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Focus on Albanian Ministry of Culture / Abi Bank

Albania’s 100 Villages revitalization project

Four ministries in Albania’s government are working together to spearhead a rural economic rejuvenation project in 100 villages across the country, designed to boost rural tourism and incentivize citizens to develop industries such as agriculture and handicrafts

An ambitious rural renaissance program spearheaded by the Albanian Ministry of Culture is set to help lift rural economies by developing 100 villages based on their tourism potential. The project will make infrastructural investments to transform the villages, building development and investment networks in agritourism and ecotourism whilst boosting rural economic development around each of the historical sites.

Agritourism and ecotourism investments, with major contributions from entrepreneurial partners, will make use of the villages’ cultural and surrounding natural heritage, traditions, and local capacities. The new conditions of the villages will be designed to help inhabitants maintain and improve livelihoods in their home villages, not only through marketing agricultural products, but also through boosting agricultural and livestock-based tourism development and promoting traditional craftsmanship.

The project will spur on rural economic development and agritourism across Albania

“This rural renaissance will bring opportunities for better infrastructure, particularly related to roads and village squares, as well as diversifying economic activities, generating more social capital, and creating jobs for young people in their own villages, as well as for craftspeople,” said Minister of Culture Elva Margariti.

The eventual plan is for municipalities of the villages to receive the adequate incentives – like infrastructure development, and cultural heritage preservation and promotion – for their citizens to choose to pursue livelihoods there, instead of migrating to cities for work.

“Albania’s history, folklore and gastronomy are rich and fascinating. ABI Bank is thrilled to be part of the 100 Villages project, which will revitalize many of the places that shaped Albanian history and expose their tourist potential. It will have a meaningful and lasting impact on Albania’s development,” said Andi Ballta, CEO of project partner ABI Bank.