Municipal Competitive Index Equips Municipalities to Better Serve Kosovo Businesses & Citizens

Speeches Shim

Tuesday, October 13, 2020
Image of the MCI report 2018
Nazmije Bajrami

Municipal leadership across Kosovo have expressed their eagerness to improve the daily lives of their citizens through their interactions with the private sector.  During a virtual gathering on September 14, USAID’s partner Riinvest presented the 2020 Municipal Competitive Index to Kosovo’s mayors and local government officials.  This index responds to the demand from mayors and local officials to learn whether their policies are effective and serve the citizens and businesses in their communities.

For the third year in a row, the top performing municipality is Lipjan, which has a population of just 58,000.  Larger municipalities face a unique set of challenges due to their size and greater demands from their constituents.  In larger municipalities, there is typically an additional layer of central administration that increases the bureaucratic burden for businesses.  Despite these additional challenges, many large municipalities performed well on the index.

The index noted significant improvements in the transparency sub-index and the labor and business support services sub-index.  The municipal administration sub-index that looks at the municipal officials’ capabilities and attitudes toward businesses and fairness in public tendering performed the worst.  Some of the rankings also indicated a need for better information sharing and communication between the local government and the private sector in respective municipalities, while several smaller municipalities performed well in this regard.

USAID/Kosovo’s Program and Policy Office Director, Alison Case, remarked, “This commitment from municipal leadership is critical for success.  But, it is not about the rankings; it is about how you will use these data to improve the lives of Kosovo’s citizens.”  Mayors and municipal leadership expressed their willingness to share lessons learned, and will follow up on the meeting by consulting with the private sector.

USAID’s local government partners play a vital role in building the kind of business-friendly environment that attracts investment, creates jobs, and fosters prosperity.  The USAID-funded Municipal Competitiveness Index is a useful tool for Kosovo municipalities to hold themselves accountable and for Kosovo citizens to hold municipal leadership accountable.