Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD), the national entity for development aid, welcomed a high-level delegation from Albania at its headquarters and explored potential areas of cooperation.
Headed by HE Erion Veliaj, Mayor of Tirana, the delegation met with HE Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi, Director General of ADFD, along with HE Ermal Dredha, Albanian Ambassador to the UAE, Khalifa Al Qubaisi, Deputy Director General of ADFD, and senior management representatives from the Fund. The two sides discussed bilateral relations between the UAE and Albania and explored ways of enhancing synergies in shared areas of interest. The meeting also examined ADFD’s leading role in financing development projects and achieving socio-economic progress in the East European nation.
“The visit of the Albanian delegation marks an important step in bolstering cooperation between the UAE and Albania, especially with regard to development opportunities and assistance. Over the last seven years, ADFD’s special relations with the Albanian government have advanced steadily, with the Fund financing three strategic projects in Albania valued at AED424 million,” said Al Suwaidi.
Assisting the Albanian government achieve its development goals, these projects have directly benefited large segments of the population through creating job opportunities and stimulating various economic sectors.
In October 2017, a technical delegation from ADFD, visited Albania to review the status of three of its financed ventures–the Tirana River Rehabilitation project, Tirana River Northern Boulevard project, and the Tirana-Elbasan Road project.
The Fund allocated a AED103 million concessionary loan for the Tirana River Rehabilitation project in 2013. More than 70 per cent of the river rehabilitation works are now complete and the project is slated for handover by Q2 2018. Revitalising the bed of the Tirana River, its shores and the surrounding areas will greatly enhance the environmental and living conditions in the area.
ADFD’s second project in Albania, the Tirana River Northern Boulevard project, was funded with an AED137 million concessionary loan in 2013. Works include a two-storey underground car park with 333 parking spaces, equipped with an electric vehicle charging station. This project focuses on developing the infrastructure surrounding the Tirana River’s Northern Boulevard with the aim of attracting investments, tourists and trade.
The Fund’s third project in Albania, the Tirana-Elbasan Road project, is funded via an AED184 million concessionary loan. The works include the construction of a 28.2-metre-wide, 27-kilometre-long highway with a 2.2-kilometre-long two-lane tunnel. Once complete, the tunnel will ensure smooth flow of traffic between the Albanian capital Tirana and the country’s third-largest city of Elbasan.