Team

Secretariat’s team is recruited through a transparent and competitive procedure by the EBRD, respecting professional standards of work. The number of Secretariat’s employees is decided by the EBRD.

Dr. Diana Leka – Head of Secretariat

Dr Diana Leka is an expert with a long experience in trade and foreign direct investment. She has worked for over 20 years in the public and private sector as well as in projects (EU, IFC, UNDP, GIZ) focused in the areas of regional trade, FDIs, public advocacy on business competitiveness, SMEs and exports, monitoring of public policies etc. She is a licensed auditor from Moody International (2005) and a licensed European Manager of QMS from the German Institute of Quality. As an independent consultant, she delivered consultancy services in setting up quality management system (ISO, HACCP) to private and public companies as well as independent EU Evaluator contracted by EUD in Albania in relation to the evaluation of the offers for IPA 2007 on supporting SMEs to become more competitive in the EU market. She has published several articles in the Albanian print media on issues related to the investment climate in the country, including challenges of the Albanian companies while integrating into the EU and regional markets, as well as incentives to investment in Albania, compared to the region. She has been the national coordinator of the Albanian Investment Report (UNDP/UNCTAD, BoA, INSTAT, etc) for 2010 and 2011.

Ms.  Leka holds a university degree in Economy from the University of Tirana, a Master Degree in Economy and Financial Management from the University of Aix – Marseille No. 2, France, and a PhD Degree on the “Challenges of Albanian companies in the process of EU integration” from the University of Tirana. In addition, since 1998, she has delivered lectures on Operation Management, Quality Management at public and private universities in Albania.

Following her recent experience as Adviser to the Minister of Finances 2013-2014, Ms.  Leka joined the IC Secretariat as Director, leading the work on the identification of the main impediments to investment in key sectors of the economy, facilitating the consultation process with the private sector in the elaboration of main obstacles and relevant recommendations of doing business and organizing the work of the Investment Council.

Elvis Zerva Legal & Regulatory Expert

Mr Elvis Zerva joined the Secretariat in 2015 after 10 years of relevant experience in the private sector between banking and electronic communications. Areas of expertise cover legal & regulatory in banking, electronic communications, tax & customs and business and investment legislation.

Mr Zerva is responsible for identifying legal and institutional aspects that impede the development of the private and public sector, in the frame of the investment climate in Albania. He provides detailed analyses and practical recommendations on legal and regulatory changes that aim to foster investment and improve the business climate in the country.

Mr Zerva holds a Bachelor Degree in Law and Master in European and Constitutional Comparative Right, from the University of Tirana, while he is pursuing advanced studies for a Master in European Competition Law from the University of London. Mr Zerva is a member of the National Bar Association since 2008 and he holds several qualifications from national and international institutions in Justice, American Government: Constitutional Foundations, Anti-Corruption Compliance Programs and Conflict of Interests.

Elisa Lula – Administrative and Communications Officer

Ms Elisa Lula has a 6-year work experience (2003 – 2009) in the private sector, followed by a 5-year work experience (2009 – 2014) in the administration of international projects (EU-IPA, GIZ) with a focus on innovation, SME competitiveness and entrepreneurship. She holds a B.A. in Foreign Languages from the University of Tirana (2003), and an MBA degree with a major in Entrepreneurship from Regent University, USA (2015).

 

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Previous Consultants
Mimoza Agolli – Economic Expert (part-time), July 2018 – December 2018

Ms Mimoza Agolli joined the Secretariat of Investment Council on a short-term assignment as an Economic Expert. She has extensive experience as a consultant /researcher on economic issues, with a focus on welfare and distributional impact of public policies including fiscal policies, education and employment. She is an excellent connoisseur of national statistics and possesses expertise in using quantitative tools, econometric and computational ones, in research and policy analyses. She has been providing her expertise for the public sector, private banking institutions, NGOs and international organisations on numerous assignments. Ms Mimoza Agolli holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economy and Finance, with minor in Tourism Management from University “F. S. Noli”, in Korçë. She pursued graduate studies in Applied Economics and Management Sciences, in Greece at Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Chania (MAICH/CHIEAM). She is currently completing her research work as part of PhD studies in Quantitative Economics, Faculty of Economics (CAU, Germany).

Ermelinda Xhaja – Economic Expert (full time), July 2015 – December 2017

Ms. Ermelinda Xhaja joined the Secretariat after a seven-year experience in the OSCE Presence in Albania as National Programme Officer for Economy and Anti-corruption. She has previous six-year experience in the Albanian Ministry of Economy dealing with strategic programming and donor coordination. Additionally, Ms. Xhaja has an academic background as an assistant professor in various economic courses in Tirana and Vlora University. She holds a university degree in Business Management and a Master Degree in Economy from the University of  Tirana. Currently, she is a PhD Candidate at the Faculty of Economy of the University of Tirana. As Economic Expert in the Secretariat, Ms. Xhaja was responsible for reviewing and identifying economic and business implications of the current legal and institutional framework with a focus on private sector concerns, providing detailed analyses and practical recommendations on improving the business climate and in general fostering investments in Albania.

Investment Council is supported by the Ministry of Finance and Economy, the EBRD and the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO)