Opposition leader warns banking sector of being most exposed to corrupt PPPs

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times October 2, 2019 09:50

Opposition leader warns banking sector of being most exposed to corrupt PPPs

Story Highlights

  • Although noting that not every business engaged in the construction sector carries out illegal activity, Basha said some companies have received construction permits and public contracts at levels that are not justified either by their experience or by the financial opportunities they have. Basha cited as such the last two Private Public Partnership contracts for the Milot-Balldren and Orikum-Dukat road projects.

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TIRANA, Oct. 1 – Opposition leader Lulzim Basha addressed a letter to all banks operating in the country and the governor of the Bank of Albania expressing concern about the efforts of many stakeholders to launder large sums of money through licensed or public sector-controlled activities.

Basha wrote in his letter that the illicit activity of drug production and trafficking in Albania in recent years has generated billions of euros, some of which have been “used to corrupt government officials and public employees in order to launder money profited from the cultivation and trafficking of narcotics and/or corruption.”

In his letter, Basha also noted the opposition’s repeated warnings that “the banking sector is most exposed to cooperation between corrupt governments with some companies using the construction sector to launder money from illegal activities.”

Although noting that not every business engaged in the construction sector carries out illegal activity, Basha said some companies have received construction permits and public contracts at levels that are not justified either by their experience or by the financial opportunities they have. Basha cited as such the last two Private Public Partnership contracts for the Milot-Balldren and Orikum-Dukat road projects.

“Both public contracts openly infringe on the public interest and severely damage the financial interests of the Albanian state by providing unfair benefits to corrupt officials and private companies,” reads Basha’s letter on commercial banks.

“From the assessment of the financial and technical capacities of the private companies involved in these two projects, it turns out that they are not able to complete the projects on their own and consequently bank loans are foreseen. However, these companies will not have the real opportunity to repay the loan they will ask of you after the cancellation of unlawful state funding received as a result of corrupt practices,” he further adds. 

Noting the importance of the stability of the banking system for the united opposition, the opposition leader says he considers it reasonable to inform every bank about the fate of these two corrupt projects.

Basha says financing such projects, aimed at laundering money for trafficking and corruption, should not only be allowed, but also consider criminal the person or institution that has cooperated in this regard.

“We expect your bank to apply the ‘enhanced vigilance’ process to any transaction involving entities that are engaged in the above activities, particularly, given the indications that are public not only from the DP, but also from the international institutions’ specialized reports,” the letter concludes. 

 

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times October 2, 2019 09:50