National planning and budgeting
The Albanian government has embarked on reforms over the past few years to improve legal, policy and institutional gender equality mechanisms. The National Strategy and Action Plan on Gender Equality 2016-2020 provides a strong gender equality vision, though financial and human resources to ensure the proper implementation are currently insufficient.
National plans and budgets are strategic opportunities for governments to turn their commitments into practical steps for achieving gender equality. More often than not, they fail to ensure public services’ response to women’s needs and priorities. Fulfillment of commitments to gender equality requires innovative public policy tools like gender-responsive budgeting, which comprehensively assesses gender gaps and identifies actions to close them.
Gender Responsive Budgeting (GRB) has been identified as an important tool for advancing gender equality in key national documents. In this regard, Albania has taken important steps towards officially embracing gender responsive budgeting at central and local level.
UN Women in Albania is working to place gender equality at the center of planning and budgeting for national development and EU integration. We advocate for transparent and adequate public financing for gender equality, including gender-responsive budgets that channel adequate resources to both women and men. As a result, gender equality is now a core principle in the Law on Organic Budget (since 2016). In addition, the approval of law "On Local Government Finances”, paved the way for GRB effective inclusion in budget programming, monitoring, reporting and evaluation.
UN Women has provided support to national and local institutions over the past years in mainstreaming gender in policy planning and budgeting. On the one hand, we implemented initiatives to enhance their capacities in analyzing, designing and executing gender-responsive plans and budgets, while on the other we provided the right tools and capacities to key institutions to track budget allocations and expenditure from a gender respective.
Boosting all relevant partners’ capacities, including civil society’s, has been key to strengthen planning, monitoring and evaluating abilities from a gender perspective.