Celebrating the Local Economic Development Agency of Vlora (AULEDA) 10th Anniversary
AULEDA, one of the main partners of UNDP Art Gold 2 programme, celebrated its 10th Anniversary in a ceremony that brought together representatives of the regional and local authorities, traditional contributors of Vlora’s development such as the Italian Cooperation (for Development), and other important development actors from the civil society and academia.
AULEDA was established through the United Nations assistance to Albania in 2003 and since then has grown into a lead partner for local development actions. UNDP Albania through the ART GOLD 2 programme has assisted the region of Vlora in the growth and strengthening of this agency. During the last three and a half years the programme has collaborated with Vlora’s Regional and Municipal authorities as well as AULEDA in the process of strategic planning and implementation of strategic priorities. These interventions are vital for Vlora’s sustainable development, a region rich in natural resources and human capabilities with a great potential to be a top tourist attraction site in Europe.
During her speech Mrs. Yesim Oruc, UNDP Country Director pointed out that AULEDA has firmly established itself as a quality player in the regional context, as a local development agency, striving to reach standards of Local Economic Development (LED) agencies in the EU member state countries. Vlora region municipalities and communes can and do rely on AULEDA for technical expertise in sustainable tourism development, agriculture, fisheries, handicrafts, and the like. But more importantly, AULEDA brings effective methodological approaches and tools such as strategic planning, mapping of resources and territorial marketing for such development efforts.
The Deputy Mayor of Vlora Mr. Arben Beqiraj on behalf of the Mayor of Vlora emphasized that AULEDA’s 10th Anniversary is a historical moment not only for the agency but also for the city of Vlora having been transformed in an important image of the latter. To him AULEDA is a confirmation that successful models can be also created within our communities.
During the ceremony the AULEDA Head of Board Mrs. Mimoza Breçani and the Executive Director Mrs. Mirela Koçi extended their gratitude to UNDP for contributing to the agency’s growth and development. Furthermore, UNDP Albania received a 'Certificate of Appreciation' for the contribution given during the years.
AULEDA is a non-profit non-governmental organization established in August 2003 in Vlora with the United Nations support, Albania, as part of the international network of Local Economic Development Agencies. AULEDA is an independent body, with its own legal structure and functional autonomy, based on a public-private partnership.
During AULEDA’s 10 years of activity:
- inter-municipal and regional Strategic Plans have been developed following a participatory methodology;
- local economic potentialities have been mapped;
- around 150 enterprises have received technical assistance, and 16 of them have also received financial support thanks to the Guarantee Fund;
- 214,000 USD have been delivered to entrepreneurs as credits, with 100% return rate;
- 150 jobs have been created;
- 2500 people have received professional training or have been trained in enterprise management;
- the constitution of 4 social enterprises has been promoted, and the enterprises have consequently been financially supported;
- 35 projects have been implemented, for a total amount of 1,500,000 Euro managed by AULEDA.