Southeast European Business & Economic Forum Examining the Future of PPPs in the Region

Tirana, Albania, Autumn 2012


At a moment of pan-European economic stasis there is a compelling need for exploring new growth opportunities in South East Europe (SEE). The region is in the middle of the process of reconstruction and privatization. It has a strategically important position being at the crossroads of regional cultures, trade and energy security.

The financial crises of 2009 has had an effect in the region’s economy and the ongoing Eurozone crisis is likely to further have an impact in the region as a whole. However, the increasing regional cooperation and the huge potential that SEE offers through well-structured public-private partnerships (PPPs) opportunities could further boost economic growth and foreign direct investment. The European Commission has placed emphasis on the need to accelerate investment in infrastructure, by mobilising public and private sector finance through PPP arrangements as part of a strategy to address the economic downturn. In its communication paper the Commission emphasises that “Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) can provide effective ways to deliver infrastructure projects, to provide public services and to innovate more widely in the context of these recovery efforts. At the same time, PPPs are interesting vehicles for the long-term structural development of infrastructures and services, bringing together distinct advantages of the private sector and the public sector, respectively”.


Project aims


The Forum will focus on the promotion and enhancement of public-private partnerships as well as an effective management of public sector enterprises in the SEE/Balkans.


Informed by business, academic and institutional expertise already operating and/or interested in SEE the Forum will aim to provide constructive input on the privatisation of public enterprises, effective management of public sector companies and the enhancement of public-private partnerships. It aims to be both inclusive, in that it will include representatives from various countries, institutions and sectors, and thematically comprehensive - covering various aspects of business and economic opportunities. Additionally, the forum will facilitate information exchange and contacts between prospective EU investors and Western Balkans stakeholders - maximising in particular opportunities and relationships between private and public companies.


Jointly organised by IBDE and ICPE (and possibly DG Enlargement) it would thus aim to:


  • Bring together a wide range of Western Balkans and EU officials, businesspeople and economists from participating countries and institutions, with experts from academia
  • Analyse business best practice and effective management of public companies
  • Promote public-private partnerships opportunities in infrastructure: i.e. the, tourism, technology, construction, environment, agricultural sectors, education, and other relevant business services industry
  • Produce tangible intellectual outputs e.g. a report that could serve as a basis for future discussion and informed policymaking as well as laying the foundations for an Action Plan for business, governments and other stakeholders




In order to allow for multilateral and in-depth discussion, the Conference is envisaged as a high-profile forum setting with up to 60 participants joining a large round table set-up, and another 60 to sit in on the proceedings. Alternatively, there could be two theatre style consecutive panels followed by Q & A session (with up to 200 participants).


Held in Tirana, the event will consist of four sessions. Each session will be introduced by three 10 min input papers given by Western Balkans/EU policymakers and two invited speakers with particular expertise in this field which will be followed by structured discussion among representatives of different EU and other institutions, experts and companies.



The Western Balkans countries plus Slovenia and Turkey will participate in and contribute to the Conference. The EU partners would be invited to participate at the Conference.


The European Commission, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, European Investment Bank will be invited to participate in and contribute to the Conference.


Business leaders already operating or interested to invest in the region will be invited to participate in and contribute to the Conference. Experts will also be invited to participate and contribute to the Forum.


The following international organizations and institutions will be invited to participate to the Conference: Adriatic Ionian Initiative, Regional Co-operation Council, Islamic Development Bank, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Organization of the Black Sea Economic Co-operation, World Bank, United Nations Development Programme, OSCE, and United Nations Economic Commission for Europe. Other countries and organizations may be invited by the organisers.


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International Center for Promotion of Enterprises - ICPE
Dunajska 104, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia

Ph.: +386 1 568 23 31
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