In 2006 the government announced another initiative, the Excellence Fund, to grant scholarships to individual artists and scholars to study abroad, as well as travel and project grants to outstanding Albanian-born artists living abroad, to show their work in Albania.
In addition to project grants, the Ministry of Tourism, Culture, Youth and Sports issues five national prizes in the field of literature, amounting to 1 200 USD each (2005 figures), for poetry, prose, non-fiction, translation of works into Albanian and translation of works from Albanian into other languages. A selection committee of five members is made up of representatives from the Ministry, the National Library and professional associations. In addition, there is a special prize for children’s literature including stories, poetry, works of non-fiction and illustrations. The selection is carried out through a similar committee, which also includes a psychologist and a painter.
Ten national prizes are awarded by KULT magazine, supported by the Ministry.
A prize for booksellers is planned for the future.
Except for the young theatre directors scheme (see chapter 7.2.1), there are no other programmes or grant schemes designed for start-ups or newcomers, scholarships for further training, travel bursaries or residency programmes.