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Friday, March 5, 2021
Public information is key to the legalization process
Chemonics Int for USAIDKosovo

In Kosovo, there are around 350,000 unpermitted constructions, which cannot be used as collateral for further investments.   Efforts to legalize these unpermitted constructions is crucial for formalizing property rights, improving access to finance, and supporting economic recovery and economic growth.  USAID, through the Economic Governance Activity, partnered with the municipalities of Pristina and Gracanica to launch an extensive outreach campaign to encourage citizens to legalize unpermitted buildings.  The campaign engaged local community leaders and influencers to share information on how to apply, and to highlight both the low costs and the benefits of doing so.

Incorporating local community leaders and influencers for reaching out to citizens was an important dimension of the outreach campaign.  Convincing citizens in Kosovo often requires efforts on the ground, beyond the official structures in Kosovo.  Simultaneously, USAID worked with the municipalities to simplify the procedures for registering unpermitted buildings and built the capacity of local leaders to administer the legalization program.  USAID also supported the efforts of partner municipalities to update their websites with application forms ready for downloading, thus providing citizens with easily accessible information.  

The partner municipalities, with USAID’s assistance, began issuing the first legalization decisions in May 2020.  To date, Kosovo citizens have registered buildings valued at €70-90 million in the two partner municipalities, which is a drastic uptick from €40-50 million at the end November.  USAID’s Economic Governance Activity supports Kosovo in implementing significant reforms that improve the efficiency of government operations, strengthen public financial management, and build self-reliant systems for reforms that address citizens’ needs.

Last updated: April 12, 2021

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