There has been many years now, since Albanian Smallholders Families have found a dedicated local financial partner, SCA FED Invest, which only recently was offered support from the Japanese International Cooperation Agency/JICA.
Tirana, February 2nd 2018
SCA FED invest in cooperation with the Japanese International Cooperation Agency/JICA, have launched today in "Tirana International Hotel" premises, a four year project on "Smallholders’ Families Financial Inclusion in Albania", aiming rural and semi-urban areas financial inclusion by providing financial and technological knowledge support, market information, product & marketing prices, as well as recognizing the best international practices in Agribusiness.
Among the participants were the Minister of Finances, Ambassador of Japan to Albania, the Resident Representative of JICA Balkan Office, Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Bank of Albania Directors, Secretary General of the Albanian Association of Banks, representatives of EFSE DF, EBRD, representatives of Insurance Associations, other Micro-finance actors, SCA FED invest executives and members, Agribusiness significant representatives, etc.
This project aims to be one of the instruments in support of the Government of Albania objectives to improve citizens’life through a comprehensive quality economic growth and to create an efficient, innovative and sustainable agri-food sector, employment, social inclusion and better life quality for residents of these areas.
As it was emphasized by Mrs. Konini: " FED Invest Inclusion in such project does not only highlight the values of the institution in these 25 years legacy and support of the rural population, but it also acts as an important promoter in providing a wide range of products and financial services, through a modern banking technology, to empower smallholders’development and improve their life quality. At the end of this project we intend to establish an accessible financial institution for all, regardless of geographical distance or financial barriers; providing user-friendly, transparent, valuable and affordable products and services.
FED invest was founded in 1992 as a pilot project of World Bank to alleviate poverty in Albania. This project success was followed by other projects, which marked various stages of institutional transformation, introducing the need for a specific legal regulatory framework, such as the Law on Credit and Savings Associations and their Unions.
During 2015, with the support of the World Bank and Bank of Albania, started the consolidation process of SCA Associations in FED invest, which represents a more efficient structure with greater financial capacity to serve its membership, predominantly farmers. World Bank considered such consolidation a success story in its Global Financial Development in 2017/2018 publication.
FED Invest is currently the largest financial cooperative in Albania with over 51,600 members, with a deposit portfolio of 3.463 billion ALL, and loan portfolio of 3.447 billion ALL, with an expanding activity in rural (1,500 villages) and urban areas. Upon consolidation till the end of this year, the results achieved are quite optimistic: FED invest loan portfolio has increased by 25.5%, deposit portfolio by 43% and the number of members by 49%.
JICA - Japanese International Cooperation Agency helps and supports developing countries as well as transition economies, as the implementing agency of Official Development Assistance in Japan (ODA). In line with its vision of "Comprehensive and Dynamic Development" JICA supports solving problems in developing countries by implementing the most appropriate instruments through a variety of assistance methods, combining an orientation approach, both regional and national as well as and toward the problem. JICA, the largest bilateral aid agency in the world, is tasked with the integrated administration of Official Development Assistance (ODA) through technical cooperation and loans for GRANT development assistance. It has around 100 offices worldwide that promote projects in response to local needs in over 150 countries.