At the end of September 2016 the Embassy of Finland took part in four project board meetings of Finnish-supported projects - Diaspora Engagement for Economic Development, Aid for Trade, UN Joint Program on Domestic Violence in Kosovo and Active Labour Market Programmes. With an experience of more than 15 years in the country, the Government of Finland is supporting Kosovo particularly in areas of gender equality, economic growth and employment creation.
Diaspora Engagement for Economic Development aims to harness the vast economic potential of diaspora Kosovars. By investing in Kosovo rather than just sending remittances, diaspora Kosovars can create jobs and sustainable income to their fellow countrymen.
Aid for Trade's focus has been to help decrease the trade deficit of Kosovo, increase its local production and alleviate poverty. It has done so by strengthening the capacities of the Ministry of Trade and Industry and by offering tangible support to farmers and local businesses.
The main objective of UN Joint Program on Domestic Violence in Kosovo is to develop local capacities to effectively address cases of domestic violence and contribute to creation of coordination mechanisms involving institutional and civil society actors. The project has also worked on supporting the economic independence of domestic violence and gender-based violence survivors and on raising awareness about the harmful effects of domestic violence.
Active Labour Market Programmes, just like the other Finnish-supported development interventions, combines practical grass-root work with structural capacity building. The project includes job-creating measures as well as measures that focus on strengthening the capacity of labour market institutions.
All of these projects are working towards the same goal: prosperous, safe and equal Kosovo. Finland's focus in all its activities is to support the vulnerable groups: women, children, youth, rural communities and ethnic minorities. Coordination and synergy are the cornerstones in Finland's development interventions, which is why all these projects work together. The fight against domestic violence, encouraging the diaspora to invest more in their home country and activating the labour market all aim at empowering those who are poor and excluded.
Since 2015, the Finnish support has been extended to the four northern municipalities of Kosovo. It is important for Finland to be active in the whole territory of the country and provide assistance to all municipalities.
During her speeches at the board meetings, the Ambassador of Finland, Mrs. Anne Huhtamäki, thanked the Kosovo Ministries, UNDP and other UN Agencies and all the project teams for their hard work and active engagement in the projects.