In 2008, USAID Mission in Kosovo rolled out the Kosovo Private Enterprise Program (KPEP). The program was awarded to Booz Allen Hamilton and its consortium of implementing partners — which included DevTech Systems. The goal of KPEP was “to stimulate private sector competitiveness of Kosovo’s economy.” At the time of the program design, Kosovo’s economy was only growing at approximately three percent and unemployment was at 40 percent. Challenges facing enterprises in the newly independent country included unreliable electricity supplies, insufficient transportation corridors, cost-prohibitive financing rates, and weak economic demand.
In the context of the USAID Kosovo Strategic Plan 2010 – 2014, KPEP played a pivotal role. The program was designed to elevate impact by catalyzing transformational change for Kosovo’s economy through lasting improvements in private sector competitiveness. The program was broken down into four main components:
- Support private sector in targeted sectors with potential for growth and competitiveness.
- Identify demand-driven development for business support services.
- Improve the business-enabling environment.
- Workforce development
Furthermore, KPEP also addressed several crosscutting areas, including gender, youth, and minority development.
DevTech’s contribution in the preliminary stages of the program were in the workforce development component. DevTech specialists identified training gaps in critical economic sectors, and developed both short- and long-term intervention plans. The key sectors included agriculture, construction, forestry, ICT, tourism, recycling, metals, and decorative stone.
As a whole, the program surpassed all of the key performance indicators developed under the Performance-Based Management System. Results included:
- A total increase in sales across all enterprises. A target increase of 23.4 percent was set at the beginning of the project. The end result was over 50 percent growth in sales when compared to the baseline.
- An increase in full-time equivalent jobs. With a target increase set at roughly 5,000 jobs, the end result was over 6,500 newly creation positions.
- A cumulative increase in both exports and investment.
DevTech strengthens the capacity of governments, businesses, and citizens to build open and sustainable economic systems that encourage growth and reduce poverty. We have proven experience helping local and national governments implement sound budget practices, carry out financial reforms, support small businesses, and establish effective economic policies and regulations. Our expertise in public financial management and fiscal sustainability as well as our work in education, gender, and youth, made us an ideal partner for Booz Allen Hamilton for this portion of the project. Our experience enabled us to provide key insight and crucial planning during the preliminary stages of this program. To learn more about this project, see the full report, or learn more about DevTech’s capabilities, please visit the page for this project.