The agreement was signed jointly by the Swiss Ambassador Adrian Maître, Albania’s Minister of State for Relations with Parliament Elisa Spiropali, and Head of the OSCE Presence in Albania, Bernd Borchardt, and with the attendance of the Secretary General of the Albanian Assembly, Genc Gjonçaj.
“This agreement is part of the Swiss Cooperation’s strategy in Albania, in terms of building democratic institutions that are representative and well-functioning. The project aims to develop the Parliament into a beter-performing institution. Our project is inclusive of all political actors”, said Swiss Ambassador Adrian Maître.
“It’s a pleasure to sign today this agreement on the project supporting the Parliament. Special thanks for our partners in this initiative, the Embassy of Switzerland for its contribution and OSCE for its continuous and uninterrupted support to the Albanian Parliament”, said the Minister of State for Relations with Parliament, Elisa Spiropali.
“The OSCE Presence in Albania has been the closest partner of the Albanian Assembly and people throughout their challenges, and will remain a strong supporter of Albania’s institutions and citizens as they tackle their highest priority tasks for a functional democracy,” Head of the OSCE Presence in Albania Ambassador Bernd Borchardt said.
According to the agreement, work will focus on making the Parliament’s administration more efficient and effective, on improving its legislative, representative and oversight functions, and on making citizens more active in relations to the Parliament. The project is titled ‘Support to Parliament and Civic Education in Albania’ – PACEP – and it will provide expertise and assistance in order to improve the functioning of Albania’s main legislative institution.
Since its establishment, the OSCE Presence in Albania has worked to promote democratization, the rule of law, and human rights as well as to consolidate democratic institutions in line with OSCE principles, standards and commitments. The support to the Parliament is considered a cross-cutting and cross-programmatic endeavour within the OSCE support to Albania, including on areas of law-making, legislative reform, parliamentary procedures and capacity building, electoral reform, civic engagement, gender equality and promotion of good governance.
The new project is part of the Swiss Cooperation Strategy for the years 2018-2021 and it is the first time Swiss support extends to the highest legislative body in the country. The funding comes from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, SDC