Accompanying the €1.15 billion in reconstruction aid, international donors have stipulated clear terms of engagement for Albania in a statement of intent released after the conference held in Brussels on February 17. The parties are the Albanian Republic, the Council of Europe Development Bank, the European Investment Bank, the EU represented by the European Commission, and the World Bank.
Find a summary of the most pertinent principles of engagement below;
A uniform national housing reconstruction program that ensures coordination of multiple international and national initiatives and consistently applied standards for equity, irrespective of funding sources, is needed. This must be guided by harmonized, clear and fully enforced policies.
Clear implementation arrangements, with defined responsibilities of and effective coordination between all levels including national and local authorities, should be agreed. Implementation can be led by a dedicated housing reconstruction agency, or alternative constructs involving multiple relevant Ministries and Agencies, so long as responsibilities and the decision-making hierarchy are clearly delineated and followed. Procurement, financial management, auditing and monitoring requirements and processes must be defined up front.
Monitoring of progress indicators, timelines, and flows of all funds must be published on-line regularly.
A clear communication strategy and a grievance redress mechanism must be integral to program design. Potential negative social and environmental impacts of demolition, new construction and/or new settlement plans must be pro-actively managed.
Public resources must prioritize and support the most vulnerable households, with due consideration of gender issues and through the application of nondiscriminatory principles. Existing and new social issues that may arise during reconstruction must be monitored and addressed, including fair and forward-looking policy reforms to address illegal housing and construction.
The national housing reconstruction program must be owner-driven, with effective participation and consultation mechanisms.
Interventions to ensure adequate, consistent and fair-priced supply of building materials should be considered.
Institutional and regulatory frameworks that promote resilient reconstruction are required, including codification of multi-hazard risk reduction aligned with the Eurocodes, improved construction quality control, expansion of property insurance, and assurance that settlement designs pursue concepts of livability and infrastructure resilience. These must be supported by sufficiently empowered and capacitated institutions.
Housing reconstruction must support broader urban development goals, including promotion of transformative urban development that is modern, green, low-carbon and community friendly. Potential impacts to the environment during reconstruction are to be avoided and/or properly mitigated with special attention to waste management, recycling and life-cycle approaches.