas in the field of sustainable

tourism, a better liaison with the traditional

agricultural villages more inland is

needed, in order to develop a diversified

tourist sector towards agritourism and

ecotourism, as well as supporting coastal

tourism with authentic local food products.

It is also important to build appropriate

connections of their road infrastructure to

closest primary urban centres. Improving

public transport as well as pedestrian and

bicycle routes in these regions comprise

the key to the realization of this liaison.

Villages in the mountainous coastal areas,

such as the southern coastal villages

which have a more differentiated nature

than the above villages. Due to the physical

conditions of the territory, a large part of

them are located in a mountainous terrain,

but by air, very close to the coastline.

"Difficulty" of access to the coast from

these villages has generally preserved

their main traditional and architectural

features. These areas also suffer from

depopulation due to migration, facing

a revival only during 1-2 months of the

tourist season in the summer, meanwhile

facing a high pressure for massive tourist

developments. These areas need urban

regeneration to improve the connecting

infrastructure, communication and

improve public transport. Territorial

policies in these areas aim at promoting

the development of elite tourism

characterized by the preservation and

strengthening of characteristic elements

of traditional architecture, and natural

landscape and coastline.

Strengthening maritime infrastructure

to ports and marine tourism is a key

infrastructure for their diversification. The

positioning of this infrastructure must

be such as to provide quick connection

with existing traditional villages and

existing urban centres. This would affect

the growth of tourism in these areas and

would avoid turning new marinas into

parking spaces for yachts and cruise

ships only. Of particular importance is the

promotion of cooperation between these

villages with the villages inland known for

local agricultural and livestock products,

which affect the quality and authenticity

of coastal tourism. The Cross-sectorial

Integrated Coastal Plan and Local Plans

for this territory will specify in detail the

way of implementation of these principles

of development.

Localities and villages in remote peripheral

and central mountainous rural areas

(north, northeast, east and southeast).

These areas carry a high potential for

diversification and specialization in

the agricultural sector as a result of

opportunities, mixed uses and activities

on their territory. The identification of

such a potential and its activation should

be the focus of local communities and

business groups in these areas, supported

by bodies such as regional boards,

regional development agencies, central

institutions adjuvant of MARDWA, boards

of the regional enterprises and various

departments of local agencies.

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3.2 Natural System

The context

In terms of sustainable development,

overbuilding, use of underground for

sanitation and foundations and fragmentation

of free space, and in particular the

exploitation of non-renewable natural

resources should be avoided to the maximum

and maintained at an as low as possible level.

The method of land use as a result of sprawl

and development, leads towards constant

free surface loss along with its functions, in

support of natural ecosystems and climate

protection, recreation, as well as their

functions of economic capacity to forestry and

agriculture, production of renewable energy

and protection of subsoil resources of the

relevant areas.

Currently, the surface of protected areas in

Albania occupies nearly 15% of the national

territory. Inside the national territory there

are 15 national parks, 22 natural reserves,

without counting the protected landscapes

and natural monuments, which are much less

visited and not at all treated as part of any

economic sector. Also, Albania is part of the

European Green Corridor.

A more detailed description of the current

situation of the Albanian natural system is

presented in the State of the Environment

Report, developed by NEA, and in the

Crosscutting Environmental Strategy,

published by the Ministry of Environment.

Managed natural

reserve 27.64%

Managed natural resources

protected area 3.97 %

Natural strict area 1.04 %

Natural monument 0.75 %

15.54%

Protected landscape 20.84 %

National park 45.76 %

Terrestial protected area 13.24%

Marine protected area 2.3%

Graphic 3.1 Protected Areas Development Strategy, NAPA

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Drawbacks of the natural system

During the past two decades, Albania has been involved in rapid urban

developments, which have been associated with a direct impact on the natural

and the environmental system. Increased consumption, transportation, solid

urban waste, wastewater discharge into rivers and seas, uncontrolled forest

cutting, erosion of river banks and erosion of the mountains are just some of the

phenomena which have occurred. In more details some of the issues the natural

system faces, consist of:

1. Habitat degradation, coastal, hilly and mountainous erosion remains a growing

phenomenon not only because of the interference in rivers and in coastal areas, but

also because of abusive forest cutting and fires.

2. Abusive forest cutting and uncontrolled grazing within the territory or close to all

PAs. However, according to the Law on protected areas, the use of forests within

the territory of PAs is not allowed. The risk from spread of wildfires is present

throughout the summer season. Generally, fires have been intentional, but they

have also derived from wrong practices followed by shepherds to improve pastures

through their combustion.

3. Hunting of birds and wildlife, overfishing, illegal fishing and use of prohibited

tools, mainly in the plains, coastal and wetlands remains a problem. Also, the

granting of licenses and number of fishermen should be limited in wetland areas,

and hunting should take place primarily with traditional methods, with embouchure

and taking into account the protective status of fishing areas and lagoons. The

development of aquaculture should be practiced at a distance not closer than 1.500

m from the territory of the protected area.

4. Infrastructural projects without environmental permits.

5. Ineffective management of recreational activities, non-management of visitors

and of the solid waste they create, not only cause damage to the landscape and

scenic values of the park or the PA, but they are also present in the areas mostly

preferred by visitors.

6. One of the hottest developments in recent years and which opposes proper

management of protected areas remains the prevention of unlawful activities,

mainly of illegal constructions. This problem has been and still remains a serious

concern. Such constructions have been identified in all the territories of protected

areas and national parks.

7. Quarries and mines represent a very negative occurrence in the destruction of

nature and landscape, habitats.

To the General National Plan, environment is not an area

preserved by human activity, but an asset preserved in

service of the humankind and sustainable economic

development.

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3.2.1 The approach of the General

National PlanShqipëria 2030

In the General National Plan, the environment

represents the natural and cultural heritage,

physical characteristics of the natural territory,

but also those of the constructed areas. Under

this context, there are two main features of the

natural system:

• It is part of the national wealth,

• Its forms and characteristics depend both on

the natural and human activity.

Since, both natural and human activities are

dynamic, the natural system is ever changing

as well. Territorial policies should recognize

this dynamic and work with these differences

in a creative way to orient changes toward a

more sustainable development of the natural

system. The physical characteristics of the

Albanian landscape have quite distinctive

features, which make our country unique in

this regard. The landscape is shaped starting

from the ridges of the eastern part, their

fragmentation ways from rivers and river

valleys, the long coastline and its interaction

with lagoons and green natural belts of

Mediterranean pines, most typical lakes of the

region, as well as by the combination of these

features with the biological diversity and the

historic urban landscape.

The major objective of GNP is: the sustainable

development of the natural system.

This objective is to be achieved through the

following policies:

- Increasing national and international

responsibility for current and future

generations, by combining the concepts of

sustainability and good governance;

- Protecting and enhancing protected natural

areas; creating a sustainable system of

environmental communication;

- Increasing the role of environment in

the economic development of the country;

mainstreaming the natural system in the

economic value of development sectors;

- Increasing the role of environment in the

quality of urban life by promoting and creating

convenient access to natural areas.

Both, the importance and responsibility of

Albania as part of the natural and cultural

network of Europe lies in the fact that its

environmental and cultural values should be

preserved, not only because of their unique

nature, but also because they relate to the

natural system, and historical and cultural

heritage of Europe.

Environment and nature, due to their widely

interoperable character, are systems, which

do not only belong to a single territory or

population; they are part of a larger network.

The concept of using a property we do not

fully possess, but that we share in time and

space, is essential to territorial development

policies. The most typical example of this

interaction is the impact on climate change,

experiencing different countries and peoples

by the improper exploitation of non-renewable

resources and environmental pollution in other

countries.

In the economic development, the environment

provides the resources base wherein are

supported many economic activities such as

agriculture, forestry, fishing, aquaculture,

mineral use, energy use, industry, services and

tourism.

The resources for these activities should be

used in such a way as to ensure as much as

possible their renewal and regeneration.

The environment on the other hand, has

also an economic role in the creation of the

country's attractions to draw the placement

of as many economic activities and people.

This has to do with the social role through

which the environment contributes to the

quality of people's lives. This role is reflected

in different dimensions: from the narrow

surrounding inhabited environment due to

wider landscapes of the coast, city, village or

locations.

Benefits in this context differ from the way that

convenient access to these natural landscapes

is provided to people, whether for active

recreational uses and passive use as regarding

the viewing/observation of scenic landscapes.

86


GNP builds upon the crosscutting strategy of

the environment and policies of the Ministry

of Environment without any intention to

reformulate new policies, but underlines

the importance of the fact that development

proposals from GNP should occur in the

framework of ambitious policies to protect

the environment in general and mainstream

these policies in the framework of the

development of various economic sectors.

The Strategic Environmental Assessment

accompanying the General National Plan

document will play an important role in

the integration of environmental protection

measures and their implementation by the

GNP. The legal framework applicable to the

design of territorial plans obliges all planning

authorities that will undertake the design of

territorial plans of lower hierarchies, pursuant

to the GNP, to develop strategic environmental

assessment document for each of these plans.

Environmental quality and therefore of the

whole natural system is an essential factor for

enhancing the competitiveness of Albania in

the global economy market. These findings are

highlighted for the importance they have to be

implemented to regional and local plans that

will follow the GNP.

The importance and economic value of

the natural system

The natural system and the benefits it offers

are an important economic value. According

to international initiatives, it is recommended

that the economic value of ecosystems

and biodiversity is reflected not only in the

decision-making, but also in the accounting

and reporting systems 28 . This recommendation

is in line with global Aichi targets.

In the national context, the protected areas

(PAs), national parks (NPs), and natural areas

represent some of the greatest values of the

country from the following perspectives:

• Biological,

• Ecological,

• Economic,

• Natural Heritage,

• Social and Cultural.

They can convert into an effective way to create

good economic incomes through sustainable

development, apart from converting into strong

integration elements not only in the Balkan

context but also in the European one.

Moreover, protected areas are considered

as strengths for the sustainable tourist

development.

"They should become an integral part of the

development of the region in which they are

located and a leading force to find ways to

improve the quality of life of people living near

or within parks without prejudice to the

fundamental values of nature” 29

3.2.2 The natural system as an element

for diversification and interconnection

of economic sectors

The interconnection of the natural system

with other economic sectors is one of the

GNP approaches to sustainable economic

development. In this respect the ways of

its approximation change in line with the

characteristics of the urban centres where

they are located.

Local centres and localities (cooperation and

reinforcement):

- Urban development should be encouraged

within urban areas utilizing the existing

constructed infrastructure;

- Soils with good fertile features, but which

cannot be used for agriculture should be

planted where possible. This would increase

economic opportunities in the area for the

use of timber or for the improvement of the

natural landscape and the growth of tourist

attractions;

- Soils with not very good agricultural features

are recommended to be used as photovoltaic

28

Following the international initiative for the visibility of the economic values of nature TEEB. http://www.teebweb.org/

29

Conference Dinaric Arc Parks - http://www.parksdinarides.org/sq/t-reja/wwf

87


or wind parks, especially for areas near

existing electric stations and network;

- In soils with intensive agricultural use it is

recommended to reuse agricultural waste for

generation of electricity. This would enable

the development of renewable energy and

protection of the quality of water flows from

the dispersal of agricultural waste;

- Promotion of water flows for water sports

and activities.

In secondary and tertiary urban centres

(consolidation and strengthening):

- Prevention of urban dispersion;

- Prohibition, where possible, and reduction of

the loss of agricultural land and natural free

land because of urban use;

- Protection of rural landscape features and

minimization of its fragmentation, maintaining

as clear as possible the characteristic

differences between urban and rural

landscape;

- The creation of green infrastructure for

small and large cities, that will allow residents

access to natural areas and recreational

activities which will take place in them;

- Maintain and where possible enhance the

environmental protected areas and biodiversity

in them;

- Protection of construction buildings and civil

engineering structures with characteristic

landscape values of historical and cultural

tradition.

The process of economic diversification has

already started in some places and may

be further intensified and extended. The

potential for increasing the use of these

natural resources requires wise management

of all environmental resources in the form of

landscape protection policies, policies for new

housing settlements, preservation of cultural

heritage and biodiversity.

Coastal areas offer an attractive panoramic

environment, which is both highly productive

and provides a rare biological diversity.

This area accommodates a wide range of

economic and recreational activities. The

Drafting of Integrated Plans on Coastal

Zone Management is indispensable, as it

will provide an integrated approach to the

interactions between economic sectors and

various authorities, whose activity is linked

to the coast and the legal framework. The

Integrated Cross-sectorial Plan developed in

parallel with the GNP, takes a special value in

these conditions, as it provides such a unifying

overview.

In urban, secondary, tertiary centres and

local centres (regeneration):

- Environment as a tourist product that

attracts visitors by the quality of the natural,

historical - and cultural landscape and

biodiversity, as well as a wide range of options

for the development of natural activities;

- Attracting entrepreneurs and people who

are characterized by skills and a wide range of

technical and intellectual expertise, for whom

living in small towns where environmental

quality is guaranteed, enables them the quality

of life that they require;

- Advanced development of communication

infrastructure, which can provide the

extension of economic activities degree and of

enterprises located in a certain place.

88


Vision and objectives of sectorial documents on the natural system

The Crosscutting Environmental

Strategy 2015-2020 defines Albania as "a

country with a sustainable social and economic

development, protecting natural resources

from pollution and degradation, through

their integrated management and promoting

environmental values and putting them to the

benefit of economic prosperity."

The objectives to be achieved during this

period also supported on cross-sectorial

policies of environmental protection and

climate change are:

Protected areas

- Increasing protected areas to 17% of

the territory, through extension and their

integrated management;

- Identifying and establishing the network

"Natura 2000" and preserving the natural

landscape;

- Ensuring the conservation status for 5% of

threatened species and habitats;

The vision of the National Agency

of Protected Areas in Albania in

the Protected Areas Development

Strategy 2015-2020:

“Protected areas in Albania convert into

territories for the protection and conservation

of nature and biodiversity, promoting their

varied values (tourist/recreational, cultural,

gastronomic, aesthetic, landscape values,

health, spiritual, etc.), at the service of

sustainable development with a positive impact

of local communities and increasing their

welfare”;

Waste

- Increasing the amount of waste going to

landfills to 45%;

- Recycling and composting of urban waste at

around 55%;

- Implementing the rehabilitation plans for

9 priority hotspots and drafting plans for the

remaining hotspots;

of the Action Plans on Water Resource

Management by 2020;

- Continuous monitoring of the quality of

surface and ground waters from institutions in

collaboration with MoE;

- Rehabilitating damaged river beds by 25% by

2020;

- Managing surface and ground waters in order

to reduce their pollution by 95% compared to

2011;

Forests

- Sustainable management of forest and

grassland resources;

- Comprehensive inclusion of local

stakeholders in the management and

sustainable development of this sector;

- Establishing payment schemes for the

ecosystem;

- Providing the regulatory, institutional and

economic framework for the implementation

of sustainable forest management;

- Full (100%) transposition of the European

legislation in the field of forestry;

- 100% coverage with breeding plans for all

forests economies at national level;

- Reducing by 40% the illegal cutting from the

forest fund;

- Rehabilitation through afforestation and

reforestation of the burnt areas and the

rehabilitation of forage pasture and tree

planting to 15% of forest and pasture area by

2020;

- Preventing further erosion of forest and

pasture land in 25% of area, by 2020;

Air

- Reducing by 40% the pollution level in urban

areas;

- Achieving levels of air pollutants based on

human health, at the respective values: NOx

- 40 µ/m³ for PM10 - 40 µ/m³, for PM 2,5-25

g/m3 and 20 g/m 3 and SO2 -125 µ/m³ for 24

hours or 20 µ/m³ per year.

Water

- Carrying out the protection and improvement

of water quality through the implementation

89


TROPOJE

TROPOJE

KOPLIK

KOPLIK

SHKODER

VAU IDEJES

FUSHE-ARREZ

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KUKES

PUKE

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VAU IDEJES

FUSHE-ARREZ

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LEZHE

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MAT

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KRUJE

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KLOS

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RROGOZHINE

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PEQIN

DIVJAKE

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CERRIK

LIBRAZHD

PRRENJAS

BELSH

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KUCOVE

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RROSKOVEC

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POGRADEC

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MALIQ

PUSTEC

PATOS

BERAT

MALLAKASTER

POLICAN

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MALLAKASTER

POLICAN

KORCE

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VLORE

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MEMALIAJ

KELCYRE

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MEMALIAJ

KELCYRE

KOLONJE

TEPELENE

PERMET

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Map 3.3 The current situation of the natural system 2015 Map 3.4 The territorial proposals for the natural system, GNP 2030

90


3.2.3 Proposals

Photo credit by Mariusz Kluzniak

GNP vision for the natural system is in line

with the crosscutting environmental strategy

vision and the protected areas development

strategy. GNP approach to this system is

expressed through two concepts: Promotion

and Access.

In this context, the solutions proposed by the

GNP are:

a) Increasing the natural areas through the

expansion of protected areas and natural

connecting corridors along river valleys;

b) Including three national parks in the

national network of protected areas:

• The park of Buna

• The park of Alps

• The park of Vjosa

Concurrently, it is proposed the addition of the

Emerald Network in the network of protected

areas. In all, it represents a network where

ecosystems, habitats, species, landscapes

and other natural features of pan-European

relevance will be maintained, according to

the criteria and provisions of the law "On

protected areas". According to the objectives

set in the crosscutting strategy this network

must be completed by 2020, which will be

the basis for inclusion in the Pan-European

Ecological Network (Natura 2000). The system

of protected areas includes also the natural

corridors, which should be considered as

areas suitable for the development of a soft

environmental friendly infrastructure.

Photo credit by Alket Islami

Photo credit by Roland Dorozhani/EcoAlbania

Figure 3.8 Three natural parks proposed by GNP: the Park

of Buna, the Park of Alps and the Park of Vjosa

91


Kune-

Vain

Emerald Network

National Parks

Natural Corridors Bicycle Routes Europian Green Belt

Figure 3.9 Main elements of the natural system

c) Achieving the target of 20% terrestrial

protected area and 15% of marine protected

area by 2030;

d) Creating recreational spaces and natural

attractions along the river valleys;

e) Introducing the national network of bicycles,

which accesses and crosses natural areas and

those of historical and cultural heritage;

f) Increasing public participation in decision

making and implementing decisions for the

management of

natural systems;

g) Consolidating and increasing the

performance for the well management of

nature, PAs and biodiversity of central and

local actors;

h) Mainstreaming management plans into the

planning system and local plans;

i) GLP shall be developed simultaneously with

the management plans, in order to achieve the

cohesion of planning instruments, forecasts

and deadlines;

j) Increasing the marine and coastal protected

areas up to 10% in line with the Aichi

objectives of the Convention on Biodiversity

2020;

k) Supporting the sustainable development of

the natural system for recreational purposes

and for the promotion of ecotourism;

l) Sustainable, economic and ecological

management of protected areas;

m) Integrating Albania in the Balkan and

European context through projects for "Dinaric

Arc Eco-region” and the "European Green

Belt";

n) Including the natural system in the

economic development chain;

o) Reforestation and regeneration projects of

degraded areas by natural phenomena such

as erosion and floods, but also due to the

human activity.

92


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SHËNGJIN

Lure

DIBER

41°40'0"N

Lumi Mat

Lumi Ishëm

Kepi i

Rodonit

Kune-

Vain

FUSHË KUQE

ISHËM

KURBIN

LAÇ

KRUJE

Ulez

BURREL

MAT

KLOS

Luzni-Bulac

FUSHË BULQIZË

MELAN

DIBER

Via Skanderbeg

41°40'0"N

41°30'0"N

Gjiri i

Lumi Erzen

Lalzit

SUKTH

VORE

KATUND I RI

DURRES Amfiteatri

KAMEZ

Mali me Gropa

BULQIZE

MARTANESH

ZERQAN

41°30'0"N

41°20'0"N

Via Egnatia

Porti i Durresit

SHIJAK

DAJT

NDROQ

PETRELË

GOLEM TIRANE

BËRZHITË

PEZË

Peze

KAVAJE

Petrele

KRRABË

SHËN GJERGJ

Kuturman-

Qafa e Bushit

STEBLEVË

Shebenike-

Jabllanice

STRUGE

Via Egnatia

41°20'0"N

41°10'0"N

SYNEJ

BALDUSHK

ELBASAN

LIBRAZHD

OHRID

41°10'0"N

RROGOZHINE

41°0'0"N

Lumi Shkumbin

KRYEVIDH

Karavasta

GJOCAJ

PEQIN

BELSH

CERRIK

TREGAN

GJINAR

PRRENJAS

Liqeni i OHRIT

UDENISHT

41°0'0"N

DIVJAKE

LUSHNJE

KLOS

Zona natyrore dhe kulturore e Ohrit

Liqeni i PRESPËS

LEGEND

40°50'0"N

Via Appia

Roma- Brindisi

Lumi Seman

Grykederdhja

Seman

Apollonia

TOPOJË

URA

VAJGURORE

KUCOVE

Itinerari

GRAMSH

KODOVJAT

POGRADEC

Varrezat e Selces se Poshtme

PUSTEC

40°50'0"N

Main port

Metropolis

40°30'0"N

40°40'0"N

Lumi Vjosë

Pishe-

Poro

Vjose-

Narte

Porti i

Vlores

KUMAN

DERMENAS FIER

QENDËR

Levan

PATOS

VLORE

ÇAKRAN

SELENICE

BALLSH

RROSKOVEC

MALLAKASTER

BERAT

POLICAN

Mali i

Tomorrit

Bogove

SKRAPAR

MALIQ

Voskopoje

KORCE

Nikolice

Rezervati

Kangonji

Bredhi i

Drenoves DEVOLL

Morrava

KASTORIA

40°30'0"N

40°40'0"N

Primary centre

Secondary centre

Tertiary centre

Specialized local centre

Natural monument

40°10'0"N

40°20'0"N

Vlora 2

Karaburun

ORIKUM

Llogara

SEVASTËR

HIMARE

KURVELESH

TEPELENE

MEMALIAJ

KELCYRE

Parku

Natyror

ZAGORIE

Zheji

GJIROKASTER

PERMET

PETRAN

FRASHËR

KOLONJE

Piskal-

Shqeri

Germenj-

Shelegur

LESKOVIK

40°10'0"N

40°20'0"N

Protected areas network

(existing and proposed)

Areas having tourism development as a

priority (existing)

Proposed natural corridors

Forest land

Sailing route

LUKOVË

Rezervati

Rrezome

ANTIGONË

LIBOHOVE

Bicycle route

40°0'0"N

DELVINE

DROPULL

KONICA

40°0'0"N

Tourist area/site

Existing UNESCO site

39°50'0"N

Porti i Sarandes SARANDE

FINIQ

Proposed UNESCO site

39°50'0"N

Panoramic coastal road

39°40'0"N

0 5 10 20 30 40

Km

KSAMIL

XARRË

Butrint

KONISPOL

IOANNINA

39°40'0"N

European Green Belt

Coastal area of national importance

FILIATES

Map 3.5 Natural system, GNP 2030

93


3.3 Agricultural System

The context

Agriculture has traditionally been one of

the most important branches of economic

development. Agricultural products are part of

the regional identity formation of the country,

with a wide range of environmental, natural

and climate changes.

Although technological developments will

replace the human role in many agricultural

processes, this sector still remains the primary

source of economic income and employment

opportunities in rural areas. However, the

agricultural sector will have to face and

adapt to the constantly growing customer

demands as a result of the modernization

and restructuring of trading typology and the

consequences of climate change. Efficiency in

the food sector and agriculture together with

fisheries and forestry as well as diversification

of farmers' activities are key components of

the rural economy.

The study of the typology of communes and

municipalities 31 undertaken by INSTAT 32

reflects the physical characteristics of each

administrative unit (former commune). It is

noted therein that from 373 local government

units (Albania had before the administrative

- territorial reform), 102 possess agricultural

economies in lowland areas and 140 own

agricultural economies in mountain areas.

Based on the data published by INSTAT 33 24%

(or approx. 699,000 ha) of the general surface

of the country is classified as agricultural land,

of which only 561,000 ha is arable land.

About 43% or 304,000 ha of agricultural land is

situated in the agricultural area with generally

good production qualities.

This classification is very important for the

General National Plan, as it has helped in the

orientation of specialization of the country's

functional and economic areas.

The agricultural sector in our country is

considered among the sectors with major

impact on the indicators of the gross domestic

product values, with 16.79% in 2009 and

19.63% in 2013. 30 The figures recorded during

this time period show the increase of economic

sector of agriculture, forestry and fisheries in

the gross domestic product.

Agricultural development is also important in

terms of improving the living standards and

eradicating poverty. Beyond the direct effects,

the growth of income and food for farming

families will have an impact on the standard

of living both in urban and rural areas through

food products with lower prices.

30

For the period 2008-2013 (referring to statistical yearbook, 2010-2014/ Economy & Finances, tab. 10 p.94) it is presented the

structure of the gross domestic product by economic activity, agriculture, forestry.

31

The territorial administrative reform, replaced the term "commune" with its relevant changes with the term "constituent

administrative unit".

32

Typology of communes and municipalities, Census 2011, p.35, May 2014

33

INSTAT, Statistical Yearbook 2010 - 2014, Agriculture Tab.1 Land structure, p.134

94


Urban

Centres

The capital

The capital

Centres with national importance

Centres with national importance

Regional centres of agglomeration

Regional centres of agglomeration

Local centres

Local centres

Peripheral local units

Suburban Metropolitan with high status

Suburban Metropolitan with high status

Suburban Metropolitan with low status

Suburban Metropolitan with low status

Suburban with low status

Suburban with low status

Suburban with high status

Suburban with high status

Rural

Special types

Non-urban communes with mining/energy orientation

Non-urban communes with mining/energy orien

Serives and industrial communes

Serives and industrial communes

Non-urban communes with touristic orientation

Non-urban communes with touristic orientation

Agricultural local units

50 km

50 km

Commune/municipality border

Commune/municipality border

Agglomerations 2011

Agglomerations 2011

Local mixed lowland agricultural units

Local mixed lowland agricultural units

Local mixed mountain agricultural units

Local mixed mountain agricultural units

Local lowland agricultural units

Local lowland agricultural units

Local mountain agricultural units

Local mountain agricultural units

Figure 3.10 Typology of communes and municipalities. Source: INSTAT, Census 2011

95


3.3.1 Drawbacks of the agricultural

sector in the country

In the past, but also now, damages to the

agricultural land fund have been observed,

wherein concurrently it is noticed the reduction

of agricultural land fund due to informal

construction, unfounded expansion of urban

spaces in detriment of agricultural land,

damage to the river beds, etc. Due to the

division of land (Law no. 7501), agricultural

land is fragmented into small plots, which

significantly constrain the large-scale use of

agricultural machinery.

The mechanism of the agricultural sector still

remains a challenge to face in the coming

years.

Closely related to the agricultural economic

sector is also the food processing industry of

agricultural products, which as an important

branch of Albanian economy, has recorded

an evident and consistent development in the

recent years. A more significant growth is

observed in the sub-branch of milk processing

(dairy), meat etc. Among the key factors that

cause a good dysfunction of the agricultural

system may be:

from uncontrolled internal demographic

movements. This phenomenon affects the

degradation and reduction of agricultural land.

• Floods and infrastructure amortization

(irrigation - drainage system)

- Leaving the agricultural areas bare

(uncultivated) in the north and south of the

country,

- Erosion,

- Deforestation,

- Amortization or demolition of relevant

protective infrastructure (protective dams,

control gates, malfunctioning of pumping

stations, blockage of drainage channels etc.),

- Uncontrolled extraction of inert materials

from river beds, endangering the river

deviation, disposal of industrial waste or inerts

along the riverbanks.

• Distribution and fragmentation of the

agricultural land

- The change of the political system, which

was accompanied by the destruction of large

farms (cooperatives) and in the best case, their

replacement with small farms (family farms).

- The legal framework, the Law No.7501 by

which the land was fragmented.

• Demographic movements (internal

migration + emigration)

- Reduction of the active workforce in this

sector. According to the World Bank, 75% of

immigrants of our country are men, which has

led to significant reduction of the workforce in

agriculture. 34

• Informal constructions

- "Usurpation" of agricultural land on the

outskirts of large urban centres of the country

34

Modelling migration dynamics in Albania, a hazard function approach, Azzarri, C. and Carletto, C. 2009

96


Agricultural land Organic farms Distribution network

Figure 3.11 (a) (b) (c) Agricultural system diagram“Metabolism of Albania”

Balanca e Ushqimit në Shqipëri

Food balance në in kiloton Albania (kton) in kiloton (kton)

IMPORT PRODUCTION CONSUMPTION EXPORT

115

45

222

117 57 475

meat & lifestock

starchy roots

sugar crops

Source: FAO

Burimi: FAO

230 701 1 376

oil crops

processed

fruits & vegetables

cereals

feed

sugar

vegetable oils

animal products

waste

246

Figure 3.12 Food balance in Albania “Metabolism of Albania”

food

aquac products

3 398 190

biofuels

& others

97


AGRICULTURE

URBAN METABOLISM ALBANIA

Food production

Agriculture

Land use agriculture

Permanent crops

(olives,grapes and citrus)

Mixed farming

(grains, potatoes, vegetables and livestock)

Biological food

Organic operators

Medicinal herbs

Food network

Distribution, processing and trade

Food cluster

Sea harbour

Airport

Highways

Shipping connection

Landscape conditions

Nature

Protected environment

98 Map 3.6 Agricultural System “Metabolism of Albania”, source: NTPA


3.3.2 The approach of the General

National Plan on the agricultural sector

Even in the agricultural system, polycentric

development of the country highlights the need

for defining and identifying the main poles

of agricultural land. Given the geographical

position of agricultural land, the classification

of local economies, the history of development

in the agricultural economy and connecting

infrastructure network, GNP proposes the

consolidation of 6 agricultural poles in urban

centres of Tirana, Lushnja, Saranda, Korça and

Shkodra.

The determination of these centres as

agricultural poles necessarily means

possessing and providing some facilities

towards the agricultural products.

In these centres, it is envisaged the

establishment and consolidation of:

- Research centres for agricultural product

analysis,

- Building structures with sufficient capacity

for the collection, processing and packaging of

various agricultural products of local farmers,

- The creation of local markets for the

promotion and marketing of bio-organic

products, protection of remote mountainous

areas, forests, forages and other areas

suitable for the cultivation of aromatic plants

from abusive informal interventions, in order to

ensure continuity of cultivation and collection

of various types of aromatic plants, which are

widely used in the pharmaceutical market,

- Promoting research and development links

between the innovation centres and processing

of food products in order to form the country's

agricultural points/poles. This may lead to the

development of agricultural tourism in country.

In the context of improving the service

functioning of the water irrigation and

drainage system of agricultural land, GNP in

line with the main objectives of MARDWA (the

Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development

and Water Administration) determines the

following objectives:

a) Sustainable completion of water needs,

through rehabilitation and modernization of

irrigation systems,

b) Sustainable management of irrigation

systems, through the separation of powers

and responsibilities for the maintenance

and rehabilitation of irrigation infrastructure

between the central government,

administrative units and water use

organizations,

c) Ensuring with priority the drainage system

of agricultural area in the western lowland,

through the rehabilitation, improvement of

existing infrastructure and increased capacity

of hydropower plants.

d) Reducing the risk from river and sea floods,

through redesigning of protective structures,

considering new urban developments near

rivers and their deltas.

3.3.2.1 Development of agricultural/

agro-processing poles

Based on the data from INSTAT, 24% of

Albania's territorial area is considered

agricultural land. In 2014 the arable area

and the planted agricultural area amounted

to 60% or 14% of the entire territory.

Agricultural products, which are produced

mainly in the Western Lowlands, in Korça

and other large rural spaces, are generally

deposited in small collection sites, established

by local entrepreneurs or collected and

stored individually. Significant amount of

agricultural products, due to the lack of proper

management, and the impossibility of having

large collection, storage, processing and

marketing sties for the agricultural products

are perished still without being traded, thus

causing an economic risk to the local farmers.

The lack of the necessary infrastructure in

terms of the agricultural product collection

affects negatively the economy of the

local farmers and the development of the

agricultural sector, by significantly inhibiting or

reducing the amount of planted crops.

The General National Plan, in the main

strategies for the sustainable development

of rural areas and the improvement of the

standard of living of residents in rural areas,

foresees the undertaking of initiatives by the

relevant authorities for the construction and

management of large sites for the collection,

99


processing and marketing of agricultural

products. By 2030 six large collection centres

are expected to operate. Namely, the cities

designated as agricultural poles, due to

the implementation of such strategies are

Tirana, Shkodra, Korça, Lushnja, Saranda

and Dibra. In each of these cities, the General

National Plan based on the economic and

social analysis of infrastructure, suggests the

establishing of large agricultural centres or

increasing and modernizing the existing ones.

These recommended agricultural centres fulfil

at least the following services:

1) Possession and provision of enough storage

space to cope with the amount of agricultural

production in different seasons.

2) Possession and provision of respective

conditions and technologies for the agroprocessing

of agricultural products, while

simultaneously enabling the control of food

quality, according to the European Union

standards.

3) Allocation of laboratory rooms where

analyses of the physical conditions of each

crop are carried out, by means of taking the

relevant samples.

4) Possession of advanced technologies in

the area of research and development of

seeds and seedlings, in order to develop the

agricultural sector with the same pace of the

European Union.

5) Possession of technical and specialized

people in the marketing of agricultural

product.

3.3.2.2 Bio-agriculture/organic farming

Organic farming in our country, thanks to

climate conditions, geomorphology of the

agricultural land and traditional knowledge

of local farmers, has many favourable

advantages to expand and grow further as

an agricultural sub-sector.

The European market and the

Mediterranean market, due to the

development of elite and culinary tourism,

show positive trends in the ever increasing

consumption of bio-organic products.

The document drafted by MARDWA 35 ,

"Crosscutting strategy on agricultural and

rural development, 2014-2020", according

to the figures set out therein, shows that

in 2011 more than 120 farms were certified

as organic producers. In Albania, 662 ha of

land are cultivated with organic products.

Over 90% of the certified organic products

consist of medicinal and aromatic plants

collected spontaneously. Organic farms

operate almost throughout the territory of

the country, concentrated more as locations

mainly in spacious flat rural areas as

Tirana, Fier, Lushnja, Kavaja, Vlora, Durres,

or in mountainous towns such as Skrapar,

Pogradec, Kruja, Korça.

Beyond improving the quality of food

products, organic farming simultaneously

displays considerable impact on the

economic growth of the tourism sector. In

Albania, agro-tourism, mountainous/lake/

sea/river/cultural and historical tourism,

etc., are closely associated with the culinary

identity of the respective areas. Here

we can mention Theth, Dardha in Korça,

Voskopoja etc. These areas have a high

potential for the development of different

types of tourism thanks to the food and the

bio organic products, for which they are

characterized.

Establishing competitive farms

According to the data published by INSTAT

the number of farms operating in the

market, from 2013 until 2014, has been

increasing at national level, though not at

a very considerable pace. Among the main

factors affecting the incomplete efficiency of

local farms can be sorted as follows:

• Lack of a comprehensive support

infrastructure serving the development of

farms in rural areas;

• Uncontrolled demographic movements

and the phenomenon of human resources

reduction in rural areas;

• Fragmentation into small plots of

agricultural land;

35

Published in the Official Journal no.709, dated 29/10/2014

100


• Lack of well-functioning of local

agricultural product marketing.

Based on the publication of the strategic

document of the MARDWA for 2014-2020, the

average farm size has increased from 1.14 ha

in 2007 to 1.20 ha in 2012, while the size of

the plot has remained unchanged indicating

a high level of land fragmentation that

characterizes the agricultural sector.

For the purposes of increasing the economic

efficiency of farmers, a faster pace of

agricultural farms establishment in the

country is required. As reflected in the

"Agriculture Statistics, 2014" published by

the Institute of Statistics, the total number

of farms operating in Albania in 2014 was

352,315. Among the 12 regions of the

country, the region of Fier has the highest

number of farms in 2014, namely 52,169

farms, while the region of Kukes counts for

the smallest number of them, with 10,108

farms.

Out of 350,916 farms in 2012, more than

300,000 of them had their focus of activity

oriented to the production of field crops and

livestock.

routes/long natural paths into attractions

with a high potential for adventure tourism

development.

- The development of rural tourism and

other activities related to tourism such

as cultural tourism, natural tourism and

mountain tourism, summer tourism, etc.

by maintaining/reconstructing and putting

at the disposal of tourist accommodation

sector the buildings/dwellings/traditional

houses of cultural and architectural

value, for business purposes such as

accommodation, food, leisure, trade, etc.

- The processing/marketing in small-scale

of agricultural products such as milk, sheep

and goat milk, fruit/mushrooms/medicinal

and aromatic plants, including the collection

of wild plants and other traditional products

to improve food processing based on

standards of hygiene and professional

enterprise.

- Alongside the development of the typical

agricultural activities on the farm, the

development of atypical agricultural

activities, such as beekeeping and

agricultural cultivation of aromatic plants,

are recommended.

Publications from relevant regional

departments of the Ministry of

Agriculture, Rural Development and Water

Administration and the Institute of Statistics

show that the production efficiency of

these farms, due to the fragmentation of

agricultural land, needs to be improved.

- The recognition and protection of the

role of farmers as guardians of natural

resources.

- The assessment of the potential of the

country's forestry sector using degraded

forest areas as land with potential for

cultivation of local agricultural products.

- The promotion of economic forestry sector

(wood processing/joinery etc.), as an added

option to the green construction.

- The promotion of rural tourism through

the promotion of forest areas, turning

101


19°0'0"E

19°10'0"E

19°10'0"E

19°20'0"E

19°20'0"E

19°30'0"E

19°30'0"E

19°40'0"E

19°40'0"E

19°50'0"E

19°50'0"E

20°0'0"E

20°0'0"E

20°10'0"E

20°10'0"E

20°20'0"E

20°20'0"E

20°30'0"E

20°30'0"E

Ë

20°40'0"E

20°40'0"E

20°50'0"E

20°50'0"E

21°0'0"E

21°0'0"E

21°10'0"E

21°10'0"E

42°50'0"N

KOLASHIN

BERANE

POZAJE

42°50'0"N

ANDRIJEVICA

42°40'0"N

PEJE

PRISHTINE

42°40'0"N

Vermosh-

Guci

PLAV

PODGORICE

Valbone

42°30'0"N

42°30'0"N

Qafe Morine

42°20'0"N

Hani i

Hotit

TROPOJE

BUJAN

GJAKOVE

MALESI E MADHE

Zhub

42°20'0"N

FIERZË

42°10'0"N

Liqeni

K O P L I K

i

SHKODRËS

SHKODER

FUSHE-ARREZ

HAS

Morine - Vermice

PRIZREN

42°10'0"N

Zogaj

VAU I

DEJES

PUKE

QAF - MAL

Shishtavec

42°0'0"N

Muriqan

KUKES

TETOVE

42°0'0"N

ULQIN

GJEGJAN

SHISHTAVEC

Puljaj

VELIPOJË

41°50'0"N

Lumi Buna

Porti i Shengjinit

LEZHE

MIRDITE

LURË

41°50'0"N

RUBIK

KALA E DODËS

GOSTIVAR

Lumi Drini i Vjetër

DIBER

41°40'0"N

Lumi Mat

FUSHË KUQE

KURBIN

ULEZ

MAT

MELAN

41°40'0"N

Lumi Ishëm

Blate

41°30'0"N

ISHËM

KRUJE

KLOS

FUSHË BULQIZË

DIBER

Vicisht

41°30'0"N

Lumi Erzen

SUKTH

VORE

KATUND I RI

KAMEZ

BULQIZE

ZERQAN

MARTANESH

41°20'0"N

SHIJAK

DURRES

NDROQ

DAJT

SHËN GJERGJ

STEBLEVË

Stebleve

41°20'0"N

41°0'0"N

41°10'0"N

Porti i Durrësit

Lumi Shkumbin

KAVAJE

SYNEJ

KRYEVIDH

GOLEM

PEZË

RROGOZHINE

GJOCAJ

TIRANE

BALDUSHK

PEQIN

PETRELË

BËRZHITË

KRRABË

ELBASAN

CERRIK

TREGAN

GJINAR

LIBRAZHD

PRRENJAS

STRUGE

Qafe

Thane

Liqeni i OHRIT

OHRID

41°10'0"N

LEGEND

40°40'0"N

40°50'0"N

Lumi Vjosë

Lumi Seman

TOPOJË

DERMENAS

FIER

DIVJAKE

LUSHNJE

QENDËR

ÇAKRAN

KUMAN

URA

VAJGURORE

RROSKOVEC

PATOS

BALLSH

BELSH

KLOS

KUCOVE

BERAT

GRAMSH

KODOVJAT

POGRADEC

UDENISHT

MALIQ

VOSKOPOJË

Tushemisht

PUSTEC

Liqeni

i

PRESPËS

Stenjë

DEVOLL

Kapshtice

40°40'0"N

40°50'0"N

41°0'0"N

Metropolis

Primary centre

Secondary centre

Tertiary centre

Local specialized centre

Agricultural Technology Transfer Centre /

Fushe-Kruje, Lushnja, Vlora, Korca, Shkodra

40°30'0"N

MALLAKASTER

POLICAN

BOGOVË

SKRAPAR

KORCE

Agricultural pole

Shkodra, Dibra, Tirana, Lushnja, Korca, Saranda

Porti i Vlorës

SELENICE

VLORE

SEVASTER

MEMALIAJ

KASTORIA

40°30'0"N

Land with complex cultivation / agricultural land

Vineyards

40°20'0"N

ORIKUM

TEPELENE

KELCYRE

PERMET

FRASHËR

KOLONJE

40°20'0"N

Fruit trees

Olive grooves

40°10'0"N

HIMARE

KURVELESH

ZAGORIE

GJIROKASTER

PETRAN

LESKOVIK

40°10'0"N

Forest land

Municipality boundary

LUKOVË

ANTIGONË

LIBOHOVE

Tre Urat

Road infrastructure

River

40°0'0"N

DELVINE

DROPULL

Kakavije

KONICA

40°0'0"N

Water line

Dam (Group A)

39°50'0"N

Porti i Sarandës

FINIQ

Dam (Group B)

SARANDE

39°50'0"N

Dam (Group C)

KSAMIL

XARRË

KONISPOL

IOANNINA

Main port

39°40'0"N

0 5 10 20 30 40

Km

Qafe Bote

FILIATES

39°40'0"N

Border crossing points (existing)

Border crossing points (proposed)

Map 3.7 Agricultural system, GNP 2030

102


19°0'0"E

19°10'0"E

19°10'0"E

19°20'0"E

19°20'0"E

19°30'0"E

19°30'0"E

19°40'0"E

19°40'0"E

19°50'0"E

19°50'0"E

20°0'0"E

20°0'0"E

20°10'0"E

20°10'0"E

20°20'0"E

20°20'0"E

20°30'0"E

20°30'0"E

Ë

20°40'0"E

20°40'0"E

20°50'0"E

20°50'0"E

21°0'0"E

21°0'0"E

21°10'0"E

21°10'0"E

42°50'0"N

KOLASHIN

BERANE

POZAJE

42°50'0"N

ANDRIJEVICA

42°40'0"N

PEJE

PRISHTINE

42°40'0"N

PLAV

PODGORICE

42°30'0"N

42°30'0"N

GJAKOVE

42°20'0"N

TROPOJE

42°20'0"N

MALESI E MADHE

42°10'0"N

Liqeni

i

SHKODRËS

SHKODER

FUSHE-ARREZ

HAS

PRIZREN

42°10'0"N

VAU I

DEJES

PUKE

42°0'0"N

TETOVE

42°0'0"N

ULQIN

KUKES

41°50'0"N

Lumi Buna

LEZHE

MIRDITE

41°50'0"N

Arable crops

Porti i Shengjinit

GOSTIVAR

Lumi Drini i Vjetër

DIBER

41°40'0"N

Lumi Mat

MAT

41°40'0"N

Lumi Ishëm

KURBIN

DIBER

41°30'0"N

KLOS

Lumi Erzen

KRUJE

BULQIZE

41°30'0"N

DURRES

VORE

KAMEZ

41°20'0"N

SHIJAK

41°20'0"N

41°10'0"N

Porti i Durrësit

KAVAJE

RROGOZHINE

PEQIN

TIRANE

ELBASAN

LIBRAZHD

PRRENJAS

STRUGE

OHRID

41°10'0"N

Fruit trees

41°0'0"N

Lumi Shkumbin

DIVJAKE

LUSHNJE

CERRIK

BELSH

POGRADEC

Liqeni i OHRIT

Liqeni

i

PRESPËS

41°0'0"N

Vineyards

40°50'0"N

Lumi Seman

KUCOVE

GRAMSH

40°50'0"N

40°40'0"N

Lumi Vjosë

FIER

RROSKOVEC

PATOS

URA

VAJGURORE

BERAT

MALIQ

PUSTEC

KORCE

40°40'0"N

Olive grooves

DEVOLL

MALLAKASTER

POLICAN

SKRAPAR

Citruses

40°30'0"N

Porti i Vlorës

VLORE

SELENICE

MEMALIAJ

KASTORIA

40°30'0"N

40°20'0"N

TEPELENE

KELCYRE

PERMET

KOLONJE

40°20'0"N

40°10'0"N

HIMARE

GJIROKASTER

40°10'0"N

40°0'0"N

LIBOHOVE

DROPULL

KONICA

40°0'0"N

Livestock

DELVINE

39°50'0"N

Porti i Sarandës

SARANDE

FINIQ

39°50'0"N

KONISPOL

IOANNINA

39°40'0"N

39°40'0"N

FILIATES

Map 3.8 Regionalization of agricultural products

103


Berat County

Ton/head

Dibra County

Bees

Sheep

Fruit

trees

Goats

Vineyards

Corn

Greenhouse

vegetables

Fruit

trees

Olive

grooves

Potatoes

0

5000

10000 15000 20000 25000 30000

0 20000 40000 60000 80000 100000 120000 140000

Olive grooves

Greenhouse

vegetables

Vineyards

Fruit trees

Bees

23082 18386 26460 22295 0,2

Potatoes

Fruit trees Corn Goats Sheep

25598 20071 30946 63000 125000

Durres County

Ton/head

Elbasan County

Wheat

Cattle/

cow

Vineyards

Corn

Greenhouse

vegetables

0 20000 40000 60000 80000 100000 120000 140000

Greenhouse

vegetables

Corn

Vineyards

Cattle/cow

Graphic 3.2 Agricultural production as per the county

Wheat

25598 20071 30946 63000 125000

Greenhouse

vegetables

Sheep

Fodder

Livestock/

cow

Corn

Vineyards

Goat

Wheat

Beans

Olive

grooves

0 100000 200000 300000 400000 500000 600000 700000

Olive grooves Beans Wheat Goats Vineyards

14833 4509 40801 127000 47105

Corn

Cattle/cows

Fodder

Sheep

Greenhouse

vegetables

47105 43000 666154 177000 5522

104


Fier County

Ton/heads

Gjirokastra County

Pigs

Cattle/cows

Corn

Wheat

Fodder

Olive grooves

Legumes

Vegetables

and watermelon

Greenhouse

vegetables

Wheat

Fodder

Vineyards

Sheep

Goats

0 200000 400000 600000 800000 1000000 12000001400000 1600000 1800000 0 500000 100000 150000 200000 250000 300000

Greenhouse vegetables

Vegetables and

watermelon Legumes Olive grooves

38552 414032 8472 27436

Goats Sheep Vineyards Fodder Wheat

128000 270000 14112 206854 9000

Fodder

Wheat

Corn

Cattle/cows

Pigs

1710079 73904 71436 50000 21000

Korça County

Ton/heads

Kukes County

Cattle/cows

Goats

Bees (honey)

Sheep

Fodder

Legumes

Wheat

Potatoes

Goats

Fruit

trees

Sheep

Potaoes

Bees

honey

0 50000 100000 150000 200000 250000 300000 350000 400000 450000 0 50000 100000 150000 200000 250000 300000

Potatoes Wheat Legumes Fodder

64164 62580 3557 403321

Bees (honey) Potatoes Sheep Fruit trees Goats

128000 270000 14112 206854 9000

Sheep Bees (honey) Goats Cattle/cows

267000 0,4 97000 34000

105


Lezha County

Ton/head

Shkodra County

Olive grooves

Vineyards

Bees

(Honey)

Fodder

Wheat

Legumes

Cattle/

cows

Corn

Corn

Pigs

Pigs

0 10000 20000 30000 40000 50000 60000 70000 0 5000 10000 15000 20000 25000 30000

Pigs

Corn

Legumes

Wheat

Vineyards

Olive grooves

Pigs

Corn

Legumes

Wheat

Vineyards

Olive grooves

66000 26908 1318 11954 4343 1579

66000 26908 1318 11954 4343 1579

Tirana County

Ton/head

Vlora County

Cattle/cows

Corn

Fodder

Goats

Olive groves

Greenhouse

vegetables

Vineyards

Vegetables &

watermelon

Olive groves

Woolen

livestock

Bees (honey)

Citrus

50000 100000 150000 200000 250000 300000350000 400000 450000 500000 50000 100000 150000 200000 250000 300000 350000 400000

Vegetables and

watermelon

Vineyards

Greenhouse

vegetables

Olive grooves

Fodder

Cattle/cows

Citrus

Bees (honey)

Sheep

132060 17480 7362 7507 436069 20000 10657 0,6 338000

Olive grooves

Goats

Corn

13916 127000 34365

106


3.3.3 3 GNP proposals for the

agricultural system

Objective: Efficiency for a competitive

agricultural sector

- About 40% of the total area in Albania is

classified as agricultural land (24% arable land

and 15 per cent pastures), while the rest is

divided between forests (36 per cent) and other

functions.

- 43% of agricultural land, thus almost half

of it, is concentrated in the most populated

coastal plains of the west. About 34% of

agricultural land lies in river valleys and 23%

in the mountainous area.

- 20% of GDP comes from the contribution

of the agricultural sector, but the biggest

contribution of this sector is in the number of

employees, at around 50%.

- The highest challenge of this sector is

to reduce the imbalanced commercial

relationship between the import of agro-food

products (increased by 40% in 2012 compared

to 2007, while exports have increased at an

even higher rate, respectively 75% in the

respective periods).

Policies supported by the National Plan in this

regard are:

- Preservation

- Consolidation

- Modernization

• Maximizing preservation of the agricultural

land fund, through the urban development

densification policies. With the adoption of the

General National PlanShqipëria 2030”, new

constructions on agricultural land which do

not serve to the agricultural system are not

allowed.

- Well-functioning of the natural ecosystem

through the protection of green corridors

alongside the waterways (rivers).

- Reforestation of the degraded forests and

planting new areas of woodland in the free

natural areas by respecting the identity of the

relevant forest area.

• Establishing a network of successful

agricultural economic chain: production -

collection - processing - marketing, in order to

increase the economic value chain.

• Reducing the cost and increasing the quality

through investments in the following:

- Production technology for its modernization;

- Investment in the maintenance

infrastructure, irrigation channels, irrigation,

pumping stations, etc.

• Integration and cooperation with other

sectors of the economy:

- Agriculture-tourism, where the peculiarity of

the Albanian tourism sector is identified by the

agricultural products, characteristic in taste

and quality.

- Agriculture-transport, where transport

infrastructure serves to enhancing the

efficiency of the agricultural network in the

collection and marketing of agricultural

products.

- Agriculture-energy, where energy is used

in the processing of agricultural products

and is oriented towards the use of renewable

resources.

• Establishing agricultural centres/poles and

profiling the latter based on the cultivation

tradition of local crops.

• Creating brands of characteristic Albanian

agricultural products - Made in Albania.

Specializing in the cultivation and processing

of typical Albanian products such as:

- Medicinal plants,

- Fruit trees, nut trees,

- Olives and grapes,

- Characteristic vegetables of the country,

- Agricultural processed products.

107


3.4 Water System

3.4.1 National water framework and

current context

In drafting the General National Plan the

country's needs for a sustainable development

have been taken into consideration in line

with the current priorities of the country, the

Government Program for a sustainable socioeconomic

development and the European

Directives for the development priorities

aiming to achieve the expected priority results

as per the objectives stipulated in the program,

in order to provide assistance in solving the

most pressing problems of the country such as

energy and water.

In the process of drafting the GNP, it is of

relevance to recognize the water potential of

the hydrographic network of Albania, which

will include such important elements of the

Albanian nature like springs, lakes, rivers,

groundwater and the Albanian coastal space

in the Adriatic and Ionian seas. This will

serve to supply the population and industry

with eventual drinking or irrigation water,

hydropower, fishing, sailing, etc., while

respecting the standards of the European

Water Framework Directive concerning the

preservation and conservation of the natural

and living environment.

Scientific management of water and energy

has been and still remains an essential

moment with important consequences for the

welfare of present and future generations.

The European Union constantly advises that

the economic development of the country must

not be based on the intensive use of resources

in general and water resources in particular.

This should be compensated by developments

in technology, effective in maintaining the

balance of their use, considering the increased

demands of vital needs for them, and in

preserving and regenerating the latter. It

is recommended that the current relations

between economic growth, consumption of

water and energy resources and production

of waste differ significantly. Economic

development must be accompanied by

rational use of sustainable water and energy,

production of limited quantities of waste,

while preserving biodiversity, ecosystems and

avoiding environmental transformation into

wastelands.

Albania, based on its physical and

geographical conditions, possesses vast

natural resources. According to today's

references, the natural resources of water

and energy include water and renewable

energy sources (such as the hydrographic river

network, groundwater, and lake and lagoon

waters, artificial reservoirs, marine waters,

solar radiation, wind, geothermic, etc.) and

non-renewable sources (oil, gas, combustible

minerals, etc.).

Renewable natural resources are the greatest

natural wealth and the most important of

our planet, due to a special quality that is not

possessed by any other element. They are

inexhaustible and renewable.

The Albanian legislation is constantly evolving

towards the alignment of the Albanian law

with EU Water Directives. Consequently,

the Albanian Government Program for a

sustainable socio-economic development

in line with the European Directives for

development priorities aims at programming

the objectives as per the priority results

expected, in order to provide assistance in

solving the most urgent problems of the

country such as the efficient water use and

administration.

General information about the water

values and resources in Albania

Albania is a mountainous country with about

450 km of coastline and is distinguished for its

dense network and rich hydrographic system,

which is made up of rivers, springs, lakes and

the waters of the coastal area in the Adriatic

and Ionian seas.

Estuaries and deltas of 8 major rivers in

Albania, formed by more than 152 rivers and

streams are located in this space. About 65%

of their watershed lies within the Albanian

territory, a lagoon system with a total area of

108


WATER

URBAN METABOLISM ALBANIA

Water system

Flooding

Flood risk areas

(100 year return period)

Sedimentaion

Erosion

Salination

Soil salination

River system

Catchment areas

River basin

River with creeks

Water quality

Pollution

Moderate polluted river

Organic polluted river

Industrial polluted river

Polluted lake and sea

Urban discharge

Industrial discharge

Hotspote

Existing dumpsites

New dumpsites

Sewage coverage

Water supply

Fresh water

Well

Springs

Artiicial basins

Water potential

Map 3.9 Water Flow “Metabolism of Albania”, source: NTPA

109


1,500 km 2 , broad sandy and rocky beaches,

wetland series, littoral strips, the system of

sand dunes, forests, etc. All these factors,

together with the typical Mediterranean

climate make the Albanian coastal area a

large area with ecological values.

The sources of drinking water in the country

exist in the form of natural springs, rivers,

lakes and groundwater aquifers. The supply

with drinking water mainly comes from

natural springs and underground water

sources, besides the metropolitan area

of Tirana, which gets a part of the supply

from the mountainous water springs that

have been dammed to create a superficial

reservoir for water supply, which must

therefore be treated.

The Albanian territory is crossed by 65%

of the total surface of water basins of the

Balkans, about 43,900 km 2 .

Water resources in Albania are distributed

in six hydrographic water basins, which all

flow running west or northwest across the

country and have their systems from north

to south of the country as follows: Drini and

Buna rivers, Mat river, rivers of Ishem and

Erzen, Shkumbin river, Seman and Vjosa

river. It is important to note that these river

systems drain soil not only in Albania, but

also in large parts of the inhabited areas of

FYROM, Kosovo and Montenegro.

On the territory of our country, there

are also located about 250 natural lakes

of different types and sizes: tectonics,

karsts, glacial etc., and about 650 artificial

reservoirs and lakes, scattered throughout

the country.

It should be noted that uncontrolled human

activity has damaged and still continues

to damage the ecological balance of the

hydrographic network of Albania in many

aspects. Significant damage is caused

by the discharges into the waters of the

hydrographic network of Albania, of the

urban emissions and previously untreated

waste or industrial waste discharges, like

minerals, hydrocarbons etc. Inappropriate

use of inert materials from river beds

aimed for construction, or the extraction of

sand on the seashore, damaged beaches

and sand dunes, intensifying the process

of harmful marine abrasion. Even massive

and indiscriminate cutting of forests is

intensifying the process of soil erosion,

forming strong upward erosion.

Important terms and obligations of

the legal framework

“Water basin” is the area of land from

which, through a series of streams, rivers

or lakes, all surface waters flow into a river,

which flows into the sea, in a single wide

estuary, in a delta or in another river.

"Banks" are strips of land along the sea,

lakes, reservoirs, wetlands and ponds, as

well as along the flow of the rivers and

streams that, in view of the use, include at

least two areas:

a) In a width of 5m in perpendicular

direction to the ground form the upper

hillside of the natural bed in the steep coast

and 20m from the maximum line of the plots

with return probability once in 25 years,

the water on the flat banks, used for public

purposes with special provisions;

b) In a width of 100m in perpendicular

direction to the ground from the upper

hillside of the natural bed in the steep coast

and 200m from the line of the maximum

level of the plots with return probability

once in 25 years the water on the flat banks

in which every activity is determined by the

management of bodies or management of

water resources. The difference of the shore

steep slope side is 10% in perpendicular

direction to the shore.

"Water resources" are all sea waters,

sea territory, the coastline, the exclusive

economic zone, continental shelf, surface

and underground waters, together with

aquifers, and precipitation under the

jurisdiction and control of the Republic of

Albania.

110


"Geothermal Water Resources" are waters

that have temperatures consistently higher

than the average annual atmospheric

temperatures of the region, under the effect

of underground temperature, depending

on the geological structure, which may

contain sintered material and gas at a

higher amount than the surrounding water

resources, where water, vapour and natural

gas are exploded or extracted from places

where they are held through the heat from

underground, or from the dry and hot

rocks and through underground structures

modified by man.

"Mineral and thermal water resources" are

waters of cold and warm nature that are

naturally at different underground depths

in suitable geological conditions, which

are or have been brought to the surface

of the earth by one or more sources that

are determined by their mineral content or

other components, such as potable water,

curative water and similar names.

“Sanitary protection zones”

1. In order to preserve the water quality around

the source, sanitary protection areas are set

around the surface or underground source

of water used for the supply with drinking

water of the urban and rural population. The

boundaries of these zones are defined by

regulations drafted by the National Water

Council and healthcare institutions.

2. The protection areas will consist of:

a) An immediate protection area, which is

placed under the control of the agency that

deals with the production and distribution of

drinking water. This area is surrounded.

b) An area of close protection within which

it will be forbidden to build buildings, set up

industries, carry out agricultural and livestock

activities, create wells, dug channels, deposit

or discharge waste, sewerage, chemical and

toxic substances, use fertilizers and pesticides

and place cemetery.

c) A far protection area, within which the

activities foreseen in letter "b" will be subject

to special administrative authorization under

the applicable legal framework.

“Prohibited activities in coasts and beaches”

In coasts and beaches it is prohibited:

a) to change or shift the vegetation or

artificial cover;

b) to remove inert materials (sand, gravel,

stones, etc.) or turf;

c) to construct parking lots for vessels and

vehicles;

d) to create a dry place for nets;

e) to dig, drill or cause washing.

2. The water authorities are entitled by the

provisions to regulate, restrict or prohibit

the use of the beach, sea floor, dunes,

steep banks and any other surface that

is designed to protect the coast and its

maintenance, when this requires insurance

and maintenance of the beach.

“Activities on shores”

On the private and state owned lands along

the shores of rivers, streams, canals, lakes,

ponds, reservoirs, coastal lagoons and seas

there must necessarily be left:

a) An area of free land at a width from 5

to 20 meters from the shore. The width of

such surface can be further extended in

the vicinity of the mouth of the river, on

the outskirts of tight reservoirs, or if the

topographical and hydrological conditions of

rivers, lakes or reservoirs call it necessary

for securing people and property. Activities

in these areas shall be determined by the

provisions of the water authorities.

b) An area of land at a width of 100 m to 200

m, in which every activity is defined by the

water authority.

111


3.4.2 Diversity of water use

Water sources are a major resource for the

country. They are classified into surface waters

and underground waters. The relation of water

to the other sectors of economy is central to

our country. It is important to note that:

- 99% of the energy we use comes from the

exploitation of water resources,

- 14 billion m 3 of water is used by the energy

sector,

- 1.5 billion m 3 of water is used for the

agricultural sector.

The Albanian climate provides a rich amount

of fresh and clean water in the country, where

the bulk of drinking water is taken from

underground sources (80%), and only 20% of

surface waters. Less than 0.05% of the total

annual rainfall and river water is used for

industrial use and supply of water to

families per year. The irrigation system used

in agriculture is 0.25%. The only consumer

of water in Albania in a broader scale is the

energy sector. About 3% of all water flows

through large or small hydropower plants. This

amount is almost equal to the total amount of

water flowing from the rivers in our country.

The total water reserve of the surface water

and underground water is about six times this

amount. Its water system provides Albania

with an essential ecosystem device such as

electricity production, fertile agricultural land

and a landscape that is attractive for both

residents and tourists. However, the deferred

maintenance, deforestation in the north and

east (which promotes erosive activity), dams

and pollution (organic and inorganic), increase

the degradation of the lakes and rivers quality.

Mesatarja e prurjeve Average të ujërave të fresh rrjedhshëm water dhe flows rezervave and në reserves Shqipëri in Albania

në km 3 3

në vit (prurje) dhe km in km 3 per year (flows) and km 3

surface water 93.0

rivers 14.0

hydropower 14.0

oulow to the sea 41.0

irrigaon 0.5

industry 0.2

domesc use 0.6

precipitaon 426.9

evaporaon 397.0

112

Source: FAO, CIA Factbook groundwater 14.8

Burimi: FAO, CIA, Figure Fact book 3.13 Water Flow Diagram “Metabolism of Albania”, source: NTPA


a) Water in terms of potable water

supply

Most potable water in Albania comes from

underground sources (80%) and 20% from

surface waters (Floqi, 2007). Recognition,

protection and use of underground waters

are essential to urban planning.

The average amount of potable water per

capita is 12,800 m³ per year, among the

highest in Europe, while the current annual

quantity per capita of potable water supply,

is 80 m³ per year.

Underground waters can come from natural

sources of different geological formations (for

example limestone), hydro geological drillings

of wells, collective or individual wells.

The predictions of the GNP for the

concentration of population in the next

15 years and the economic activities of

national importance should go in line

with the objectives of secure supply of the

population. Below there are some maps

showing the vulnerability of the ground

waters, the water supply map and water

potential in order to highlight the ratio

among areas not provided with this service

compared to their potential, and the map of

the pollution of water resources in relation

to the concentration of population and the

measures proposed by GNP.

Approximately 70% of the country's

main cities are supplied with water

from underground wells. Also, they

are the main source for irrigation and

agriculture. Underground water is also

susceptible to contamination and in

order to preserve its quality it should be

protected. Products or substances intended

for human consumption are added to the

water used in enterprises for production,

manufacturing, handling, maintenance or

commercialization.

Surface waters can originate from

rivers, lakes or watersheds. All surface

waters presenting characteristics in

accordance to the standard of drinking

water must necessarily be subject to

appropriate treatment. Albania is also rich

in underground water resources. This is

proved by the surfacing of a large number

of sources, both small and large, in many

parts of the country (see "Hydro geological

map of Albania") such as the source of Blue

Eye, the source of Black Water (Uji i Zi), etc.,

which mark a flow of several m³/sec.

Central government authorities are

responsible for water resource management.

In this regard the recognition of the

vulnerability of ground waters and surface

waters as the primary sources for the supply of

safe drinking water is essential for the GNP.

113


Potable water 42.5 %

Irrigation water

Industry water

Construction water

Other

21 %

18.3 %

6.7 %

11.5 %

Graphic 3.3 Water Use. Elaborated by: NTPA

Total of annual production from

potable water resources

Current annual production for

drinking water supply

80m 3 /person

12,800m 3 /person

* Source: Situation in the Water Supply and Sewerages sector and Water Regulatory Entity,

Annual Report 2009_ERRU

Graphic 3.4 Capacities and utilization of potable water. Elaborated by: NTPA

114


WATER USE DIVERSITY

1 SOCIAL 2 AGRICULTURAL 3 ENERGETIC 4 ENVIRONMENT

Water as a need for

potable water supply

and sanitation.

Water in the

agricultural aspect for

land drainage and

irrigation.

Water as the main

source for energy

production.

Water in the aspect of

environment and

quality.

RESPECTIVE INSTITUTIONS

Ministry of Transport

and Infrastructure

Ministry of

Agriculture, Rural

Development and

Water Administration

Ministry of Energy

and Industry

Ministry of

Environment

Graphic 3.5 Water use diversity. Elaborated by: NTPA

115


Mati River

Ishem River

Golem

SHKODER

SHKODER

VELIPOJE

KUKES

LEZHE-

SHENGJIN

LEZHE

Velipoja bea

Sh

PESHKOPI

Gjiri i Lalzi

DURRES

TIRANE

DURRES

TIRANE

Durresi bea

KAVAJE

KAVAJE_2

ELBASAN

POGRADEC

FIER

BERAT

KORCE

KORÇE

VLORE

VLORE

Vlora be

ORIKUM

GJIROKASTËR

LEGEND

SARANDE

-Coverage with water supply service for 2014

KSAMIL

-Coverage with water supply service and

sewerage for 2014

-Coverage with water supply service and

sewerage for 2009

-Fully operational water treatment plants

-Under construction or partially operational water

treatment plants partially functioning

-Under design water treatment plants water treatment plans

LEGEND

Basins as per catchment size

-River basin of Drini_14,173 km²

-River basin of Vjosa_7,527 km²

-River basin of Seman_5,649 km²

-River basin of Shkumbin_2,445 km²

-River basin of Mat_2,441 km²

-River basin of Ishëm-Erzen_1,433 km²

-Coastal line

-River corridors

-Potable water aquifers that are being used 90-1300 l/s

Water sources with flows higher than 250l/s

-Natural resources

-Drilling wells

-Artificial basin

Map 3.10 Local units inside and outside the jurisdiction

area of Water Supply and Water Supply-Sewerages

Entities. Source: Annual report 2009 & 2014 – Water

Regulatory Entity, General Directorate of Water Supply and

Sewerages. Elaborated by: NTPA

Map 3.11 Water basins according to water catchment area and

resources size. Source: State of the Environment Report, NEA;

Water resources of Albania, Niko Pano, Elaborated by: NTPA

116


ALG1001

ALG2001

SHKODER

ALG3001

SHKODER

KUKES

ALG5002

ALG3002

KUKES

ALG2002

ALG1003

ALG1002

Velipoja beach

Shengjini beach

LEZHE

LEZHE

ALG5001

ALG3003

PESHKOPI

PESHKOPI

ALG2004

Gjiri i Lalzit beach

ALG2003

ALG1004

ALG3004

Durresi beach

DURRES

TIRANE

ALG2005

DURRES

TIRANE

ALG1005

ALG1006

Golem beach

ALG5004

ELBASAN

ALG4002

ALG4003

ELBASAN

ALG4007

ALG3005

ALG4008

ALG4004

ALG5005

ALG2006

ALG5003

ALG4009

FIER

BERAT

FIER

ALG2008 ALG4005

ALG1009

BERAT

ALG3006

ALG2007

ALG1008

Vlora beach

VLORE

KORÇE

ALG4006

ALG4007

VLORE

ALG5007

ALG2005

ALG1010

ALG5006

ALG1011

KORÇE

ALG5009

er than 250l/s

Dhermi beach

Himare beach

Borsh beach

Sarande beach

GJIROKASTËR

LEGEND

River basins quality

Good quality

Poor quality

Bad quality

Monitoring stations for lakes

Bad quality

Good quality

Satisfactory quality

Very good quality

Monitoring stations of seashores

Very good quality

Good quality

Satisfactory quality

Bad quality

Monitoring stations of rivers

Very good quality

Good quality

Satisfactory quality

Poor quality

Bad quality

ALG2010

ALG1013

ALG1014

ALG1016

ALG1015

GJIROKASTËR

ALG2011

ALG1017

ALG2012

ALG5010

ALG1018

ALG2013

ALG1012

LEGEND

Carbonate aquifer

Porous aquifer

Magmatic aquifer

Conglomerate and sandy aquifer

Other aquifers

Conglomerate and sandy aquifer

ALG4006

Aquifers codes

Water monitoring stations

River basin borders

Cities

Lakes / rivers

Map 3.12 Surface waters and basins quality. Source: Ministry

of Environment, NEA 2014. Elaborated by: NTPA

Map 3.13 Underground waters monitoring network and

aquifers typology. Source: CESMA Project 2012.

117


LEGJENDA LEGEND

Shumë i ulët Very low

I ulët

Mesatar

I lartë

Low

Moderate

High

Shumë i lartë Very high

LEGJENDA LEGEND

48 - 60 48 - 60

60 - 90 60 - 90

90 - 110 90 - 110

110 - 130110 - 130

130 - 150130 - 150

150 - 174150 - 174

Map 3.14 Evaluation of the underground waters vulnerability

118


MALESI

E MADHE

TROPOJE

FUSHE - ARREZ

HAS

SHKODER

PUKE

VAU I

DEJES

KUKES

LEZHE

MIRDITE

DIBER

KURBIN

MAT

KRUJE

KLOS

DURRES

KAMEZ

BULQIZE

VORE

SHIJAK

KAVAJE

TIRANE

ELBASAN

LIBRAZHD

RROGOZHINE

PEQIN

PRRENJAS

DIVJAKE

LUSHNJE

BELSH

CERRIK

POGRADEC

GRAMSH

PUSTEC

FIER

URA KUCOVE

VAJGURORE

RROSKOVEC

BERAT

MALIQ

PATOS

DEVOLL

MALLAKASTER

POLICAN

SKRAPAR

KORCE

VLORE

SELENICE

MEMALIAJ

KELCYRE

KOLONJE

TEPELENE

PERMET

HIMARE

GJIROKASTER

LEGEND

Areas with potable water potential

- Very high

- High

- Moderately high

- Moderately low

- Low

- Very low

- Areas not cover with water supply service

DELVINE

SARANDE

LIBOHOVE

DROPULL

FINIQ

KONISPOL

Map 3.15 Water use potentials compared to the needs for drinking water.

Source: Environment and Security – UNDP, Annual Report – Water Regulatory Entity 2014.

Elaborated by: NTPA

119


19°0'0"E

19°10'0"E

19°10'0"E

19°20'0"E

19°20'0"E

19°30'0"E

19°30'0"E

19°40'0"E

19°40'0"E

19°50'0"E

19°50'0"E

20°0'0"E

20°0'0"E

20°10'0"E

20°10'0"E

20°20'0"E

20°20'0"E

20°30'0"E

20°30'0"E

20°40'0"E

20°40'0"E

20°50'0"E

20°50'0"E

21°0'0"E

21°0'0"E

21°10'0"E

21°10'0"E

42°50'0"N

KOLASHIN

BERANE

POZAJE

42°50'0"N

ANDRIJEVICA

42°40'0"N

PEJE

PRISHTINE

42°40'0"N

PLAV

VERMOSH

PODGORICE

VALBONE

THETH

GJAKOVE

42°20'0"N

BUJAN

42°10'0"N

Liqeni

i

SHKODRËS

KOPLIK

FIERZE

PRIZREN

42°10'0"N

SHKODER

42°0'0"N

QAFE - MAL

KUKES

TETOVE

ULQIN

VELIPOJE

GJEGJAN

SHISHTAVEC

41°50'0"N

Lumi Buna

SHENGJIN

LURE

KALAJA E DODES

41°50'0"N

Lumi Drini i Vjetër

KOLSH

RUBIK

DIBER

GOSTIVAR

LEZHE

41°40'0"N

Lumi Mat

LAÇ

ULEZ

MELAN

41°40'0"N

Lumi Ishëm

FUSHE KUQE

BURREL

FUSHE BULQIZE

DIBER

41°30'0"N

ISHËM

ZERQAN

41°30'0"N

Lumi Erzen

SUKTH

KATUND I RI

MARTANESH

41°20'0"N

GOLEM

DURRES

NDROQ

TIRANE

KAVAJE

PEZE BERZHITE

PEZE

PETRELE

SHENGJERGJ

STEBLEVE

41°20'0"N

41°10'0"N

SYNEJ

KAVAJE_2

BALDUSHK

KRRABE

STRUGE

OHRID

41°10'0"N

KRYEVIDH

ELBASAN

41°0'0"N

Lumi Shkumbin

GJINAR

Liqeni i OHRIT

TREGAN

KLOS

UDENISHT

Liqeni

i

PRESPËS

41°0'0"N

40°50'0"N

Lumi Seman

TOPOJË

BERAT

KODOVJAT

POGRADEC

40°50'0"N

QENDËR

40°40'0"N

Lumi Vjosë

DERMENAS

FIER

KUMAN

KORCE

40°40'0"N

ÇAKRAN

VOSKOPOJË

VLORE

BALLSH

BOGOVË

LEGEND

40°30'0"N

SELENICE

40°30'0"N

Coastal area of national importance

KASTORIA

Tourist line as per the Coastal CSIP

ORIKUM

SEVASTËR

FRASHËR

Blue line for the water corridors according to GNP

PERMET

Water outflow and flooding areas

KURVELESH

ZAGORIE

PETRAN

Clean rivers

ANTIGONË

LESKOVIK

Polluted rivers

LUKOVË

Highly harmful industrial areas

GJIROKASTER

KONICA

Wastewater treatment plants

SARANDE

Chemical pollution

Urban pollution

Dumpsites locations

KSAMIL

Locations of urban and industrial pollution

Coastal erosion

XARRË

IOANNINA

Urbanisation

39°40'0"N

42°0'0"N

42°20'0"N

42°30'0"N

40°20'0"N

40°20'0"N

40°10'0"N

40°10'0"N

40°0'0"N

40°0'0"N

39°50'0"N

42°30'0"N

39°50'0"N

0 5 10 20 30 40

Km

39°40'0"N

Surface water such as rivers, lakes, reservoirs

FILIATES

Specialized local center

Map 3.16 Risks of water flood, erosion and river pollution

120


) Water in agricultural terms for

drainage and irrigation of land

Water for the irrigation of agricultural

lands is taken from 626 reservoirs with

a volume of 562 milion m³. Referring to

the documents published by MARDWA 36

it appears that currently 13 drainage

boards are working, which cover the entire

territory of the country, according to the

regions administrative boundaries. The

infrastructure of irrigation, drainage and

flood protection is designed to irrigate about

420,000 ha of agricultural land (360,000 ha

potentially irrigable), ensuring 280,000 ha

drainage and reducing flood risk from river

and sea. The area mostly threatened by

flooding is the Western Lowland. In order

to drain an area of 75,000 ha, 28 pumping

stations/waterworks need to operate.

The main objectives are defined as:

• Fulfilling sustainable water needs,

through rehabilitation and modernization of

irrigation systems,

• Sustainable management of irrigation

systems through the separation of powers

and responsibilities for the operation,

maintenance and rehabilitation of irrigation

infrastructure between the central

government, administrative units and water

use entities,

• Ensuring priority drainage for the

agricultural area of the Western Lowland

through the rehabilitation and improvement

of existing infrastructure and increasing of

pumping stations capacity,

• Reducing the risk of river and sea flooding,

through redesigning of protective structures

and re-considering new urban development

near rivers and their estuaries.

County

Arable land

Water used for irrigation

m3/ha/year (2010)

Potencial

Currently

Irrigated land

(%)

Berat 52908

13150

10180

19.2

Dibra

41056

22945

15996

39.0

Durres

40568

19049

12731

31.4

Elbasan

72872

31768

21103

29.0

Fier

121961

77142

46451

38.1

Gjirokastra

45111

21057

10604

23.5

Korça

90909

33944

21874

24.1

Kukes

25292

10211

7768

30.7

Lezha

34736

18914

9168

26.4

Shkodra

50625

34611

16930

33.4

Tirana

56609

14657

1140

19.7

Vlora

62873

34004

20600

32.8

Table 3.3 Drainage and irrigation of lands as per counties. Source MARDWA

36

http://www.bujqesia.gov.al/al/programi/ujitja-dhe-kullimi

121


c) Water as an energy source

Water resources of our country, apart from

the recreational and tourist aspect, are very

important for the energetic and geo energetic

development of the country. 99% of the

electricity we use comes from the exploitation

of water resources. Geo energy also comprises

a potential in this regard.

The heat of the layers in deep soil and thermal

water of wells are two sources of this energy

use. The flow of energy in the western regions

of Albania has a density of 40MW/m 2 , while in

the north-eastern and south-eastern regions

the density reaches to 60mW/m 2 .

It is important to emphasize the preservation

of surface water resources, mainly of the

rivers from use for hydropower purposes.

Although this is a form of obtaining electricity

from a renewable source, there is no proper

study showing the extent of the impact of this

over-exploitation on the natural ecosystem

surrounding river valleys or the coastline

where they are deposited.

Requirements for a reliable supply of

residential areas are closely connected to

the technical requirements of water supply

infrastructure. Below there are some legal

criteria to be taken into account when drawing

up territorial plans.

Technical and sanitary requirements for the

water supply network

- External lines

The dimensioning of external lines, water

distribution network and the ways of

implementation of works in these facilities are

carried out under the technical conditions of

the design and implementation determined

by the Ministry of Environment and Ministry

of Health (Instruction No. 203/1995, Law No.

9635/2006).

The track of the water lines should avoid

passing through areas of the cemetery, waste

disposal sites, landfill of animal waste, various

industrial discharge areas etc. (Law No.

8605/2000). In case of mandatory crossing in

these areas, the distance should be not less

than 30 m, accompanied by other protective

enforced measures such as: reinforced

isolation with a bitumen layer and cardboard

tarpaulin or glass cloth, pipeline lining,

concreting of pipeline, bringing it into a trestle

(overhead) with insulation measures, etc.

(Ainsworth, 2004).

While passing through water obstacles,

rivers or streams, measures should be

taken in case of failure to supply with water

the inhabited centres. In case of supply of

residential areas only from one water source

when the route passes in the above-mentioned

areas (DCM No. 145/1998) the line should be

duplicated. Protective measures should be of

a constructive character, as passing through

gabion baskets, overhead traversing above

pylons, etc. The control manholes for the

external lines should be equipped with metal

lids. Before working inside the manhole, the

lid should be left open about 30 minutes to

complete its full ventilation (SDWA, 2011).

To protect metal pipes from corrosion, they

get hydro insulated before being placed in

the channel. For the pipelines which pass

over land (outside in the air), they are also

thermo insulated. In case of underpasses

of the irrigation or drainage channels, the

upper part of the pipe shall be 0.3 m from the

bottom of the channel (Law no. 8605/2000)

and reinforcing measures are also taken

through concreting or lining. Any construction

on the water supply lines is strictly prohibited.

Connection and supply with drinking water for

any type of building shall be made with the

permission of the water supply management

entity and the State Sanitary Inspectorate.

- Internal network

The shape of the internal water supply

network may be of the loop, branched typology

or combined type (Ainsworth, 2004). The

connection of the internal network of domestic

water supply to the main water supply network

should be through a control or manoeuvring

manhole (access chamber). At these points,

return valves are needed too.

During the construction of the water supply

network, pipelines should be above those

of sewerages. It is recommended to apply

the following requirements (SDWA, 2011;

122


EPA, 2011; Instruction no. 203/1995, Law no.

9635/2006).

- When the pipelines are in parallel, the

drinking water pipeline is recommended to be

0.5 m above the sewerages pipeline and the

distance between them side to side not less

than 1.5 m for water supply pipelines with a

diameter up to 200 mm, and not less than 3 m

for pipelines with a diameter over 200 mm;

- When pipelines are intersected, then that of

the drinking water is recommended to be over

0.5 m above the sewerages pipeline;

- In exceptional cases and with the approval

of the SSI other placements can be allowed,

and before covering the pipelines with soil,

it is recommended to conduct the hydraulic

testing of the network to check the quality of

the works in the presence of state sanitary

inspector.

- Water tanks

Water tanks are designed and constructed

to offset the amount of water at the time of

maximum consumption and pressure in the

water network. Calculation of their volume is

made on the basis of the technical conditions

of design and implementation approved by the

Council of Ministers (SDWA, 2011; EPA, 2011;

Instruction no. 203/1995, Law no. 9635/2006).

- Water tanks are intended to be placed on the

dominant points of the residential centre to

provide the necessary pressure in the upper

floors of the furthest houses;

- The number of water tanks and sections that

can work independently shall be not less than

two;

- The water tank is recommended to be

equipped with a manoeuvre chamber;

- The water tanks should be equipped with lids

that are firmly sealed with locks and interlocks

in order to prevent atmospheric waters;

- Tanks are equipped with “U” ventilation tubes

at a height of 2 m from the ground surface and

the lower wing shall be 0.5 m in order to avoid

the penetration of atmospheric waters, dust

and insects. To eliminate the entry of animals,

a wire mesh is installed on the pipeline with

holes of a diameter not more than 0.85 mm;

- The tanks are equipped with the inlet, outlet,

discharge, overflow and fire pipeline. The

overflow pipeline is placed leaning downwards

and is equipped with a syphon to avoid access

of various animals;

- Hydraulic testing is conducted before the

tank is covered by soil in order to check its

possible leaks and to repair them;

- Materials used to build the tanks can be

different like stone, reinforced concrete, metal

(stainless steel). The type of materials used

to build tanks must not allow water quality to

change;

- The places where the pumps are placed must

have sufficient natural lightning 1: 7-1: 8 (DCM

no. 145, dated 26/02/1998). The floor should be

insulated from underground waters.

3.4.3 The impact of climate changes on

the water system

The annual average rainfall is 1,485 mm, but

it is distributed unevenly in time and space:

the hillside has an average of 800 mm of

rainfall per year, while in the coastal territories

and mountainous regions rain falls regularly

at an average of 2,000 mm per year. 80% of

the rain falls during winter months, thus

flooding the agricultural land, while the annual

and seasonal crops of summer depend on

irrigation. According to the data, 2/3 of water

from water resources is lost during transport

and distribution, because infrastructure is

obsolete and poorly maintained. Efforts to

rehabilitate and rebuild the irrigation systems

have been on-going since 1990. In 2007, about

340,000 hectares of agricultural land had

irrigation infrastructure and approximately twothirds

was operational. 37

About 78-80% of families nationwide have

access to potable water from the water

supply line, but the service is intermittent

and of poor water quality. The average urban

families have access to water only 6 to 13 hours

a day. In rural areas, the use tap water is of

scarce quality and many families open their

wells. In the early 2000s, 73% of such wells

were contaminated by bacteria. Gastrointestinal

diseases caused by contaminated water are

already known. 38 Albania has over 600 dams of

reservoirs for irrigation and energy production.

37

According to the World Bank 2003a; World Bank 2007a; Sallaku et al 2003; Beddies et al 2004; 2010a World Bank

38

According to the World Bank 2003a; World Bank 2007a; Sallaku et al 2003; Beddies et al 2004; 2010a World Bank

123


Ninety per cent of the country's electricity is

supplied by hydropower and the demand has

exceeded the supply since 1998. The country

has numerous aquifers, but many of them are

affected by salt water or pollution.

Albania has very limited facilities for handling

sewerage waters, therefore, surface and

underground waters are often polluted by

urban, industrial and agricultural waste. 39

Patterns of change are broadly similar to the

change of annual precipitations, which means

increased in high geographical areas and

reduced in low areas. But the overall increase

in the evaporation means that a reduction in

surface streams is possible. The rainfall regime

over Drini catchment is characterized by snow

during winter in the northern and eastern part

and rainfalls in its western part.

For the catchment area of the majority of river

branches (Valbona, Shala, etc.), a large part

of the annual flow is formed by the melting of

snow in spring. An increase in temperature

means that there are more precipitations in the

form of rainfall and therefore the surface flows

during winter are increased and the melting

of snow in spring is reduced. An increase in

temperatures also increases the evaporation

and reduces the amount of water stored in

reservoirs during the winter.

Potential impacts of climate changes on the

water sector are:

• Increase in the long-term of the annual

average temperature of air and reduction

of seasonal and annual average rainfall

(combined with higher demand for evaporation)

will reduce at a longer term the annual and

seasonal surface flows in the catchment of

Drini.

• There will be no major changes to winter

time horizon up to 2100, about a maximum of

7%. Flooding will continue to occur during this

season and the period of spring floods will be

shifted to the winter season.

• High temperatures will relocate the

permanent snow limit at a higher level;

seasonal snowfall patterns are likely to change

starting later and ending earlier. Consequently,

the flows from the melting of snow in the

spring are expected to decrease significantly.

The maximum reduction is 30% for 2050 and

66% up to 2100. This should be taken into

consideration by the hydropower industry.

• In general the river flood risk will increase,

the period of the greatest risk will move from

spring to winter. Effects of recharging ground

waters (a major source for catchments) can

rise from climate change.

• Increasing sea levels can cause some

direct effects, including overflow of water

and displacement of wetlands and lowlands,

coastal erosion, increased damage from

storms and floods, increased salinity in

estuaries and coastal aquifers, and increased

coastal ground waters.

• Underground water supply will be affected

by the reduction of water filtration due to the

reduction of precipitation and river flows, and

the loss of soil moisture due to increased

evaporation. Reduction of underground water

supply in combination with the increased

salinity of ground waters can cause lack of

drinking water of adequate quality.

Risks from climate changes

Risks from climate changes

- The main factors affecting climate change

are: deforestation and reduced vegetation

cover, which allow:

- Changes in microclimates,

- Increase of erosion, which affects the

vegetation cover allowing the permeability of

soil layers above aquifers, as well as floods.

- Another factor that influences climate change

is the change in the rainfall regime. All these

factors together affect water quality.

Other factors that affect climate change are:

- Reduction and damage of vegetation cover,

- Floods,

- Risks caused by aquifers,

- Permeability by rivers,

- Erosion,

- Changes in temperature,

39

Sallaku etc. 2003; World Bank 2006a, Zdruli and Lushaj 2001; 2010a World Bank

124


99%

89%

Water supply coverage

Sanitation coverage

21.5

h/d

30%

Water supply duration (hours/day)

Non -revenue water reduction

Graphic 3.6 Strategic objectives for 2030; Source: Water Supply and Sewerages Services Sectorial

Strategy 2011-2017; Elaborated by NTPA

Përfundime

Strategjitë identifikojnë disa probleme kryesore në sektorin e furnizimit me

Conclusion

ujë dhe kanalizimeve. Këtu mund të përmendet fakti se edhe pse një ndër

vendet me potencial me të lartë ujor në rajon, furnizimi me ujë në Shqipëri

The strategies

është i ulët në

identify

krahasim

some

me

key

vendet

problems

e tjera evropiane,

in the sector

veçanërisht

of water

në zonat

supply and

sanitation. rurale. Furnizimi Here we me can ujë mention ka ndërprerje the fact ose that nuk although ka presion one të qëndrueshëm

of the countries

with në high rrjet, water një pjesë potential e madhe in the e ujit region, mbetet the e pa water faturuar supply që vjen in nga Albania mungesa is low e

compared ujë matësave, to other menaxhimit European të countries, dobët dhe efikasitetit particularly të ulët in rural të përdorimit areas. të Water

supply burimeve has interruptions njerëzore si dhe or mungesa no sustained e dezinfektimit pressure të on ujit, the e cila network, sjell rreziqe a large part

potenciale për shëndetin e popullatës.

of the water remains unbilled from lack of water metering, poor management

Në objektivat e strategjive, vihet re se investimet në sektorin e ujit nuk janë

and low

të orientuara

efficiency

drejt

of the

zonave

use


of

rritje

human

dhe zonave

resources

me potencial

and lack

për

of

zhvillimin

disinfection

e

water,

which turizmit. brings potential risks to public health.

Strategy Plani objectives, i Përgjithshëm noted Kombëtar, that investments u vjen në ndihmë in the këtyre water strategjive sector nëpërmjet

parashikimeve expanding areas të përqendrimeve and areas with të popullsisë tourism development në 15 vitet e ardhshëm potential. në

are not oriented

towards

The General polet ekonomike National kryesore Plan, assists dhe në qendrat these urbane strategies sipas through hierarkizimit. the prediction of

Studimi mbi nevojat kombëtare do të shërbejë për të përcaktuar sasinë e

concentrations of population in the next 15 years in the major economic poles

nevojave për investime kapitale në sektor.

and in urban centers by hierarchy.

The study of national needs will serve to determine the amount of capital

investment needed in this sector.

125


- Damage of the aquifer layers,

- Exploitation of water resources by

hydropower,

- Illegal logging and deforestation.

The effects become visible in the decline of

water quality and loss of biodiversity.

3.4.4 GNP recommendations on the

water system

The GNP recommendations are in line with

the problems observed by the sectorial

strategic documents, the metabolic analyses

of the system and the supporting studies

conducted over the years. These have been

classified as follows:

• Recommendations regarding

management issues

- Rational use of water while maintaining

the balance of aquifers abstraction/

recharge;

- Control of illegal activities;

- Development of clear policies that affect

the sector's development in the water

system;

- Coordination among institutions at local,

regional and central level;

- Improvements in the legal framework

regarding monitoring.

• Recommendations regarding issues with

the amount of waters

This is related to the promotion of

sustainable use of water resources,

therefore the following are required:

- Investments in capacity-building and

know-how on water resources and in

particular on the geological layers and

aquifers limits;

- Sustainable exploitation of underground

waters, including uncontrolled drilling;

- Maintaining catchments with rain

precipitations for agricultural use.

• Recommendations regarding pollution

issues

Human activities and natural resources

together are the leading cause of ground

water pollution, which is associated with

long-term negative effects on ground water.

Regardless of how small these pollution

sources are, due to the fact that the removal

of contaminants from ground water is

difficult, purifying water has high costs.

Despite the distance, a potential source of

contamination should not be placed above

the well height. We should note that the

method of construction of a well and its

placement can be the premise that leads

to the nitrate pollution, but they are not the

only cause of pollution.

• The recommendations refer to

pollution from various sources which

have great impact on the quality of water

resources. The main causes of pollution

have been identified as: mismanagement

of wastewater treatment infrastructure,

restricted sanitary areas, unstable

agricultural practices and illegal drillings.

Thus, sectorial plans, at regional and local

level, should reflect concrete measures that

protect the water system from:

- Pollution from sewerage,

- Pollution from agricultural activities,

- Pollution from mining,

- Pollution from surface areas and crossborder

waters with other countries,

- Pollution from urban waste collections,

- Pollution from illegal activities,

- Damage of river banks,

- Illegal drillings,

- Industrial zones in cross-border countries,

- Use of pesticides and fertilizers,

- Pollution from landfills,

- Limited (small) protection areas,

- Bad or no treatment of wastewater from

urban, industrial and agricultural uses,

- Intensive exploitation of river gravel,

- Urban waste dumpsites,

- Considerable agricultural and industrial

activities.

Proposals

Policies of urban densification and natural

corridors along the river valleys are the

primary policies that the General National

Plan brings to the support of this system.

To protect the Water System, GNP has

established:

126


• the Blue line which aims at:

- Protecting the coastal line from prohibited

uses as defined by the sectorial legislation

on the protection of water resources;

- Monitoring the activities for economic

exploitation in the area of the coastal band;

- Regenerating the natural corridors that

follow the flow of the river streams.

• To recognize and protect the values of

the natural landscape of the territory that

extends from the shoreline to the crest of

the first hilly/mountain range.

• To take under protection the basin of

Vjosa 40 . Vjosa differs from all other rivers

in the Balkans for its high degree of water

flow, geological formations and the diversity

of the landscape along the valley. The

protection will be accomplished through

a process of integrated management of

water resources, aiming to define ecological

areas to be declared under protection,

harmoniously pursuing the following

principles:

1. Social Equality: to ensure equal access

for all users (especially the marginalized

groups and poor users) to the necessary

quantity and quality of water, to meet their

needs and welfare;

2. Economic Efficiency: to bring benefits to a

greater number of users;

3. Ecological Sustainability: to ensure that

the water ecosystems are considered as

separate users and their allocation is done

to support their natural function.

Furthermore, we highlight the

recommendation of the European

Parliament (P8_TA-PROV (2016) 0134 2015

Report on Albania).

40

See the recommendation of the European Parliament (P8_TA-PROV (2016) 0134 2015 Report on Albania) that “…The

Government of Albania shall control the development of hydropower plants in environmentally sensitive areas, such as the

area around Vjosa river and protected areas, in order to preserve the integrity of the existing national parks; recommends

to improve the quality of the environmental impact assessment, to take into consideration the EU standards, defined in

the “Birds and Habitats Directive” and “Water Framework Directive”; encourages the Government of Albania to increase

traNTPArency through public participation and consultation process during project drafting”.

127


Water System Pollutants

1. Agricultural Potential

Polluters

Wrong applications of pesticides,

fungicides and fertilizers

Leakages from storage containers

Excessive animal feed

Livestock use

2. The management of

Polluting Waste

Septic systems location

3. Agricultural Potential

Polluters

Old landfills

Unfenced landfills

Storm water

Septic tanks

Fuel storage systems

Farms, lawns, motor engines

and swimming-pools chemicals

Urban wastes

Abandoned wells

Table 3.4 Sources of the water system pollution

128


4. Industrial Potential

Polluters

Chemicals

Oil

Cleaning devices

Machineries

Metals

Electronic products

Bitumen

Mining (superficial and

underground)

Pipelines

Storage tanks (overhead and

underground)

5. Commercial Potential

Polluters

Car services

Oil

Gas stations

Road maintenance warehouses

Freezing equipment

Boatyards, railway machineries

Construction sites, airports

Dry cleaning

Pipelines

Medical facilities, research labs

Photo processing, printers

Operational and abandoned

wells (e.g. gas, oil, water supply,

injections, monitoring and

exploration)

Walls dividing lagoons with

scum

Applications in river soils

129


I. Pressures on water quantity

Fresh water renewable resources

Fresh water renewable resources

during drought periods

Total flow of surface and underground waters vs.

total quantity of rain waters

Water use

Ratio between water quantity used for various purposes

vs. fresh water resources

Demand for water use

Ratio between underground waters used for various purposes

vs. total quantity of underground waters

Water quantity per capita

Ratio between the demand for water quantity for various purposes

vs. total quantity of water resources

Water used by hydropower plants

Ratio between drinking water quantity vs. 1-total quantity of

water resources quantity 2-underground waters quantity

Underground water use

Ratio of annual domestic water quantity per capita

Demand for potable water

Ratio between water quantity used for irrigation purposes

vs. total quantity of water resources

Demand and water quantity

for irrigation

Ratio between water quantity used from hydropower plants

vs. total quantity of water resources

Reduction of underground waters

Reduction of underground waters due to over abstraction

Losses

Ratio between water quantity that is lost (not from use) in the system

due to various reasons vs. registered quantity of water resources

Table 3.5 Measurement of indicators for the water system

130


II. Pressures on water quality

Quality of potable water

This is tested by means of the quantity of samples

to test patable water

Industrial waste waters

Quantity of untreated industrial waste water flow vs. waste water

flow quantity (generated in a specific area)

Domestic waste waters

Quantity of waste water from domestic use vs. domestic waste

waters in a specific area

Specific pollutions

The quantity of a pollutant vs. the maximum level allowed for

the same component in potable water

Use of fertilizers on

agricultural lands

The quantity of organic fertilizers or minerals used per unit

of the agricultural land

Use of pesticides

The quantity of pesticides used per unit of the agricultural land

Landfills

Reuse of Water

Ratio between recycled waters reuse vs. the quantity

of waste water flows

Permeability of sea water

in the coastal aquifers

The quantity of water flows (brackish salty or under the direct

threat of permeability vs. total quantity of fresh waters)

Protection of habitats

The total amount of protected areas vs. the total area of a zone

Water demand depending

from ecosystems

The quantity of the demand for water along the rivers

Annual water demand for endemic

and threatened species

Endemic and threatened species

131


19°0'0"E

19°10'0"E

19°10'0"E

19°20'0"E

19°20'0"E

19°30'0"E

19°30'0"E

19°40'0"E

19°40'0"E

19°50'0"E

19°50'0"E

20°0'0"E

20°0'0"E

20°10'0"E

20°10'0"E

20°20'0"E

20°20'0"E

20°30'0"E

20°30'0"E

20°40'0"E

20°40'0"E

20°50'0"E

20°50'0"E

21°0'0"E

21°0'0"E

21°10'0"E

21°10'0"E

42°50'0"N

KOLASHIN

BERANE

POZAJE

42°50'0"N

ANDRIJEVICA

42°40'0"N

PEJE

PRISHTINE

42°40'0"N

VERMOSH

Vermosh-

Guci

PLAV

Valbone

42°20'0"N

42°30'0"N

E762

PODGORICE

Hani i

Hotit

RAZEM

Bajze

TAMARE

BOGE

JEZERCE

THETH VALBONE

TROPOJE

NIKAJ-MERTUR

Qafe Morine

Zhub

GJAKOVE

E851

42°30'0"N

42°20'0"N

E762

FIERZE

42°10'0"N

42°0'0"N

BAR

Landscape

coastal road

E851

ULQIN

KOPLIK

Liqeni

i

SHKODRËS

Zogaj

Muriqan

E851

MALESI

E MADHE

Itinerari

Grile

SHKODER

KOMAN

Mjede

VAU

I DEJES

PUKE

Krume

FUSHE-ARREZ

Morine-

Vermice

HAS

E851

Maja e

Pashtrikut

KUKES

Shishtavec

PRIZREN

TETOVE

42°10'0"N

42°0'0"N

41°50'0"N

Puljaj

Lumi Buna

VELIPOJE

E762

Baqel

LEZHE

Rubik

E851

MIRDITE

Rreshen

E851

Bjeshka

e Oroshit

Korab

GOSTIVAR

41°50'0"N

Lumi Drini i Vjetër

Skuraj

Milot

Lure

DIBER

41°40'0"N

Lumi Mat

Lumi Ishëm

Kepi i

Rodonit

Ulez

Kune-

KURBIN

Vain

Lac

E762 Gjorm MAT

Mamurras

KRUJE

Spac

Burrel

Luzni-Bulac

Blate

DIBER

Via Skanderbeg

41°40'0"N

41°0'0"N

41°10'0"N

41°20'0"N

41°30'0"N

Via Egnatia

Ishem

Fabrika e Cimentos

Mali i Dajtit

Vicisht

Budull Fushe Kruje

BULQIZE

Lumi Erzen

Gjiri i

KLOS

Lalzit VORE

KAMEZ

E762

Sukth

Shkozet

Mali me Gropa

Kashar

Martanesh

SHIJAK

Shengjergj

DURRES

Stebleve

Yzberisht

Plazh

Shebenike-

Peze

Kuturman-

Golem TIRANE

Jabllanice

Qafa e Bushit

KAVAJE

Lumi Shkumbin

Kalaja

e Turres

E853

RROGOZHINE

DIVJAKE

Karavasta

Lekaj

Dushk

Petrele

E852

Bishqethem

PEQIN

LUSHNJE

Paper

BELSH

Kraste

ELBASAN

Vidhas

CERRIK

Mirake

Gjinar

Dardhe-Xhyre

LIBRAZHD

STRUGE

E852

Xhyre

PRRENJAS

Qukes

E852

E86

Lin

E86

Memlisht

E852

OHRID

Qafe Thane

Liqeni i OHRIT

Liqeni

i

PRESPËS

Via Egnatia

41°0'0"N

41°10'0"N

41°20'0"N

41°30'0"N

Gradisht

40°10'0"N

40°20'0"N

40°30'0"N

40°40'0"N

40°50'0"N

Via Appia

Lumi Vjosë

Sazan

Lumi Seman

Pishe-

Poro

Levan

Novosele

Narte

Libofshe

Grykederdhja

Seman

Karaburun

Kraps

E853

E853

FIER

SELENICE

VLORE

Kote

ORIKUM

Llogara

URA

VAJGURORE

RROSKOVEC

PATOS

MALLAKASTER

Kasnice

Ballsh

Rafineri

E853

Kuc

HIMARE

Corrush

Izvor

KUCOVE

TEPELENE

Progonate

Ftere

Borsh

Molisht

BERAT

POLICAN

Ballaban

MEMALIAJ

Mali i

Tomorrit

Bogove

GRAMSH

KELCYRE

SKRAPAR

Piskove

Ura e

Leklit

Manastiri i PERMET

E853

Nivanit

Parku

Natyror

Petran

Zheji

Kardhiq

Rezervati

Rrezome

Prishte

Odrican

GJIROKASTER

Hotove-

Dangelli

LIBOHOVE

Guri i Kuq

Voskopoje

MALIQ

Vithkuq

KOLONJE

Piskal-

Shqeri

Germenj-

Shelegur

E86

KORCE

Borove

Tre Urat

Tushemisht

POGRADEC

PUSTEC

Rezervati

Kangonji

E86

Nikolice

Bredhi i

Drenoves

DEVOLL

Morrava

Stenje

Bilisht

Kapshtice

KASTORIA

E86

40°10'0"N

40°20'0"N

40°30'0"N

40°40'0"N

40°50'0"N

LEGEND

Rrimary road

Planned/under construction primary road

Primary roads to be reinforced / proposed

Secondary roads

Planned/under construction secondary roads

Secondary roads to be strengthened / proposed

Tertiary roads

Planned/under construction tertiary roads

Proposed/under construction tertiary roads

Railway infrastructure

Proposed railway infrastructure

E851 E86 E853 E852 E762

Trans-European Road Network

Coastal Landscape Road

Road with a landscape to be recovered

Sailing itinerary

Border point Proposed border point

Symbols for railway infrastructure

40°0'0"N

DELVINE

Jorgucat

KONICA

40°0'0"N

Main station

Passengers station

Station only for goods

39°50'0"N

SARANDE

Saranda port

Mesopotam

FINIQ

E853

Kakavije

DROPULL

E853

39°50'0"N

International hub

National hub

Airport

Marina

Urbanization

Priority and natural protected area

Butrint

KONISPOL

IOANNINA

Proposed airport

Airfields

National Importance Area

Municipal center

39°40'0"N

0 5 10 20 30 40

Km

Qafe Bote

FILIATES

Landscape coastal road

39°40'0"N

Main port

Energy port

Protected natural tourist area

Waterfront tourist area

Map 3.17 Intergrated transport infrastructure, GNP 2030

132


3.5 Infrastructure System

The relevance of the infrastructure system

in carrying out the vision of GNP “Shqipëria

2030”, converting Albania into an energy hub

for the region and into an interconnection

centre for the Eastern Europe, is highlighted

since the very first chapter of the GNP.

Territorial integration of the country and

the balanced distribution of flows within the

territory depend on increasing the capacity

of transport of people, goods, energy and

information, as well as improving time

efficiency, cost reduction and bridging

distances.

The physical infrastructure of roads, public

transport, energy and communication are of

special relevance to the GNP, as they directly

affect the establishment, expansion and timely

connection of a particular development.

Other economic and social infrastructures

such as water supply – sewerage system,

treatment of waste water, transportation,

disposal and treatment of waste, schools,

hospitals, are required to be established

in accordance with the concentration of

population and meet the requirements for

appropriate expectations if we aim a balanced

territorial development of the country. Waste

management should be treated with priority,

especially the efficiency, and low-cost and

competitive management, if it is to develop the

industrial and processing sector in the country.

The main feature of countries with successful

economies is that they have an integrated,

well developed infrastructure, which supports

mobility. Public and private transport, energy

and communication networks, convergence

of this network at strategic points promote

sustainable development.

The general objective of the General National

Plan is to support the development of an

integrated network of transport, energy and

communications, while different management

and governing authorities sectors must predict

their further development in an integrated

manner. Therefore, in the future when it comes

to new transport, energy or communication

corridors, they must be designed under a

common view, in a network that does not

fragment the territory, but is integrated with

the necessary capacity to respond to the

requests for development up to and beyond

2030.

In any case these development frameworks

should be easily adaptable to future

developments, such as the demographic

changes or other national needs. For instance,

reserving or storing existing abandoned

airfield infrastructures for potential future

uses.

Because such investments are associated

with special/high economic needs, which often

determine the level of progress in this sector, a

strategic planning and coordination of private

and public sectors is necessary.

The network of physical infrastructure consists

of the following key elements:

• transport - including public, rail, air and sea

transport,

• energy - including electricity, oil, gas,

mineral resources,

• communication - including

telecommunications network, optic fibres, etc.

3.5.1 Transport Infrastructure System

To support a balanced regional development

the national transport should be developed:

• On the basis of transverse corridors east

- west, connecting the eastern part of the

country to the main ports and corridors that

allow longitudinal north – south permeability

of the territory.

• The establishment of an integrated network

of public transport infrastructure, supported

by multimodal terminals connecting the main

urban centres.

• Capacity building in support of new and

innovative technology in the transport sector,

which enables the reduction of energy demand

and reduction of CO 2

emissions in the air in

this sector.

133


• Strengthen international connecting

corridors access across the country by

strengthening the interconnection and

exchange nodes in the network of national

transport and international connections,

ports, airports, customs border crossing

points.

Regional and local plans and the use of land

in these areas must take into consideration

this development of the transport network

and support it with the development of the

secondary and tertiary network.

a) Road transport corridors

Albania's future transportation can be

classified into:

• transversal strategic corridors

• longitudinal strategic corridors

It is important to note that some of these

corridors are perceived as interconnecting

strategic lines and that their detailed projects

and programs will be followed by sectorial

strategies.

Transversal Strategic Corridors

In the northern part:

- “The Nation’s Road”, a completed axis,

which needs to be improved with terminals

to strengthen the connections of people and

goods in public transport, Kosovo - Tirana,

Kosovo - Durres, Kosovo - Shkodra - Lezha

(port of Shengjin, Velipoja beach).

In the central part:

- "Arbri Road", an axis under construction

which cuts by 100 km the distance from Dibra

- FYROM to Tirana and the port of Durres.

- Central VIII Corridor - This corridor,

although it has not received the right attention

in terms of policy to its full construction,

constitutes one of the most important and

strategic links of our country of regional

and international interest; it represents the

shortest link between the Black Sea and the

Adriatic Sea (Mediterranean). The key point

in this corridor will constitute in empowering

the port of Durres. This corridor will be

strengthened not only by the revitalization of

the existing railway line and its improvement,

but also by the road construction of the "Via

Egnatia", as a landscape road of historical and

cultural heritage value.

In the southern part:

- The potential interconnection between Korça

- port of Vlora. There are good opportunities to

be developed, especially with the construction

of TAP pipeline. Therefore a faster access

to the sea would be provided to one of the

primary centres and also encourage and

increase the incoming capacity of the port

of Vlora not only from the central part of the

country but from the eastern and southern

part as well.

Supportive Transversal Axis

- Shkodra-Vau i Dejes-Kukes

- Durres-Kruja-Dibra

- Berat-Gramsh-Pogradec

- Himara-Kelcyra-Permet–Kakavija

- Sarada–Kakavija

Longitudinal Strategic Corridors

The North-South and Adriatic-Ionian

highways ensure a fast permeability of the

territory and the connection with the countries

of the Western Balkans and Eastern Europe.

These corridors will be strengthened by the

revitalization and improvement of the existing

railway line.

Coastal landscape road [Velipoja - Shengjin

- Patok - Durres - Divjaka - Seman - Vlora -

Dhermi - Saranda - Butrint], one of the most

strategic ties with regards to strengthening

the economy of the country's coastal

tourism and agrotourism. The road will be

of a landscape nature, with a low impact

on the environment (not designed for heavy

traffic) that is equipped with the appropriate

infrastructure in key connecting – stationary

nodes, which coincide with local centres

or important localities along this route. It

is worth mentioning that due to a higher

environmental sensitivity of the areas where

segments of this route are expected to fall, a

special attention should be given to the design

of the green belts along the route.

Central Axis, [Tirana - Elbasan - Berat -

Gjirokastra] will reinforce the north - south

connection of the country, which is of strategic

134


19°0'0"E

19°10'0"E

19°10'0"E

19°20'0"E

19°20'0"E

19°30'0"E

19°30'0"E

19°40'0"E

19°40'0"E

19°50'0"E

19°50'0"E

20°0'0"E

20°0'0"E

20°10'0"E

20°10'0"E

20°20'0"E

20°20'0"E

20°30'0"E

20°30'0"E

20°40'0"E

20°40'0"E

20°50'0"E

20°50'0"E

21°0'0"E

21°0'0"E

21°10'0"E

21°10'0"E

42°50'0"N

KOLASHIN

BERANE

POZAJE

42°50'0"N

ANDRIJEVICA

42°40'0"N

PEJE

PRISHTINE

42°40'0"N

VERMOSH

Vermosh-

Guci

Valbone

PLAV

42°10'0"N

42°30'0"N

42°30'0"N

PODGORICE

TAMARE

JEZERCE

THETH

VALBONE

Qafe Morine

42°20'0"N

Hani i

Hotit

RAZEM

Bajze

BOGE

NIKAJ-MERTUR

TROPOJE

Zhub

GJAKOVE

42°20'0"N

42°10'0"N

Liqeni

i

SHKODRËS Koplik

MALESI

E MADHE

FIERZE

Krume

HAS

Morine-

Vermice

PRIZREN

Zogaj

Grile

SHKODER

PUKE

Maja e

Pashtrikut

42°0'0"N

Muriqan

Mjede

VAU

I DEJES

KOMAN

FUSHE-ARREZ

KUKES

Shishtavec

TETOVE

SHKUP

42°0'0"N

ULQIN

Puljaj

Baqel

41°50'0"N

VELIPOJE

Lumi Buna

Lumi Drini i Vjetër

LEZHE

Rubik

MIRDITE

Rreshen

Bjeshka

e Oroshit

Korab

GOSTIVAR

41°50'0"N

Skuraj

Milot

Lure

DIBER

41°40'0"N

Lumi Mat

Kune-

Vain

Lumi Ishëm

Kepi i

Rodonit

KURBIN

Lac

Gjorm

Mamurras

KRUJE

Ulez

Spac

MAT Burrel

Luzni-Bulac

Blate

DEBAR

41°40'0"N

41°20'0"N

41°30'0"N

Gjiri i Ishem

Lalzit

Mali i Dajtit

Lumi Erzen

Budull Fushe Kruje

KLOS

DURRES VORE

Sukth

Mali me Gropa

Shkozet

Kashar

KAMEZ

Martanesh

SHIJAK

Yzberisht

Plazh

Golem

TIRANE

Shengjergj

Kuturman-

Qafa e Bushit

BULQIZE

Vicisht

Stebleve

Shebenike-

Jabllanice

41°20'0"N

41°30'0"N

41°0'0"N

41°10'0"N

Peze

Petrele

KAVAJE

Lekaj

Kalaja

e Turres

Bishqethem

PEQIN

RROGOZHINE

Lumi Shkumbin DIVJAKE

Paper

Dushk

BELSH

Karavasta

LUSHNJE

STRUGE

Kraste

Mirake

Xhyre

PRRENJAS Liqeni i OHRIT OHRID

ELBASAN

Qafe Thane

Qukes

Vidhas

Gjinar

Lin

CERRIK

Tushemisht

Dardhe-Xhyre

Memlisht

Stenje

41°0'0"N

41°10'0"N

40°50'0"N

Lumi Seman

Grykederdhja

Seman

Gradisht

Libofshe

KUCOVE

GRAMSH

Guri i Kuq

POGRADEC

PUSTEC

Liqeni

i

PRESPËS

40°50'0"N

40°40'0"N

Lumi Vjosë

Pishe-

Poro

Levan

URA

FIER VAJGURORE

RROSKOVEC

PATOS

BERAT

Mali i

Tomorrit

Voskopoje

MALIQ

Rezervati

Kangonji

Bilisht

40°40'0"N

Novosele

Narte

Kraps

Kasnice

MALLAKASTER

Ballsh

Rafineri

Molisht

Bogove

SKRAPAR

KORCE

Bredhi i

Drenoves

DEVOLL

Morrava

Kapshtice

40°30'0"N

SELENICE

VLORE

Corrush

POLICAN

Odrican

Vithkuq

Nikolice

KASTORIA

40°30'0"N

40°10'0"N

40°20'0"N

Karaburun

ORIKUM

Llogara

Kote

Prishte

Hotove-Dangelli

Izvor

MEMALIAJ

KOLONJE

KELCYRE

Piskal-Shqeri

Borove

Piskove

TEPELENE

Manastiri i PERMET

Ura e Nivanit

Leklit

Germenj-Shelegur

Progonate

Kuc

Parku

Petran

Natyror

Zheji

HIMARE Ftere

Kardhiq

LIBOHOVE

40°10'0"N

40°20'0"N

LEGEND

40°0'0"N

Borsh

Rezervati

Rrezome

DELVINE

GJIROKASTER

Konica

KONICA

40°0'0"N

International /national main corridors

Interurban roads

Jorgucat Kakavije

Regional/urban road

Airport

39°50'0"N

SARANDE

Mesopotam

FINIQ

DROPULL

39°50'0"N

International hub

National hub

Port / Anchor point

Border crossing point

39°40'0"N

0 5 10 20 30 40

Km

KORFUZ

Butrint

KONISPOL

Qafe Bote

FILIATES

IOANNINA

39°40'0"N

Main station

Station only for goods

Passengers station

Municipal center

Protected natural tourist areas

Marine tourist area

Map 3.18 Road transport and multimodal nodes, GNP 2030

135


importance to Albania's integration within

the central European corridors. It will also

improve the inland urban centre links.

Eastern Corridor [Tropoja - Has - Kukes -

Dibra - Bulqiza - Prrenjas - Pogradec - Erseka

- Leskovik], due to the physical characteristics

of the territory, mainly mountainous and hilly,

this link is not an easy task, but it is important

in terms of investments in improving the

quality of the existing road infrastructure

and where possible deviations and shorter

connections between cites and urban centres

in general. This connection is important in

terms of strengthening the country's eastern

gates in particular, also mitigating the

marginalization of the urban centres of the

country's eastern suburbs.

Implications of the road infrastructure

network in the multimodal transport

- Implementation of a road investment

program under the GNP is a key element in

increasing the accessibility and better regional

development throughout the territory of

Albania.

- Regional and secondary roads will play a

key role in linking the main national transport

corridors to rural areas and smaller local

centres within these areas, which will need

to be supported with funding policies and

programs.

- Further improvements will be needed to

increase the quality of road connections

between urban centres, which will be

developed as gateway cities or multimodal

hub centres, with a special focus on Lezha,

Durres, Vlora, Himara, Saranda.

b) Air transport

• 40% of the international tourists currently

travel via air transport.

• Air transport industry generates a total of 29

million jobs globally (through direct, indirect

and induced catalytic impact).

• Aviation is estimated for its high utilization

norms (occupancy) from 65 to 70%, which

is more than the double of the road and rail

transport.

• Air transport completely covers its

infrastructural costs. Unlike road and rail

transport, it is a net contributor to the

National Treasury through taxation. 41

• The airline industry has contributed to

the globalization of the world economy. It

connects buyers and sellers, transports goods

through nations, breaks barriers of distance

and time. 42

Factors affecting the growth of air traffic

are myriad, complex and act globally,

regionally and nationally. Among other main

factors of economic growth is the economic

development of a country, which is generally

expressed by the GDP. A country with a

high GDP means a developed market and

employees who travel to develop their firms

and to expand the market of operation. This is

translated into lower rates of unemployment

and higher household incomes leading to

increased desire to travel. Reduction in real

costs of air travel leads directly to the growth

of air traffic. Otherwise known as "South East

Effect" is the phenomenon of galloping growth

of air passenger traffic due to reductions in

the costs of flying and introduction into the

market of Low Cost lines. Such an example

in Europe is Ryan Air, famous for "Weekend

getaways" enabled to European citizens.

Population growth rates are another factor

that affects the growth of air traffic. This

phenomenon is generally observed in

countries with significant demographic growth

such as India or China. But despite this, for

the increase in population to affect the growth

of air transport it must be accompanied

by increased income per capita. Economic

liberalization is another key factor that directly

has an impact on AT. A free market increases

competition, improves quality and brings

travel cost reduction by enhancing the high

figures of passengers.

41

http://www.icao.int/Meetings/wrdss2011/Documents/JointWorkshop2005/ATAG_SocialBenefitsAirTransport.pdf cit. Mott

MacDonald, 2005

42

Introduction to Air Transport Economics: From Theory to Applications, 2013

136


But, can the development of air transport

spur economic growth?

IATA 43 report on "Aviation Economic Benefits" 44

argues that the investment in AT can generate

economic benefits in a large scale. There are

important and positive benefits generated

by investments in aviation infrastructure and

services, particularly in emerging economies.

By increasing the links of a country in the

global air transport network, investment in

aviation can increase productivity and ensure

long-term economic growth.

Further liberalization helps to increase

the connectivity through air transport. AT

liberalization could further increase the

demand and ensure that the services which

provide connections to increase and to be

sustainable in the longer term. It also provides

the necessary commercial freedom for airlines

to adjust appropriately the capacities in order

to adapt to changes of the market demands.

For example, the increased connectivity in

air services between Poland and the United

Kingdom since 2003 has increased by 27% the

GDP of Poland, while growth in the UK, already

consolidated in this service, was much more

smaller, about 0.5%. These changes provide

a long-term estimated growth of Poland's

GDP of $634 million per year. The UK has also

benefited, with a GDP growth estimated at $45

million per year.

Broader economic benefits from aviation help

to enhance long term competitiveness. The

higher interconnection that AT provides and

improvements in productivity and GDP growth

that it can ensure, help to significantly increase

the competitiveness of a country. The World

Economic Forum (WEF) has developed a global

competitiveness index (GCI) for the travel and

tourism sector. WEF index includes many of

the factors needed to develop connections and

create wider economic benefits in terms of

productivity and economic growth. There is a

clear positive correlation between a country’s

liaison and its performance in the WEF index.

For emerging economies, annual economic

return rates (on investment in the AT sector)

are lower than in developed countries, still

remaining at high levels, ranging from 16%

to 28%. Developing countries face capital

expenditures, especially for new planes,

which are similar to those faced by developed

countries. Thus, although the increase in

GDP is proportionally higher in emerging

economies, capital expenditures are still high.

However, the available economic return is still

high and provides a strong justification for

investment in the aviation industry.

GNP proposes liberalization of the market

in this sector bringing in Low Cost airlines.

Thus, two new airports in the north and

south of our country are proposed. In

the North, the airport of Kukes has been

materialized as an investment. Whereas in

the south, it is suggested to construct the

airport more inland of the territory in order

to protect the vulnerability of the Albanian

coastline. However, a feasibility study should

be carried out by the responsible sectorial

transport authorities, in order to define

more specifically the location of this airport.

This airport will serve, among others, the

cities of Saranda and Gjirokastra, which

have both been considered not only as the

main urban centres for the next 15 years,

but are also designed as entry gates to

the most interesting tourist regions of our

country. Concurrently, the former airport

fields in Shkodra and Korça are proposed to

be preserved free from construction, while

assessing the possibility to develop them to

the benefit of the air transport in the near

future.

This proposal directly affects the achievement

of the objectives of the GNP: increasing

competitiveness in the region, raising the

country's connectivity with the region and

beyond, and therefore expanding markets and

economic growth.

In collaboration with MTI, indicators should

be developed to measure the country's

43

International Air Transport Association (IATA) is the global commercial company for airline companies, which

represents 260 airline companies or 83% of the total air traffic

44

http://www.iata.org/publications/economics/Documents/890700-aviation-economic-benefits-summary-report.pdf

137


connection with the region and beyond, the

accessibility and its permeability.

c) Maritime transport

- Europe (EU/EEA) has the largest fleet of

ships in the world, directly employing around

300,000 sailors aboard commercial vessels

and 3 million people in related jobs. 45

- The White Paper published by the

European Commission, which reflected the

ambitions and goals of the EU for 2050,

stated as a main goal the unification of

the transport system to solve the needs of

500 million European citizens. Regarding

seaports, the goal is their connection with

the transport of goods and where possible

with inland waterways. 46

- Considering that over 80% of world trade

is carried out by sea freight, maritime

transport remains the backbone supporting

international trade and globalization. For

the EU, which remains the most important

exporter at the global level and the second

importer, shipping and all other marine

services are essential in helping European

companies to compete globally. 47

- Nearly 40% of the exchange of goods

between the EU member states is

carried out by sea. Each year, 400 million

passengers arrive or depart from the

European ports. The domestic market for

the provision of maritime transport services

has a key role in the performance of the

European economy as a whole and the

quality of life and prosperity of maritime

regions. The islands and peripheral regions

are especially dependent on maritime

transport. 48

European ports are vital inputs, which

connect its transport corridors with the

rest of the world. 74% of goods enter or exit

Europe by sea pass, which lead Europe to

be the best regarding port services in the

world. Ports play an important role in the

exchange of goods in the domestic market

and in connecting peripheral areas and

islands to the mainland. They are not only

essential to the movement of goods, but also

generate employment. 1.5 million workers

are employed in European ports, with the

same amount again employed indirectly in

22 maritime European countries. 49

Meanwhile, the important Albanian ports of

Durres, Vlora and Shengjin, are not noticed

on the "List of Sea Ports in the Core and

Comprehensive Networks” 50 .

This is a disadvantage, which the GNP

seeks to address through the corridors

proposed and the primary reinforced centres

by converting these cities into entry and

exit gates for the country, but also into

strategically strong points with important

gravitating inflow of tourists transport,

goods, and energy distribution nodes.

Becoming part of the development of the

national infrastructure, which connects

Albania to the pan-European corridors

and strengthening major ports will lead to

development and making Albania part of the

European-funded development programs.

For example, "The new guidelines for

the development of the trans-European

transport network (TEN-T)" have already

identified 329 key ports along the European

coastline, which will become part of a

unified network boosting development and

competitiveness growth in the European

Common Market. In this way the financial

instrument, which will connect the services

will provide up to €26 billion to support the

European infrastructure including ports and

their inland connection for 2014-2020. 51

45

http://ec.europa.eu/transport/strategies/facts-and-figures/transport-matters/index_en.htm cit: ECSA, Bimco/ISF, ITMMA

46

http://www.gizmag.com/single-european-transport-area/18345/ (last access 03/09/2015)

47

http://ec.europa.eu/transport/modes/maritime/international_en.htm (last access 03/09/2015)

48

http://ec.europa.eu/transport/modes/maritime/internal_market/index_en.htm (last access 03/09/2015)

49

http://ec.europa.eu/transport/modes/maritime/ports/ports_en.htm (last acess 03/09/2015)

50

http://ec.europa.eu/transport/modes/maritime/ports/doc/2014_list_of_329_ports_june.pdf (last access 03/09/2015)

138


Proposals

GNP proposes increasing and strengthening

the main existing ports in Albania.

The port of Shengjin, Durres, Vlora and

Saranda are proposed to increase their

capacity and functions, according to the

studies that will ensure the differentiation

of functions and technical projects, for the

implementation of adequate conditions.

The port of Saranda as well, is proposed to

increase its capacity, oriented towards the

tourism sector.

construction to be only associated with

increased tourist activity in inhabited centres,

whether existing villages or secondary

coastal cities. Construction of marinas

in underdeveloped areas requiring new

connecting infrastructure and not indicating

a direct impact on economic growth and

empowerment of the existing residential

centres around them, is not promoted.

- Port of Shengjin is proposed to be profiled

as the port of the main urban centres of

Lezha and Shkodra, and the western and

northern gates of the axis Lezha - Nish and

Shkodra- Podgorica.

- Port of Durres is suggested to receive

investments to increase its capacity and

complementary functions. It is proposed

as the central western gate connecting the

national roads of Corridor VIII to the West and

the corridor Scandinavia - Mediterranean.

Concurrently, the industrial port of Porto

Romano, near the port of Durres, as its

complementary part, is suggested to be

connected with the adequate infrastructure

and supplemented with complementary

functions.

- Port of Vlora is proposed to receive

investments to increase its capacity and

complementary functions. It is proposed to

serve as the south-western gate, which is an

important node of a strategic axis, not only

as a transport corridor, but also as an energy

corridor.

- Port of Saranda is proposed to receive

investments to increase its capacity and

convert it into a main tourist port.

• GNP suggests that the construction of

marinas should be closely related to the

development of cities and tourist areas.

In this regard, the Plan suggest their

51

http://ec.europa.eu/transport/modes/maritime/ports/ports_en.htm

139


19°0'0"E

19°10'0"E

19°10'0"E

19°20'0"E

19°20'0"E

19°30'0"E

19°30'0"E

19°40'0"E

19°40'0"E

19°50'0"E

19°50'0"E

20°0'0"E

20°0'0"E

20°10'0"E

20°10'0"E

20°20'0"E

20°20'0"E

20°30'0"E

20°30'0"E

20°40'0"E

20°40'0"E

20°50'0"E

20°50'0"E

21°0'0"E

21°0'0"E

21°10'0"E

21°10'0"E

42°50'0"N

KOLASHIN

BERANE

POZAJE

42°50'0"N

ANDRIJEVICA

42°40'0"N

PEJE

PRISHTINE

42°40'0"N

VERMOSH

Vermosh-

PLAV

Guci

Valbone

42°10'0"N

42°30'0"N

VALBONE

42°30'0"N

42°20'0"N

PODGORICE

TAMARE

BOGE

Hani i

Hotit

RAZEM

Bajze

JEZERCE

THETH

NIKAJ-MERTUR

TROPOJE

Qafe Morine

Zhub

GJAKOVE

42°20'0"N

42°10'0"N

Liqeni

i

SHKODRËS Koplik

MALESI

E MADHE

FIERZE

Krume

HAS

Morine-

Vermice

PRIZREN

41°50'0"N

42°0'0"N

Zogaj

Muriqan

ULQIN

Lumi Buna

Puljaj

VELIPOJE

Lumi Drini i Vjetër

Grile

SHKODER

Mjede

VAU

I DEJES

Baqel

KOMAN

LEZHE

Rubik

PUKE

FUSHE-ARREZ

Bjeshka

e Oroshit

MIRDITE

Rreshen

Maja e

Pashtrikut

KUKES

Shishtavec

Korab

GOSTIVAR

TETOVE

SHKUP

41°50'0"N

42°0'0"N

Railway lines

Stations as per their functions

Logistic nodes

Hani i Hotit

Skuraj

Lure

DIBER

Bajze

41°40'0"N

Lumi Mat Milot

Kune-

Vain KURBIN

Lac

Lumi Ishëm

Gjorm

kepi i Rodonit

Mamurras

KRUJE

Ulez

Spac

MAT Burrel

Luzni-Bulac

Blate

DEBAR

41°40'0"N

Koplik

Grile

SHKODER

Mjede

Morine

KUKES

40°10'0"N

40°20'0"N

40°30'0"N

40°40'0"N

40°50'0"N

41°0'0"N

41°10'0"N

41°20'0"N

41°30'0"N

Lumi Vjosë

Lumi Seman

Lumi Erzen

Lumi Shkumbin

Pishe-

Poro

Levan

Novosele

Narte

Gjiri i Ishem

Lalzit

Budull

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Shkozet SHIJAK

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KAVAJE

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Karavasta

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SELENICE

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Dushk

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FIER VAJGURORE

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Llogara

Kote

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Petrele

Paper

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Odrican

Voskopoje

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MALIQ

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Qafe Thane

KORCE

Shebenike-

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KELCYRE

Piskal-

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Bredhi i

Drenoves

DEVOLL

Morrava

Liqeni

i

PRESPËS

Bilisht

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Kapshtice

KASTORIA

41°30'0"N

41°20'0"N

41°10'0"N

41°0'0"N

40°50'0"N

40°40'0"N

40°30'0"N

40°20'0"N

40°10'0"N

Shkozet

DURRES

Sukth

Plazh

Golem

Kavaje

Lekaj

Baqel

Rreshen Fushe-Arrez

LEZHE

Rubik

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Fabrika e cimentos (Cement factory)

Fushe-Kruje

Budull

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