Central and Local Government Relations in Albania: Toward Decentralization

Endri Pajollari, Salih zcan


Local governance and decentralization is an ever growing topic in politics and public administration studies. This is better achieved by a good relationship between the local and central governments. A coordinated relation between these two important institutions provides prosperity and stability for a country.
This paper aims to describe the notion of central-local governments relations, based on decentralization. It begins by briefly presenting the theoretical aspects of the abovementioned concepts of central-local relations and decentralization.
The paper first gives an overview of these concepts in the Republic of Albania, by describing the situation in different periods and different regimes. The aim of this study is to show how the central-local relations have evolved during the years in Albania and how much this relation has been concerned with decentralization and local self-governance.
This study provides different competencies and budget capacity of both levels of
government and gives examples from different developed countries in order to show how the system works in reality in Albania and how they should function in order to be more effective and efficient.
Finally this study presents some of the problems that the local government institutions are facing in Albania, with the main issue being corruption in all levels of public administration and possible solutions for these problems will be suggested.
Keywords: Albania, Central-local relations, Decentralization, Local government,

Full Text:



Aktar, C. (2015, January 07). Decentralization in The Region; Centralization in

Turkey. Retrieved June 20, 2015, from Todays Zaman: http://www.todayszaman.



Anderson, J. (2003). Decentralization, Local Powers and Local Development.

Gothenburg: United Nations Global Forum on Innovative Policies and Practices

in Local Governance. Retrieved June 20, 2015 from http://hdrnet.org/487/1/


Bin, H. (2012). Distribution of Powers between Central Governments and

Sub-national Governments. New York. Committee of Experts on Public


Bogdani, M., & Loughlin, J. (2007). Local Government and Decentralization. In

Albania and the European Union (pp. 195-206). London: I.B Tauris.

Bufi, Y. (2013, December 26). A Comprehensive Approach to the Territorial Reform.

Tirana, Albania.

Democratic Party Parliamentary Group. (2014). Territorial-Administrative

Reform. Tirana: Constitutional Court.

European Commission (2012). Albania Progress Report 2012. Brussels: European


European Commission (2013). Albania Progress Report 2013. Brussels: European


European Commission (2014). Albania Progress Report 2014. Brussels: European


Government of Albania (2005). Government Program: 2005-2009. Tirana:

Council of Ministers.

Government of Albania (2009). Government Program: 2009-2013. Tirana:

Council of Ministers.

Guney, A., & Celenk, A. Aslihan (2010). Europeanization and the dilemma of

decentralization: centrelocal relations in Turkey. Journal of Balkan and Near

Eastern Studies, Volume 12 (3), pp.241-257.

Heywood, A. (2013). Politics 4th Edition. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

Hodaj, F. (2001). Strengthening the European Tendencies of Development in Local

Self-Government in South-Eastern Europe. Tirana: Albanian Association of


Hoxha, A. (2002). Local self-government and decentralization: Case of Albania:

History, Reforms and Challenges. Tirana: Institute for Contemporary Studies.

Hoxha, A., & Gurraj, A. (2001). Local Self-Government and Decentralization:

Case of Albania. History, Reformes and Challenges. Tirana.

IDRA. (2005). State of the Art Decentralization in Albania. Tirana: Institute for

Development Research and Alternatives.

John, P. (2001). From Local Government to Local Governance in I. Holliday

(Ed.), Local Governance in Western Europe (pp. 1-25). London: Sage Publications.

Marshall, G. C. (2001). Federalism and Decentralization. Perspectives for the

Transformation Process in Eastern and Central Europe. Verlag: European Center

for Security Studies.

Martinez-Vazquez, J. (2011). The Impact of Fiscal Decentralization:

Issues in Theory and Challenges in Practice. Mandaluyong City: Asian

Development Bank.

Ministry of State on Local Issues (2014, June 12). Administrative-Territorial

Reform. Retrieved August 15, 2015, from Reforma Administrative Territoriale

Web Site: http://www.reformaterritoriale.al/en/

Oates, W. E. (1999). An Essay on Fiscal Federalism. Journal of Economic

Literature, Vol. XXXVII, 11201149.

Oates, W. E. (2006). On the Theory and Practice of Fiscal Decentralization.

Maryland: Institute for Federalism and Intergovernmental Relations.

zcan, S., & Shehu, D. (2014). The Role of Political Party Identity in Central and

Local Government Relations in Albania. European Journal of Social Sciences, Vol

, No.2, pp.165-174.

Parliament of Albania (1992). Organization and Fuctioning of Local Authority.

Tirana: Official Gazette.

Pejanovic, M. (2010). Local Self-Government: A Must for Democracy, Civil

Society and EU Integration. Berlin: Berghof Publications.

Rhodes, R. A. (1986). Corporate Bias in Central-Local Relations:

A Case Study of the Consultative Council on Local Government

Finance. Policy and Politics, pp. 221-245.

Saito, F. (2008). Decentralization and Local Governance in F. Saito (Ed.)

Foundations for Local Governance: Decentralization in Comparative Perspective.

(pp. 1-24). Seta, Otsu: Physica-Verlag.

Shah, A., & Shah, S. (2006). The New Vision of Local Governance and the

Evolving Roles of Local Governments. Washington D.C: The World Bank.

Stewart, J. (2000). The Nature of British Local Government. Basingstoke &

London: Macmillan Press Ltd.

Stewart, J. (2003). Modernising British Local Government. Basingstoke & New

York: Palgrave Macmillan.

Tzimas, S. (2013, February 20). State turns its back on ethnic Greeks

in southern Albania, ekathimerini. Retrieved June 20, 2015, from

ekathimerini Web site: http://www.ekathimerini.com/4dcgi/_w_articles_


White, S. (2011). Government Decentralization in the 21st Century. Washington

D.C: Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Comments on this article

View all comments