Decentralization and Local Regional Development

The Decentralization and Local Regional Development Unit was shaped as a new thematic unit in Co-PLAN’s agenda in the early 2000s, and today it constitutes one of the core expertise units of the organization. For many years Co-PLAN has supported local governments, NGOs, and business communities in addressing urban development issues through the preparation of territorial development strategies, urban regulatory plans, detailed local plans, and other guiding documents. The advancement of the decentralization process and the increasing number of responsibilities delegated to local government have made imperative clear policies on the financing and implementation of local economic development strategies. To this end, Co-PLAN supports and advises local governments to improve municipal finances management practices and adoption of new instruments in the pursuit of their development strategies. In recent years, Co-PLAN has supported many municipalities to improve financial performance through the preparation of the capital investment programs, annual budgets generated through participatory practices, and the improved levying of taxes.

Co-PLAN offers the following expertise services and products:

  • Urban Development Strategies;
  • Local Economic Development Strategies;
  • Regional Development Programming;
  • Conceptualization and designing of Capital Investment Plans (CIPs);
  • Designing and monitoring of indicators for annual reviews of local CIPs;
  • Application of methodologies for investment prioritarisation;
  • Training local organizations and local government officials in the implementation and monitoring of CIPs;
  • Set-up of asset databases and asset management consulting;
  • Assisting and advising local authorities in the administration of municipal assets;
  • Assisting and coaching local governments in the budgeting process, preparation of the fiscal packages, and medium term budgeting;
  • Training local government officials in organizing participatory budgeting processes;
  • Designing and implementation of financial management tools;
  • Advisory services and assistance to local governments in improving revenue collection through the effective levy and collection of the local taxes and user charges;
  • Preparation of GIS systems and database for the administration and management of local taxes;
  • Assessment of capital needs and financial capacities both for private and public institutions;
  • Analysis of local financial capacities, creditworthiness and advising on local borrowing procedures;
  • Conducting “Public Expenditure and Financial Accountability” Assessments (PEFA);
  • Contribute to Public Financial Management reforming processes, decentralization and local governance, local finances etc.;
  • Conducting feasibility studies for public services;
  • Training on Public Private Partnerships (PPPs);
  • Conducting cost-benefit analyses;
  • Costing of public services provision and pricing of user charges;
  • Design and implementation of surveys, data processing and reporting;
  • Data mining and statistical analyses.

Below is a list with key publications of the urban and regional governance unit:

  1. Strategic Development Plan of Fushë-Arrëz Municipality
  2. Manual for Capital Investment Planning
  3. Strategic Development Planning and Performance Based Budgeting in the Medium Term
  4. Public Expenditure and Financial Accountability_ Assessment in the Municipality of Fier
  5. The Regionalisation of Albania
  6. Towards Regional Operational Programing
  7. Regional Disparities in Albania
  8. Designation of the Development Regions of Albania
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