The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the Albanian Consulting Network (ACN) a business forum with Albanian entrepreneurs on ways to support internationalisation of small and medium sized enterprises and expand trading opportunities for SMEs.

EBRD is implementing advisory project for small businesses in Albania under the Bank’s Advice for Small Business Programme funded by the European Union. The objective of the project is to assist Albanian SMEs gain access to capacity building and know-how expertise in order to grow and become more competitive by establishing links to local and international consultancy services firms.

Small and medium-sized enterprises are the engine of a dynamic economy: they provide competitive goods and services, create jobs and generate economic growth. Exploring all possible trading opportunities is vital to them and, most frequently, this means access to markets abroad to grow their business.

Addressing the business forum, Minister of Economic Development, Tourism, Trade and Entrepreneurship, Milva Ekonomi, noted that small and medium sized enterprises represent the backbone of the economy in Albania. As a result, assisting and supporting SMEs in their internalisation in order to gain access to regional and the EU markets is vital.

Economic Development Minister also praised the EBRD’s role in supporting Albanian SMEs.

“EBRD in Albania is of a particular importance. Under the EBRD’s 2016-2019 strategy on Albania, a special attention is dedicated to programs aimed at enhancing competitiveness of the private sector along major energy projects,” Ekonomi said.

To date, the EBRD has invested €1 billion in 77 projects in Albania. Infrastructure and energy are the largest sectors of EBRD investments, reflecting both the country’s most pressing needs and strongest potential. Source ATA