Enhancing the Development of Albanian Maritime Sector through Technical Assistance and Increased Partnership

What is the project about?

The maritime sector is rapidly increasing in the past years, as a source for further economic development and international cooperation. The Government of Albania has made progress in maintenance and infrastructure of port facilities in line with the Sector Strategy, priorities stipulated in the Government Programme, the National Transparent Plan, the National Strategy for Development and Integration and the Medium- Term Budget Plan. Maritime transport is primarily concerned with the transport of freight and passengers by sea. The sector is associated with many other activities such as ship agency, chartering and brokering, maritime labour and education, multimodal and intermodal transport and related services.

Cooperation on various services, especially those linked with capacity building in the public sector and better coordination of planning activities is needed for preparing the ground for better marine and maritime governance and services.

The overall objective of this project is to promote the integration of Albanian Maritime Standards in line with the EU requirements, by developing and implementing maritime transport policy framework, improving capacities in the field and encouraging the development of a Maritime Cluster with relevant stakeholders.


  1. Improve the public governance of the maritime sector.
  2. Raise institutional capacity and competence to implement policies, standards and regulations.
  3. Increase efforts on coordination and competitiveness between four ports and promote the development of a maritime cluster in Albania with relevant stakeholders.
  4. Improve environmental standards and emergency response capabilities in the maritime sector.

The main identified target groups at national and local level are, MIE (Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy), The General Maritime Directorate (GMD), Port authorities (PA) in Albania, The Albanian Coast Guard, The Ministry of Tourism and Environment, and Private sector.

Expected Results 

  1. Strengthened policy, legal and regulatory framework in place to support the Government of Albania in maritime sector development; - A sound maritime regulatory framework in accordance to the international maritime practice and EC regulations will ensure the development of standards in compliance with EU and International obligations;
  2. Institutional capacity to harmonise standards and regulations through training and twinning programmes; - An exchange mechanism between Albanian Maritime Administration (AMA) with the Norwegian Maritime Authority will provide for building and strengthening institutional capacity.
  3. Strengthened financial sustainability for the General Maritime Directorate(GMD); - Enable the environment to support the GMD financial sustainability from viable income generating schema accompanied by a business plan.
  4. Feedback provided by stakeholders and insights related to maritime sector to further elaborate the role for Maritime Cluster and Potential that Albania has to develop one; - Assessment of the potential to develop a Maritime Cluster in Albania considering the following: (i) Specialization and perspectives, (ii) Gaps in existing national legislation, (iii) Promotion to research, development and innovation providing guidelines to develop at least one maritime cluster (Aquamarine, Tourism, Fishery or Transport).
  5. Capacity building of regional and national institution and other stakeholders (including business, younger, NGOs are improved);
  6. Piloting maritime solutions and raising public awareness regarding impact on environment and need for response;- Assessment on integrated solutions for prevention and management of marine litter in line with the ecosystem approach of the Barcelona Convention and ICZM.


1. Baseline assessment report finalized and discussed with the GMD and MIE:

(i) A baseline assessment and analysis of GMD functioning developed;

(ii) Expert group meetings to further clarify data on the activities, finances and legal basis of GMD conducted;

(iii) Consolidation of GMD Financial Analysis Model accomplished (a Sensitive Analysis Model based on DCF (Discounted Cash Flow) is developed in order to create financial basics for GMD transition to a self-funded entity;

(iv) Study Tour in Montenegro conducted to closely share experiences on regional model of Maritime Authority;

2. A sound institutional framework providing best practices and viable options on financial sustainability developed:

(i) A detailed gap analyses report on 32 Directives, Council Decisions and EC Regulations. 22 legal acts are being drafted in order to fully implement the above EU legislation.

(ii)Draft Law on GMD Amendment finalized where more in details: (a)  A SWOT analysis of GMD proposed law in order to build sustainability is prepared, (b) The amendment of the existing law to pave the way to add new functions to GMD and gradual change of GMD based on success of new tariff system collection is finalized;

(iii)28 Legal Acts have been drafted to ensure compliance with 32 EU Directives and Regulations accompanied by the respective table of concordance covering the area of (a) Maritime policy (b) Flag State (c) Passenger ships (d) Insurance, but not limited to.

3. Study Analysis (SA) on the potential of developing Maritime Cluster in Albania is drafted:

The study Analysis is expected to be finalized by December '19, considering the following: (i) Specialization and perspectives, (ii) Gaps in existing natinal legislation, (iii) Promotion on research, development and innovation, (iv) The guidelines to establish at least one maritime cluster in Albania

- Blue Economy Programme for Albania 

(i)The Blue Economy Pragramme is led by the Prime Ministry’s Unit for Development Programs and Cooperation in the Department for Development and Good governance in close consultation and cooperation with line Ministries. Such Programme determines the strategic vision of GoA for Maritime sector and clear action plans for interventions.

(ii)Based in four components, the Blue Economy Programme seeks to: (i) Improve institutional and human capacity for delivering the maritime economy, (ii) Create appropriate financial mechanisms to support private sector by improving public fishery related infrastructure, (iii) Establish the Albanian coast as a new marina tourism hub, as well as a connectivity hubs in the region and broader, and (iv) Consolidate tourism hubs (clusters) and maritime ecosystems by securing provisions of financial support for small and medium enterprises (SMEs), fishermen and other entrepreneurs in the vicinity of ports.

4. A permanent database on economic facts and figures with the perspective of maritime cluster and the role in the future is in progress where: (i) Report describing the nature of activities around maritime cluster concept and priority areas is developed, and (ii) A database on economic facts and figures is established.

5. Institutional capacities and competences to implement policies, standards and regulations improved

(i)Assessment of Maritime Education Training sector and performance in Albania finalized and an updated Training Needs Assessment report developed.

(ii)Training of Trainers modules and syllabuses established;

(iii)Financial and technical analysis of the General Maritime Directorate, with prioritized actions to be taken and their time to achieve the GMD institutional and financial sustainability.



October 2018


December 2022






United Nations Development Programme





MPTF-SDGs Acceleration Fund for Albania









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