Starting from 2017, a new coastal community has joined the Mediterranean network set up through NEMO project, which is financed by the Italian Cooperation and carried out by CIHEAM Bari. It is the Porto Palermo community in Albania.

Italy has opened dialogue with the local competent institutions, and the Albanian Agency for the Management of Protected Areas has already joined the ongoing development program. A new assistance program in support of the sustainable fishery sector follows the activities for protection and enhancement of the environmental heritage supported by the Italian Cooperation in Albania. The proposed plan is aimed at driving development for more vulnerable groups of society, and strengthening the idea of a common future for the Mediterranean based on respect for natural resources and the value of the person.

The envisaged actions and those in the start-up phase focus on the analysis of typical regional products, on training to develop local skills, and on innovation of the production chain. These are priority issues for the economic growth of Porto Palermo, in line with the Albanian government’s course of action and the NEMO project objectives.

The administrative reform, approved last year, has reduced the number of Municipalities in Albania and has enhanced the voice of local realities. Moreover, the government intends to relaunch tourism in coastal areas. Italy shares this route and supports the healthy desire for local communities to take a leading role. It is alongside national institutions in carrying out an integrated aid plan, ranging from innovation in the agri-food sector to a wider range of services.

In the participatory cooperation launched with NEMO project, Porto Palermo sows new seeds of stability and development for the Mediterranean.