Jaà§o: "Most investments within the region are focused in Serbia and North Macedonia"

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times February 11, 2020 08:00

Jaà§o:

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  • In this line, Jaço stressed that Albania needs an investment reform, as corruption is widespread and seriously impedes investment inflows.

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TIRANA, Feb. 11 - In the annual ACC Conference, the President of the American Chamber of Commerce, Enio Jaà§o, pointed out the difference between Albania and North Macedonia's in terms of attracting U.S. investments, raising concern over the country's business climate. According to Jaà§o, most investments within the region are focused in Serbia and North Macedonia, while Albania is left behind.

Currently, the Albanian economy is facing a contraction of investments due to the finalization of the two biggest infrastructure projects, TAP and the Devoll Hydropower plant as well as due to the November 26 earthquake effects. In this line, Jaà§o stressed that Albania needs an investment reform, as corruption is widespread and seriously impedes investment inflows.

The President of AmCham emphasized the successful experiences of North Macedonia and Serbia in attracting U.S investments, which Albania can learn from in order to improve its own business climate. In North Macedonia, around 230 million dollars of FDI inflows originate from the United States and it is generally seen as a country with a good business climate due to the Law on Technological Industrial Development Zones (TIDZs) and the Law on Financial Support of Investments offering incentives to investors. According to a U.S. Embassy report, "Investors in the TIDZs are eligible for tax exemptions for a period of up to 10 years of operation in proportion to the size of investment and number of employees.   Investors in the TIDZs are exempt from paying duties for equipment and machines as well as municipality tax for construction."

Serbia's business climate proves even more favorable for U.S. investors, as investments total over 3 billion as of today and keep growing. In 2019, Serbia was ranked first in the first position in the world as a country with the highest number of newly created jobs through FDI projects, according to

On the other hand, Albania attracts much less U.S. investments than the two countries and according to the Doing Business 2020 report, the business climate is less favorable for foreign investors. "We have reports of a decrease in income during the last quarter of 2019 but consumer spending will be affected during the first quarter of 2020 as well," Jaà§o said, referring to the post-earthquake situation in the country.

This is not the first time that the AmCham President calls for the implementation of an investment reform. In November of last year, he said that Albania exhibits great potential to become a regional leader in terms of Foreign Direct Investments, but issues such as corruption and lack of transparency have not made that possible. Besides the Justice Reform, Albania needs to implement an investment reform in order to improve its business climate, Jaà§o said during an interview with the VOA.

 

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times February 11, 2020 08:00