Disputes between public administration institutions and businesses bear considerable costs for both parties and, at the same time, cause uncertainties and lack of trust for domestic and foreign businesses. Therefore it is necessary a quick, efficient and fair resolution of such disputes remains indispensable for encouraging investments in the country. In Albania, disputes can be resolved in the administrative stage via administrative appeal or through litigation.
Entities are obliged to administratively pursuit an administrative appeal, before addressing it to courts, only if the substantive law regulating the respective administrative activity explicitly states that against the administrative act, administrative appeal may be exercised, it determines the concrete administrative body or bodies to which eventually the administrative appeal is addressed, according to the hierarchy.
Substantive laws (i.e. laws on tax, customs and procurement etc.) stipulate the concrete modalities on the deadlines, conditions, and procedures to abide by in order to make the administrative appeal admissible for review on the merits, the review procedures, and the nature of the decision by the administrative body. Final decision of the administration can be further appealed before the administrative courts.
Administrative courts were established with the Law No. 49/2012 “On the organization and functioning of administrative courts and administrative disputes”. The law defines the organization and functioning of the administrative courts, and the status of judges who serve in them; jurisdiction and competence of administrative courts; principles and procedure of the trial, the parties in the process and other administrative trial; administrative court decisions and their execution. The competent courts for review of administrative disputes (litigation), are the Administrative Courts of the First Instance, Administrative Court of Appeal and the Administrative Body of the High Court. Currently in Albania, operates six (6) Administrative Court of First Instance in Durres, Gjirokastra, Shkodra, Tirana and Vlora and Administrative Court of Appeal.
Arbitration and Mediation are alternative dispute resolutions (ADR) means. Settlement of disputes through mediation or national arbitration it is not widespread in Albania. For resolution of dispute resolution, parties usually use litigation in Courts.
What has been done:
The Secretariat prepared in close cooperation with many stakeholders (business associations, chambers and public institutions), a paper on the improvement of dispute resolution mechanisms between the business and public administration. A fast, efficient and fair resolution of such disputes remains indispensable for encouraging investments in the country. This was the object of discussion in the Investment Council Meeting held on 2 March 2016. For more information on the Meeting materials, please visit here.