Construction of high-voltage transmission line near Shkoder, Albania

Core area “Climate and energy, just transition” Environment-friendly energy supply and sustainable urban development

Germany's activities in Albania are intended to help ensure that the country, and the entire region of South-Eastern Europe, has a power supply that is stable, sustainable and secure, and covers its costs. They also aim to make a contribution to global climate protection. In addition, Germany is also involved in sustainable urban development and in efforts to improve water supply and waste and wastewater disposal in Albania.

Synergies by linking power grid with neighbouring countries

More than 90 per cent of Albania's power generation is based on hydropower. When there are extended periods with little or no rain, Albania has to import electricity. The extension of transmission lines to neighbouring countries is intended to facilitate the import of power and, above all, the sale of electricity to Albania's neighbours. That is why Germany helps Albania through its development cooperation expand its high-voltage transmission networks, for instance to Montenegro, Kosovo and North Macedonia.

Germany is also providing financial support to Albania's efforts to build and expand transmission systems and substations, to improve safety at hydropower stations, and to invest in upgrading the energy performance of public buildings.

Nationwide water supply, environmentally-sound waste and wastewater treatment

Waterworks of Shkoder in Albania

Waterworks of Shkoder in Albania

Waterworks of Shkoder in Albania

Although Albania has sufficient water resources, many people in the country do not have access to safe drinking water. Considerable infrastructure deficits can be found in rural areas in particular. In many regions, wastewater and waste are not being disposed of properly. About one in three households is not connected to a sewer network. Waste is often taken to illegal or poorly managed dumps.

The government is undertaking major efforts to fundamentally reform the water sector. Among other things, it has transferred the management and ownership of water and sanitation utilities from the central government level to cities and municipalities. The government has also presented a waste management strategy, and it has adopted numerous laws and regulations, for instance on waste segregation, composting and recycling.

Impact on infrastructure

Germany is assisting Albania in modernising and expanding its infrastructure and adjusting water and wastewater management to EU standards. In the last few years, some 1.5 million people have benefited from new drinking water reservoirs, waterworks and wastewater treatment plants. Hundreds of kilometres of new water pipes have been installed.

In parallel, advice is being provided to ministries, municipalities and utilities on how to make water, wastewater and waste management environmentally sound while conserving resources and recovering costs. In the last few years, more than 600,000 people have benefited in 20 cities that now enjoy waste and wastewater disposal systems in line with EU standards.

Involving the people

The project is based on broad participation by local citizens. On the one hand, people are made aware that unregulated waste and wastewater treatment have a negative effect on the environment and on people’s health. The aim is to get people more engaged in separating waste and accepting the need for fees on water and waste. On the other hand, a further aim is to involve disadvantaged groups that earn a living from the informal collection of recyclable waste in municipal planning processes.

As at: 16/06/2023