The Mabetex project – A silent threat to the Divjakë-Karavasta National Park

++Civil society demands the prevention of the destruction of the Divjakë-Karavasta National Park by the urbanization project aimed at mass tourism ++

Tirana, November 9, 2017. In a forum dedicated to discussing the negative environmental impacts of Mabetex Group’s urbanization investment in the Divjakë-Karavasta National Park, the Coalition of Civil Society in Defense of the Divjakë-Karavasta National Park informed the public about the threat it poses the implementation of this project in one of the largest and most important wetlands in the Mediterranean and one of the most preserved territories in Albania.

On the panel from left to right: Olsi Nika, EcoAlbania; Ola Miter, moderator; Ferdinand Bego, Fauna Expert, Faculty of Natural Sciences; Taulant Bino, AOS. (c) B. Stone

On March 2017, the Mabetex Group company presented the project for the construction of a tourist resort within the National Park, which was opposed from the beginning by civil society.

“The urbanization proposed in the form of the ‘Divjakë Resort Albania’ Master Plan and proposed by the Mabetex Group Company to the Albanian authorities has devastating consequences where mass tourism dominates, multi-storey buildings, marine erosion and the degradation of the ecological services of this natural ecosystem. The project is associated with loss of natural habitats, loss of symbolic species such as the curly pelican, degradation of the economic sustainability of the entire Divjaka area. The project violates our legal framework and the conventions signed by the Albanian state. This project is unsustainable and should be stopped an hour ago!” said Taulant Bino from AOS (Ornithological Society of Albania).

(c) B. Guri / EcoAlbania

The construction project aims at the occupation and alienation of 10% of the Park’s territory, while the accompanying, supporting infrastructure (roads, lighting, electrical network, breakwaters, etc.) will negatively affect its entire surface. “If this project is implemented as designed, it will bring irreversible changes to the ecosystem, it will seriously damage the ecological integrity of the park and the Ramsar Divjakë-Karavasta area”, said Prof. Ferdinand Bego, fauna expert at the Faculty of Natural Sciences.

Stretched along 12 km of coastline, the project envisages the construction of 2400 apartments, 370 villas, a tourist resort of 90 ha with a maximum capacity of 18,000 tourists/day. “All these constructions in KP Divjakë-Karavasta will completely change the aquatic ecosystems of the lagoon, leading to a decrease in the quality of the waters and causing the disruption of many balances of the living organisms living in the lagoon. The Ministry of Tourism and Environment must guarantee the protection of the National Natural Park and not allow a private investment to harm its integrity by allowing the transformation into a new tourist city”, said Olsi Nika from EcoAlbania.

Additional information:

This forum is organized as part of the awareness campaign “Stop Urbanization of the Divjakë-Karavasta National Park”, undertaken by a group of national organizations (AOS, EcoAlbania, LexFerenda and Pseda-Iliria) which is supported by LëvizAlbania and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation ( SDC).

This is the first public forum that the coalition of civil society organizes to make the public aware of the negative impacts of the urbanization project in PK Divajkë-Karavasta, which will be followed by 2 other forums.

Find here the awareness Spot produced as part of the “Stop Urbanization of the Divjakë-Karavasta National Park” campaign.

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