Abu Dhabi Fund for Development, ADFD, has launched infrastructure projects in Albania valued at AED240 million (US$65 million).
A delegation of the fund led by Adel Al Hosani, Director of Operations Department at ADFD, participated in the official inauguration of the final phase of ADFD funded projects in capital Tirana, the Tirana Northern Boulevard and Tirana River Rehabilitation projects.
Also present on the occasion were Erion Veliaj, Mayor of Tirana, Mohamed Mir Abdullah Yousef Al Raisi, UAE Ambassador to Greece and Non-Resident Ambassador to Albania, and several senior Albanian officials.
Aiming to revitalise the tourism and commercial sectors, the Tirana projects will continue to contribute to attracting investment opportunities to the Albanian capital. Spanning a total area of about 885 hectares, works included constructing a 2.4 kilometre-long boulevard ranging in width from 40 to 70 metres.
Speaking on the occasion, Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi, Director-General of ADFD, said, "The Fund’s participation in the opening of these important strategic projects demonstrates the excellent bilateral relations that exist between the UAE and Albania, and our shared determination to strengthen synergies in various areas for the benefit of the people of our two nations.
"ADFD has contributed to the Northern Boulevard and Tirana River Rehabilitation projects in Tirana through allocating US$65 million in concessionary loans to support the Albanian economy and develop the infrastructure of Tirana. We are encouraged to witness that our contribution has played a crucial role in boosting business and tourism in Tirana, while also improving the overall business environment and creating new job opportunities for its residents."
He added, "In financing key developmental projects that support diverse vital sectors, we aim to ultimately benefit Albanian citizens through driving sustainable economic development. These projects are well aligned with ADFD’s objectives of helping the international community achieve sustainable growth in developing countries."
For his part, Erion Veliaj noted ADFD’s global development endeavours and achievements in financing projects that support socio-economic development in developing countries. Furthermore, he praised the bilateral relations between the two countries and ADFD’s strategic partnership in supporting the realisation of key development projects in Albania.
In 2013, ADFD allocated an AED103 million concessionary loan for the Tirana River Rehabilitation project to revitalise the bed of the Tirana River, its banks and the surrounding areas. In the same year, the Fund extended an AED137 million concessionary loan to finance the Tirana Northern Boulevard project. Works included a two-storey underground car park with 400 parking spaces, equipped with an electric vehicle charging station. The project focused on developing the infrastructure surrounding Tirana’s Northern Boulevard with the aim of attracting investments, tourists and trade.
Since 2011, the ADFD has provided loans and grants amounting to AED424 million to the government to Albania, allocated to financing three vital projects in key economic sectors.