Albania Financial Sector Development program

Expanding secure access to Albania’s financial sector by ensuring effective regulation of the financial sector and harmonizing regulatory practices with European Union standards.
  • Program Snapshot

  • Country: Albania
  • Award Value: $4,350,000
  • VEGA Lead Member: Financial Services Volunteer Corps (FSVC)
  • Objective: To promote financial stability and increase the flow of commercial credit to the private sector in support of sustained, broad-based economic growth and poverty reduction.
  • People Impacted: 889
  • Timeline: September 2011 – December 2016
  • Volunteers: 124
  • Local Partners:
    • Bank of Albania
    • Albanian Financial Supervisory Authority
    • Albanian Deposit Insurance Agency
    • General Directorate of Tax
  • Theme: Financial Services
FSVC USAID launch

(From Left): USAID Mission Director Joe Williams, FSVC President & CEO Andy Spindler and Bank of Albania Governor Ardian Fullani formally launch the Financial Sector Development Program.

FSVC 2

Working group at the Bank of Albania.

FSVC Projej 2583 David Koder

Volunteer experts present to representatives of Albania’s commercial banks.

The Financial Sector Development program aims to strengthen the Albanian financial sector by improving the quality and consistency of financial sector regulations and supervision.  The result of this assistance is a stable and sound financial sector, serving as a catalyst and stimulant for private sector growth, foreign direct investment and job creation.

Drawing on over a decade of experience in strengthening Albania’s financial sector, VEGA member FSVC is working with the Bank of Albania, the country’s central bank, and the Financial Supervisory Authority to increase access to Albania’s banking, insurance, investment and other financial sectors.  FSVC volunteer experts are training examiners, developing new and revising existing regulations, harmonizing supervisory practices with European Union standards and fostering linkages between Albania’s regulators, regional and EU regulators and the Albanian private sector.

Following a modification to the award, in 2013 the Financial Sector Development program began a project to build on Albania’s strong mobile network to develop a platform for mobile payments.  Working with the regulators, commercial banks, telecommunications companies and municipal governments, the project will create an enabling environment to encourage the private sector to embrace mobile technology as a method of increasing the public’s access to financial services.

The project will result in an information technology platform that will enable municipalities to collect taxes and utilities via mobile phones and encourage banks to use the technology to provide more citizens, particularly in rural areas, with access to the formal financial sector.  The financial regulators will also have the ability to effectively oversee the practice.

The award was again extended through 2016 to include work with Albania’s General Directorate for Tax (GDT).  FSVC volunteer experts will provide assistance to the GDT to improve Albania’s tax policy and collection, thus improving the country’s public financial management.