Global Union of the Diaspora Networks established

18 May 2014

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The four days Diaspora Investment and Network Conference held in Prishtinë/Priština, where the Global Union on Diaspora Business Networks was established, concluded on 18 May 2014. The conference was organized by the Ministry of Diaspora and Ministry of Trade and Industry with support of the DEED project "Diaspora Engagement in Economic Development", which is funded by the Finnish Government and implemented by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the International Organisation for Migration (IOM). This is part of DEED Project activities for 2014 in supporting the Ministry of Diaspora in implementation of the Kosovo Strategy on Diaspora and Migrants 2013-2018.

This conference brought together over fifty (50) very successful and well established entrepreneurs who are members of the Boards of the 14 Diaspora Business Networks established in the United States, Canada and Europe. During this four day event, many successful Diaspora businesses in Kosovo were visited, several investment projects were presented by mayors of Prishtinë/Priština, Mitrovicë/a, Gjakovë/Djakovica, Ferizaj/Uroševac, Rahovec/Orahovac, and Junik and on the last day a workshop was held, facilitated by Mr. Kingsley Aikins – international expert on networking Diaspora businesses from Ireland - who introduced best practices in the field of formalization, empowerment and operation of Diaspora business networks according to the long experience of Irish Diaspora but also other countries such as Lithuania, Moldova, Israel and India.

The highlight of the event was the establishment of the Global Union on Diaspora Business Networks with a president and to vice presidents, one for Europe and one for the United States followed by a Business to Business event where many potential and ambitious joint investment ventures in Kosovo were initiated.  All entrepreneurs expressed their enthusiasm for this unique undertaking as this conference is the first of its kind and marks the unprecedented effort and dedication of Kosovo’s Institutions supported by the DEED Project to engage the Diaspora in Kosovo economic development. Moreover, it was decided that on May, of every following year, such event will be organised in Prishtinë/Priština, by the newly established Global Union.

At the conclusion of the event, Minister of Diaspora Mr. Ibrahim Makolli, commended the Diaspora business community for their shown enthusiasm and promised that this is an enormously important initiative for Kosovo’s future economic development and he offered full institutional support.

He also thanked in particular the DEED project for the continued support, the excellent cooperation and dedication shown not just for the successful conclusion of this event, but also during the last two years.