The Albanian approach to municipal borrowing: From centralized control to market discipline
Local governments (LGs) in transitional countries face pressing infrastructure needs, which, given the severe shortcomings of traditional funding, make a strong case for debt financing. This article explores the case study of Albania, using document analysis and interviews with mayors, civil servants, citizens and investors. We go beyond an analysis of technical aspects (macroeconomic conditions and legal constraints on borrowing) to include ‘soft’ elements (political and managerial issues, attitudes of key actors), with the aim of highlighting the approach adopted under current policies and the approach that should be adopted. Favorable macroeconomic conditions and the completeness of the legal framework have motivated policy‐makers to choose the market model. Their aim is to develop the financial market rapidly; however, the development of sound management systems at the local level is largely ignored. We argue that the role of managerial capacities, public accountability and professional mechanisms is not adequately taken into account. Future policies need to make the best use of some early experiences of public participation and build upon the extensive training in accounting and auditing issues provided to local civil servants in order to exploit other models of municipal borrowing control. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Volume (Year): 30 (2010)
Issue (Month): 5 (December)
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