Open Data Albania has investigated into the Unconditional Transfers allocated to eleven Beneficiary Municipalities from the Reconstruction Program Fund, focusing on the Unconditional Transfers approved by Decisions of the Council of Ministers (DCM) during the Electoral Campaign Period 25 March until 25 April 2021. The analysis looked also at pre-election dates from 1 January to 25 April 2021
- The budget transfer for eleven municipalities from the Reconstruction Fund for the period 1 January to 25 April 2021 is 15 430 836 420 Lek (fifteen billion four hundred thirty million eight hundred and thirty-six thousand four hundred and twenty ALL). In Euro, it is about 124.44 Million Euro.
- Only on 30 Electoral Campaign Dates, this Unconditional Transfer to municipalities affected by the earthquake marked 8 574 636 507 Lek (eight billion five hundred seventy-four million six hundred and six hundred thirty-six thousand five hundred and seven ALL). In Euro, it is about 69.1 Million Euro.
- In the first four months, the Albanian Government spent from the Reconstruction Fund transferring to municipalities as Unconditional Transfers 56% of the total Annual Reconstruction Fund. A significant part of the transfers went directly to Individual beneficiaries.
- In 2020, the Albanian Government was criticized by the International Monetary Fund IMF because of the failure to implement this Fund, the Reconstruction Program.
- In the Law on the State Budget at the beginning of the year, in total, the Unconditional transfers for these 11 Municipalities were 8 299 271 265 ALL. For the same 11 municipalities, the additional Unconditional Transfers through DCMs in the four months before the elections marks 15 430 836 420 ALL. The increase is 186 percent.
- The municipalities of Tirana; Durres; Kurbin and Kamëz have the highest increase. Compared with the Unconditional Transfers provided for in the Law at the Beginning of the Year, records were set by municipalities: Vora (549%); Kurbin (340%); Tirana (250%); Shijaku (228%).
Municipality of Tirana. By decision of the Council of the Ministers has benefited the amount 6 055 001 800 ALL (six billion and fifty-five million and one thousand Eighty ALL) as Unconditional Transfers on Electoral Dates (30 days of the campaign). These transfers are ordered by DCM No. 189 of 25 March; DCM No. 202 of 25 March; DCM No. 204 of 25 March.
Municipality of Durres By decision of the Council of the Ministers has benefited the 1 181 590 365 ALL (one billion one hundred and eighty-one million five hundred and ninety thousand three hundred and sixty-five ALL) as Unconditional Transfers on Electoral Dates (30 days of the campaign). DCM No. 189 of 25 March; DCM No. 201 of 25 March; DCM No. 205 of 24 March and DCM No. 213 of 31 March.
Municipality of Kamëz By Decisions of the Council of Ministers, this municipality has benefitted 227 909 231 Lek (two hundred twenty-seven thousand nine hundred and nine thousand two hundred and thirty-one ALL. DCM No. 200 dated March 25; DCM No. 201 dated March 31; DCM No. 211 dated March 31, and DCM No. 235 dated April 14.
Municipality of Kurbin. By Decisions of the Council of Ministers benefited Lek 529 262 087 (Five hundred twenty-nine million two hundred sixty-two thousand eighty-seven ALL. By DCM No. 215 dated 31 March; DCM No. 233 dated 14 April and Decision 234 dated 14 April.
Municipality of Shijak Has benefited 143 662 566 ALL during the Electoral Period. DCM No. 212 dated March 31 was taken during this period.
Municipality of Vora. By decision of the Council of Ministers it benefited 175 148 070 ALL (one hundred and seventy-five million and one hundred and forty-eight thousand and seventy ALL). Decision of the Council of Ministers No. 189 dated March 25; DCM No. 236 dated April 14 and DCM No.237 dated April 14.
Municipality of Kavaja. During the election period, this municipality benefitted Unconditional Transfers in the amount of 201 959 863 ALL (two hundred and one million nine hundred and fifty-nine million eight hundred and six seventy-three ALL). This was done through DCM No. 206 dated March 25 and DCM No. 205 dated March 25.
Municipality of Rrogozhina and Municipality of Kruja did not receive funds on election dates. DCMs for Unconditional Transfers from the Reconstruction Fund were taken at earlier dates.
Municipality of Lezha. This municipality has benefited by Decision of the Council of Ministers transfers amounting to 17 835 093 Lek (seventeen million eight hundred thirty-five thousand ninety-three ALL. DCM No. 215 Date March 31, 2021.
Typical Unconditional Transfers are funds from the State Budget for Municipalities for guaranteeing some basic services of the Local Government such as basic education, social protection, management of forests, roads, waters, etc. The unconditional transfer is determined through a formula every year and is adopted as a separate table and item of the Law on State Budget. If we compare certain additional transfers allocated in December 2020 with the additional funds received by Municipalities as Unconditional Transfers from the Reconstruction Fund through DCMs before elections and DCMs taken on election dates, we see a concentration on the dates which the Electoral Code recognizes as the electoral campaign dates.
This article was produced in the framework of monitoring, transparency and risk assessment in the distribution of Albanian taxpayers’ money and expenditures, FollowtheMoney.al. AIS organization is implementing the Open Data, Access and Transparency over sectors to Risk of Corruption.
Other articles and electoral data from Open Data Albania can be found by clicking Themes Electoral Processes.