International donor community (Development and Integration Partners – DIP) is involved in a “coordination mechanism”, whose aim is to promote aid harmonization. This mechanism is led by a high-level forum (Government - Donor Round-Table – DRT) and it regularly meets, at least twice a year. Donors usually convene into “DIP meetings”; their work is supported by a Donor Technical Secretariat (DTS), made of main international agencies in Albania (European Union, World Bank, OSCE and UNDP) and, since 2009, of two bilateral rotating donors. Furthermore, at sectorial level, there are specific meetings, the so-called “Sector Working Groups”; they are led by Albanian Line Ministries and supported by active donors in the specific sector.
There is a parallel coordination process within the European Union, the so-called “Fast Track-Division of Labour” (FT-DoL), where the Italian Cooperation, since 2008, took the peculiar role of “facilitator”. FT-DoL is an EU donors initiative (EU and Member States) and it aims to support, in some pilot countries, the gradual implementation of “EU Code of Conduct on Complementarity and the Division of Labour in Development Policy”. This document might be considered as the European translation of aid effectiveness agenda. One of the key principles of the Code of Conduct is “concentration”: in every beneficiary country, every European donor should be active in no more than 3 sectors and disengage (gradually, on the basis of a responsible strategy, shared with Partner country) from all the others. Moreover, every donor should take the leadership in one sector, assuring the strategic coordination among other European active donors. Therefore, they will be considered lead, active or non-active donor in every sector, according to their role.
In Albania, the Italian Cooperation promoted the creation of an informal working group, which saw the participation of the Delegation of the European Union, Austria, Germany, Sweden and Switzerland and, subsequently, the Albanian government. The working group carried out a comparative analysis about donors who are active in each sector (taking into account: actual aid flow, future investment prospective, capacities in assuring a strategic technical assistance); moreover donors expressed their interest in taking the leadership in some specific sectors, in accordance with the Albanian Government. These declarations, together with the analysis, lead to a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) which actually recognizes the lead donor for each sector, as follows:
- Austria: Water
- Germany: Rural Development and Agriculture (GTZ); Energy (KfW)
- EU Delegation: Civil society; Justice and Home Affairs; Quality and Internal Market
- Italy: Private Sector Development
- Sweden: Environment; Statistic
- Switzerland: Decentralization and Regional Development; Education and Vocational Training