International support to biodiversity conservation in Albania announced

15 November 2011 | News story

Representatives of Albanian and Italian Governments, Albanian local government, international organizations, donors, universities, civil society and the media gathered today to mark the start of a project focused on institutional capacity building and support to the environmental protection in Albania. The event is organized by the Italian Embassy in Tirana and the Albanian Ministry of Environment, Forest and Water Administration (MoEFWA), with the support of IUCN.

The event presents the 2 years long project which will support national and local staff of the Ministry and contribute to the development of technical, planning and implementation capacities of these offices. The overall objective of the project is to strengthen both central and local offices of the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Water Administration in developing technical and implementation capacities to systematically plan and manage protected areas.

“IUCN is committed to strengthening the effectiveness of protected areas in Albania and providing global protected area management standards through its expert network”, says Boris Erg, Director of IUCN’s Programme Office for South-Eastern Europe.”Improved protected area management will help safeguard invaluable biodiversity of Albania but also lay solid ground for sustainable development of local communities”.

The project will also contribute to an enhancement of local socio-economic conditions through the promotion of alternative sustainable economic activities for local populations residing near or within the two selected Project protected areas: Shebenik-Jabllanicë National Park and Velipojë Protected Landscape. These selected sites provide vast ecosystem services for the population, for example they guarantee the quality and permanence of water and prevent coastal erosion. Both areas are also bordering with other countries and the dialogue on biodiversity conservation between Albania and these two countries may also lead to a broader systemic approach to conservation.

For further information please contact:
Aleksandra Nesic, Operations Officer, IUCN Programme Office for South Eastern Europe; Tel:+381-11-2272-411, Mob: +381-63-357-407