Dear Friends, 

On February 8, 2024, the Parliament will vote on a Project Law on Amendments to the Public Procurement Law No. 162/2020 during a plenary session. 

The AIS organization, known as Open Data Albania, has previously participated in the Public Consultation process of the Albanian Government for this Project Law (June-September 2023). Link

Being familiar with the project of the law, currently under review in the Parliamentary Committees this week, AIS expresses strong concern regarding two aspects of the project legislation: 

  1. Article 48, point 2, makes the law highly susceptible to corruption and introduces the potential for contracts with a risk of abuse. Consequently, this article contradicts the Stabilization Association Agreement, specifically Article 74. 
  1. The Project Law, initiated by the Albanian Government, envisions interventions for an Integrated Electronic System for Public Procurement. However, the accompanying Explanatory Report to the Project Law has not anticipated the financial costs of the intervention. The Parliament cannot approve a law without accurate financial forecasts from the Government (Ministry of Finance). 

Therefore, AIS has submitted a written request to the Parliament, urging the removal of Article 48, point 2, from the Project Law. According to our analysis for corruption-proofing of legislation, this article poses a high risk. 

Content of Article 48, Transitional Provisions, point 2: Within a period of 3 years from the entry into force of this law, the Council of Ministers may authorize state/public administration institutions at the central level to negotiate and conclude international consultancy agreements within the scope of their competence, pertaining to areas of strategic interest, including the application of artificial intelligence, cyber security, critical infrastructure, and the fight against organized crime and corruption. 

Additionally, this Project Law should not proceed to the Plenary Session on February 8 without being accompanied by a detailed Explanatory Report from the Ministry of Finance regarding financial costs. Furthermore, a thorough examination of the issues conflicting with the SAA should be conducted in advance. 

It is recommended to the Parliament that, prior the Final Review during the Session, it initiates and seeks a Consultative Meeting with organizations serving as Business Associations, as well as those engaged in the areas of the Rule of Law, European Integration, and Transparency. 

Please find attached the letter from the AIS Organization addressed to the Parliament (and respective committees). 

Opposure. Draft Law on Amendments to the Public Procurement Law

Best regards, 

Aranita BRAHAJ 

Director of AIS / Open Data Albania