Economic strengthening of the Prizren region
Title: Innovation and Training Park (ITP), Prizren
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Lead executing agency: Ministry of Finance (MoF)
Overall term: 2019 to 2022
Kosovo’s economy has made considerable progress in recent years. However, despite steady growth, the economy remains relatively unstable and relies on support and development assistance. Compared to other European countries, per-capita gross domestic product (GDP) is low. At the same time, Kosovo has a high unemployment rate and the average level of qualifications among the population is low. At present, not all demographic groups in Kosovo are guaranteed equal opportunities to participate in economic, social and cultural life.
The economic situation in Prizren, Kosovo’s second largest city, is similar. Although the tourism industry is growing, expansion in other economic sectors is slow. Microenterprises are prevalent, but so far they have provided minimal opportunities for employment. Furthermore, Prizren is in close competition with the capital, Pristina, and this has a negative impact on demographic and economic development in the region. However, the country as a whole would benefit from a second strong growth region to provide additional impetus.
Services and opportunities at the Innovation and Training Park (ITP) in Prizren support business development and company start-ups in the region.
The project is developing an innovation and training park in Prizren on the site of a former camp for the NATO peacekeeping force Kosovo Force (KFOR). The plan is for the park to house companies in ICT, the processing of agricultural products and foodstuffs, and from the cultural and creative industries. The site will also provide services and space for start-ups, and training facilities, which will primarily focus on vocational training. A further benefit is that the park will offer business support services. The project is developing the park’s organisational and operational structures, its management system and the advisory services required for businesses and training service providers. This also includes developing marketing and communication strategies for the park.