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Vlora, the ‘elite’ city with a primitive market

Vlora, the city with almost 200,000 inhabitants, does not have a proper market for fruits and vegetables, dairy products or for living things. At the end of the second mandate, the mayor Dritan Leli did not undertake to fulfill the promise given to Vlonjatëve in two consecutive campaigns. The lack of a market with standards is harming not only consumers, but also the collection of income from tax collection, which has decreased three times compared to two years ago.

Jerola Ziaj

If you happen to visit any of the markets in the city of Vlora, you will be faced with a pile of iron bars and wooden slats designed for fruit and vegetable displays, sheet metal instead of shelter, with primitive drainage in fabricated plastic bags, passageways between blocks of housing. 7 years after he promised to build “New markets for agricultural and livestock products”, Dritan Leli, the head of the municipality of Vlora, did not keep his promise. Click

In the last year of his mandate, Dritan Leli and the administration of the municipality of Vlora, did not realize the investment in the markets. In the item of investments, no funds with the destination of rehabilitation, improvement of conditions or the construction of a real market are foreseen.

The city of Vlora counts three markets for the sale of food products and one for live things. All these facilities are located in the middle of residential blocks or even by the national road.

Due to the lack of sanitary conditions, during the pandemic, the Civil Protection Commission at the District Prefect proposed to the municipality of Vlora to close one of them, the “Rice Market”, a decision which the municipality took after consultation, in the Municipal Council on April 14, 2020 .

At the same time, the Food Control Authority in Vlora reasoned that the rules for hygiene were not respected and despite the good will, this market cannot offer service in conditions of lack of basic trading standards.

But the same market has been reopened for more than a year and free trading continues, even though the conditions have not improved and there is no official decision from the Municipality of Vlora for its reopening.

Flamur Mamaj, the prefect of the District, admitted that the trading conditions are difficult. “There is no real market in the city, in the case of the Rice market, the merchants have started working again, even though outside of any hygienic-sanitary conditions” – said Mamaj. The municipality of Vlora, until the publication of this article, did not respond to our interest in the real situation in the city’s markets.

We also asked for a comment from AKU Vlorë, but we were told to get the answers from the municipality. Due to the difficult working conditions, the number of traders in this market has also been significantly reduced. This has directly affected the decrease in budget revenues. In 2020, about 16.6 million ALL were generated from market fees, while in the expected budget of 2022, the income has decreased at least three times, or to 5 million ALL. Traders, some of whom have nearly 3 decades of work, frustrated by the lack of a market with standards, are already planning to leave the business.

“There are no conditions and no sale, do you see this sheet metal above your head? I did it just to avoid getting caught in the rain. I’m looking to run to the children outside, it can’t go on like this!” – says a merchant for Faktoje.  The official data of the municipality of Vlora count 53,555 families who meet their food needs in these markets without hygiene and minimal conditions.

The verification carried out showed that the promise of two mandates for the establishment of a market with standards in Vlora, is unfulfilled.

 

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