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Albania’s SMEs and the creation of state policies in their support

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In order to support and develop micro, small and medium enterprises (SMEs), the enterprise development fund was created, which is financed from the state budget and administered by the Albanian Investment Development Agency (AIDA).

The fund is used for awarding grants to SMEs, in order to implement programs aimed at increasing competitiveness, craftsmanship, the development of learning about the enterprise, the development of new products and services as a result of research and development, the development of enterprise skills , innovation, technology renewal, internationalization and development of SMEs and support of women entrepreneurs.

According to decision No. 540, dated 29.7.2022 of the Council of Ministers, the fund for the development of micro, small and medium enterprises, from the state budget for 2022, was in the amount/value of 105,000,000 ALL (one hundred and five million LEK) and has been met in the amount of 70,000,000 ALL (seventy million LEK) from current expenses and 35,000,000 ALL (thirty-five million LEK) from capital expenses of program 04130, “Support for economic development”, of the Ministry of Finance and Economy.

Which enterprises are considered SMEs in Albania?

Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises are the totality of enterprises in which less than 250 people are employed and realize a business figure or a total annual revenue not greater than 250 million ALL. The data on the number of employees and the turnover value are obtained from the annual financial statements filed for publication with the relevant authority where they are registered, in accordance with the legislation in force on accounting and financial statements.

Type of enterpriseNo. of employeesTotal Annual Turnover
Micro enterpriseless than 10 employeesnot greater than 10 million ALL
Small enterpriseless than 50 employeesnot greater than 50 million ALL
Medium enterprise50-249 employees50-250 million ALL

The general criteria for benefiting from budgetary financial support for SMEs are:

  • be natural or legal persons, registered in the commercial register, for no less than 12 months;
  • not be in bankruptcy process;
  • have regularly paid the mandatory health and social insurance;
  • not have obligations to the customs and tax authorities at the time of submission of the request for benefit from the fund;
  • to have submitted the statement in accordance with the provision given in Article 5 of this law.

Determination of the amount of benefit, criteria and special conditions of benefit for SMEs are defined every year by decision of the Council of Ministers.
The granting of state support to SMEs, regardless of the above definitions, can be based only on the fulfillment of the criterion of the number of personnel, in accordance with the provisions in force for state aid.
The forms of state support provided to micro, small and medium enterprises mainly include:

a) financial support from the state budget;
b) financial support from domestic or foreign development partners;
c) state loan guarantee in accordance with the legislation in force on state borrowing, state debt and state loan guarantees in the Republic of Albania, etc.;
d) public services for micro, small and medium enterprises.

Enterprises are also classified for statistical purposes based on the number of employees. The classification appears as in the table below:

Type of enterpriseNo. of employees
Micro enterpriseless than 10 employees
Small enterpriseless than 50 employees
Medium enterprise50-249 employees

Legal basis:

  • Law No. 43/2022 For the Development of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises
    • Instruction No. 24, dated 12.7.2022 On the Method of Data Calculation and the Declaration Model of the Category of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises
    • Decision No. 540, dated 29.7.2022 For the Determination of the Amount of Benefit, Criteria and Special Conditions of Benefit for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, for the year 2022

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AEcO Business Solutions

AEcO Business Solutions

AECO, is an initiative of Albanian experts in Tax, Accounting and Legal, who have committed to provide consulting services since the beginning of 2005, for those interested in business opportunities in Albania.

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