The Western Balkans are booming. Despite this economic growth, however, youth unemployment remains a widespread problem. Dim future prospects induce many young Albanians to seek work abroad, which only exacerbates the situation in the country because companies can’t find skilled workers.
Helvetas supports cross-border labor market development in the Western Balkans (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo and Macedonia) with a view to creating jobs for young people in particular. We focus our efforts not only on stimulating the private sector, but also on boosting job-hunting services such as online employment portals. We also support various vocational training programs for young people.
Helvetas sometimes resorts to innovative forms of job market development: in Albania and Kosovo, for example, we work with TV stations to jointly develop infotainment formats that help young people prepare for choosing a career and looking for a job. Helvetas has been working in Albania since 2006.
The new Eastern European democracies are still quite fragile in a number of areas. Corruption is widespread, the legal systems are ineffectual, and authoritarian tendencies are increasingly resurgent in a number of countries. So Helvetas is working closely with local authorities to support institutional reforms and promote democracy. The object is to make public services more reliable and accessible, especially to sections of the population that are discriminated against.
In Albania Helvetas advises municipalities, for example, on matters of public transport and waste management. Local authorities also set up so-called one stop shops: the point is to streamline bureaucracy, enabling citizens to obtain information and/or services from various agencies and departments without having to wade through red tape – and right in their own municipality.
Visit the website of Helvetas Albania.
If you would like to know more about our work in Albania, click on each project for details.
Helvetas Eastern Europe Unit
Phone: +41 31 385 10 10