The UNDP Kosovo Programme Action Plan 2011- 2015 (KPAP) aims to assist Kosovo with its development agenda (as defined by the EPAP, the Economic Vision and the MTEF), focusing on social inclusion and human development for all. The KPAP is based on the UN Kosovo Team Common Development Plan for 2011-2015 (approved in March 2011) and will directly contribute to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals for Kosovo. UNDP-supported interventions are aligned with the on-going initiatives of the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).
UNDP will contribute to Kosovo’s priorities and development of capacities of various partners through three programme components:
UNDP offers comparative advantages in these areas, drawing on its global knowledge base, best practices, lessons learnt, and past cooperation. Efforts will continue to reinforce mainstreaming gender equality and women empowerment across the programme and greater attention will be devoted to embedding a more coherent strategy for civil society engagement and research-based programming across all development interventions.
While economic growth is critically important for Kosovo, it is the pattern of growth that will determine its sustainability. An inclusive growth means growth that does not leave behind vulnerable groups, but creates opportunities for them to have access to education, health, social services and jobs, that provide for a secure and decent life, and leads towards stable families and stable communities. The share of population that is marginalized in the exercise of their rights is very large in Kosovo, as the 2011 Human Development Report on Social Exclusion shows, and UNDP sees as its priority to contribute to the creation of better opportunities for these people in Kosovo. Thus, UNDP will also contribute in taking to the local level the implementation of the Millennium Development Goals, developing capacities needed for translating policy into delivery of quality public services, including at municipality, community and family levels for vulnerable groups.
Fostering an enabling environment for generation of inclusive economic growth and employment remains a priority. UNDP has pioneered an active labour market programme (ALMP) in Kosovo and this has lead to the adoption of an employment strategy by the government based on ALMP. In order to enable stakeholders to exchange information and cooperate on the labour market, UNDP supports the establishment of a Labour Market Information System, and engages with each of the stakeholders (MLSW, municipal employment offices, and vocational education training institutions, companies) in order to bridge the gap between the unemployed and the potential jobs or businesses. This programme is addressed to young women and men entering the labour market after school or university, to increasing numbers of readmitted persons returning to Kosovo, to minority communities, and people with disabilities. The reintegration of IDPs and returnees remains a priority for the social inclusion agenda. UNDP will work to develop the capacities of local and central institutions for provision of services to returnees (voluntary and forced, men and women both as head of families and returnees), IDPs, Roma, Ashkali and Egyptians and other vulnerable groups (with special focus on women) in support of their sustainable integration in the community.
The human development reports, surveys of municipalities, the Public Pulse and other studies that UNDP conducts for many years in Kosovo show that some communities experience complex challenges, are lagging behind in economic and social terms and require multilateral support. UNDP will support in Kosovo initiatives advancing an economic growth that benefits the poor (eg. Growing Inclusive Markets and Aid for Trade), paying special attention to entrepreneurship for women and green jobs. The findings of the Kosovo Remittance Study (2012) will serve as a starting point for discussing and testing models fostering the use of remittances as an instrument of investment. UNDP will also support the Ministry of Trade and Industry through analytical work and capacity building.
UNDP will continue to promote stability through support for integrated, inclusive community development by strengthening the capacities of relevant institutions to deliver public and social services in an inclusive and gender-sensitive manner. An expansion of area-based development initiatives will support local institutions, private sector and civil society in northern Kosovo to facilitate economic development, community stabilisation, and women’s empowerment. Activities will be extended to northern Kosovo Municipalities contributing to the overall local development in the area, availability and quality of employment opportunities and services including socially excluded and vulnerable groups. UNDP will seek to reduce urban-rural income disparities through targeting isolated and disadvantaged rural areas. In addition, initiatives that encourage regional cooperation and integration will be supported, and efforts made to capture and share knowledge between neighbouring countries.
Kosovo’s strategic documents and the dialogue with the EU around Kosovo’s EU integration objectives point to the centrality of effective and equitable democratic governance in Kosovo. Improved efficiency of the central and local institutions and the battle against corruption are put forth as strategic priorities. Complex public administration reforms have been implemented in the last seven years, and continuing improvements are made to improve the functioning of governing institutions at all levels, but the policy implementation and delivery of public services still has many weaknesses and the maturity of the legislature, of the judiciary and of democratic institutions requires further development. Significant disparities between the objectives of local authorities and their capacity to deliver, as well as the underdevelopment of civil society organizations to hold governments accountable and exercise effective representation and participation in policy processes need to be addressed in order to achieve inclusiveness and equitable access.
In the area of democratic governance UNDP will focus on strengthening capacities of central and local governments for gender responsive, quality policy processes. Civil society participation, women’s empowerment in decision making positions and greater transparency and accountability will receive important emphasis across these areas. Capacities of public administration in Kosovo will be developed through on-the-job mentoring and coaching for high ranking civil servants, and other support will be mobilised as necessary to support the implementation of the public administration strategy. Jointly with other UN agencies, UNDP will support the Kosovo Assembly, the women cross party caucus , the executive institutions and civil society organizations to improve the legislative, budgeting and implementation processes, strengthen the legislative’s monitoring and oversight mechanisms and achieve better internal and external accountability.
UNDP will continue to support the decentralization processes, building on the assessment led by the Ministry of Local Government Administration of the results of the local government reform undertaken during 2005-2010. Further support will include capacity development of new municipalities and local officials and improvement of secondary legislation in order to make local-level development more inclusive and other interventions to strengthen inter-municipal cooperation. Rule of law, a strong judiciary and access to justice for all are cornerstone of democratic governance. Kosovo has made good progress in establishing a legal aid system ,strengthening its judiciary but the backlogs of cases is still very high, people’s access to justice is constrained and the safety and security mechanisms at local level are fragile. UNDP will continue advancing gender justice by promoting the protection of women rights with a comprehensive legal empowerment outreach program involving CSOS and paralegal workers to reach out to the disadvantaged communities and women including the victims of violence . The judicial institutions will be addressed from a gender perspective to lead towards gender responsive services
UNDP will continue to work on judicial education (supporting the Initial Legal Education Programme, the Internship Programme, training for Bar Exam candidates), will provide expertise for legislative work and will assist the Supreme Court of Kosovo in harmonization of judicial practice. Support will also be provided for the roll out of the mediation and probation services. With OHCHR, UNDP will plan activities focused on transitional justice. Implementation of the anti-discrimination law and support to the Ombudsperson Institution will be among the priorities as well as legal empowerment activities at the community level, especially with paralegal workers to provide legal support to the most vulnerable, including women victims of violence. In security interventions a community safety approach from a human security perspective at local level with focus on “people-centred” security and a gender-sensitive focus will be applied. Specifically, UNDP will scale up community safety addressing two geographical hot spots for crime in Kosovo with main focus on armed violence and cross border crime. In addition, the programme will support implementation of the newly adopted domestic violence law through WSSI Women Safety Security Initiative project.
Environmental degradation is a significant development challenge, as Kosovo institutions have insufficient capacities to deal with environmental problems. In this regard the environment part of the programme will focus on developing capacities to address the impact of environmental degradation and climate change (in a gender-sensitive manner) at both central and local level. UNDP sees as a priority to help Kosovo authorities at central and local levels to improve the management and conservation of natural resources, with gender considerations applied at every stage. Thus, UNDP will support the establishment of the first national park in the Sharr mountains, and will work with the central and local level officials to help them prepare management plans, and gain capacity for the management of the park, including monitoring and management of valuable species, expansion of tourism activities, including possible trans-boundary initiatives and development of income-generating activities, protective of the environment, for villagers living in the protected area. The management of the national park is encompassed in a more comprehensive programme of support to the municipality of Dragash based on sustainable development principles. On the example of the first national park, UNDP will explore possibilities to disseminate further models of integrated management of natural resources.
The legal and regulatory framework for mitigation and adaptation to the impact of climate change is an important part of Kosovo’s agenda towards European integration; as a first step, UNDP provides support for the roll out of the greenhouse gas (GHG) inventory management system, that will provide the baseline for the policy and for the preparation of specific actions and projects for mitigation and adaptation to climate change. The contamination of the environment and the risks to health posed by the industrial waste of the Trepca Complex in the north of Kosovo is a major problem that requires concerted and fast response. Following remediation activities in the previous years, UNDP supported in 2011 the organization of a conference that convenes ministries, the local authorities, administration of Trepca complex, UN agencies and civil society organizations, in order to examine models of management of industrial waste in other countries and agree a list of short-term and medium term actions to stop the damage to the environment and to the health of people living in the area.
UNDP will also support the institutions involved in disaster management and disaster risk reduction (DRR) establish a Kosovo DRR platform, develop mechanisms for coordination and systems and tools for risk analysis and disaster preparedness.