Webinar: Albania and the Western Balkans after the Coronavirus: opportunities in the new global economy?

10  June 2020    10:00 am CEST

The Austrian Embassy in Tirana and the Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies (wiiw) are pleased to invite you to the webinar.


Online Event


The following questions will be addressed:

  • What are the most important economic impacts of the Coronavirus on Albania and the Western Balkans?
  • Will the crisis lead Western firms to invest less in Asia and more in Eastern Europe in the future?
  • Will Albania and the Western Balkans be able to take advantage of near-shoring by Western firms in the coming years?
  • What are the main opportunities for Albania and the Western Balkans in the post-Coronavirus global economy?
  • What can the EU do to help economic development in the Western Balkans and support integration into European value chains?

Opening remarks: Christian Steiner, Austrian Ambassador to Albania

Richard Grieveson, Deputy Director at the Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies (wiiw)
Arben Malaj, Professor of Economics and President of the Institute for Public Policy and Good Governance, University of Tirana (Albania)
Milica Uvalic, Professor of Economics at the Department of Political Science, University of Perugia (Italy)

Moderator: Mario Holzner, Executive Director the Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies (wiiw)

Registration: https://my.demio.com/ref/JPBrJ7Hg0MeOhVRn

The presentation will be held in English. 
Attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions.

Christian Steiner is the Austrian Ambassador to Albania. Before coming to Tirana he was the Head of the Executive Secretariat of the Austrian Presidency of the Council of the European Union 2018 and completed diplomatic assignments at the Austrian Embassies in Beijing, Ankara, and Damascus as Deputy Head of Mission. Several positions in the department for EU affairs of the Austrian Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs such as Head of Unit for EU Budget, Financial and Monetary Affairs and Head of Unit for EU and economic relations with the Western Balkan countries. His diplomatic career began as Attaché at the Austrian Embassy in Tirana in 1996-1997. Christian Steiner graduated from the University of Economics and Business Administration in Vienna.

Richard Grieveson is Deputy Director at wiiw, coordinator of the wiiw country analysis team and country expert for the Western Balkans and Turkey. His main area of research is CESEE country analysis and economic forecasting. He holds a Graduate Diploma in Economics from the University of London, Birkbeck, a Master in Advanced International Studies from the University of Vienna and a BA in History from the University of Cambridge. Previously he worked as a Director in the Emerging Europe Sovereigns team at Fitch Ratings, with a focus on the CIS and Balkans. Before that, he was Regional Manager and lead analyst for Germany and Poland in the Europe team at the Economist Intelligence Unit.

Arben Malaj has been graduated in Finance at the University of Tirana. During 2005-2006 attended Harvard Kennedy School (HKS), as Senior Fellow at M-RCBG, focusing on research on Western Balkans European integration. 1997-1998 he served as Minister of Finance; 2002-2003 Minister of Economy and during 2004-2005 Minister of Finance. 2016-2019 Member of supervisory Board of Central Bank of Albania. Prof. Malaj is the Honorary President of IPPM of the Institute for Public Policies and Good Governance (http://www.ippm.al/), Focus - banking sector reform, public finance management, good governance, higher education, etc.

Milica Uvalić is Professor of Economics at the University of Perugia, Italy.  Formerly she was a member of the UN Committee for Development Policy, a Public Policy Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson Centre in Washington DC, Assistant Minister in the Federal government of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, President of the European Association for Comparative Economic Studies and President of the Italian Association for Comparative Economic Systems. She holds a PhD in Economics from the European University Institute, Florence, Italy. Her research and teaching areas are in comparative economics with a focus on the Balkans, Central Eastern Europe and the European Union.

Mario Holzner is responsible for general management, finances and personnel. He is also coordinating economic policy development and communication with a focus on European economic policy. He has recently worked on issues of infrastructure investment in greater Europe, proposing a European Silk Road. Mario Holzner is also a lecturer in applied econometrics at the University of Vienna, Department of Economics. He obtained his PhD in economics at the Vienna University of Economics and Business in 2005.