Municipality of Prespa
The Municipality of Prespa is located in the north-west of Greece, on the borders of Greece, Albania and the Republic of North Macedonia; it is 50 km away from the city of Florina and 45 km away from the city of Kastoria with a surface area (including inland waters) of 515,497 sq. km. and 1,570 inhabitants, according to the 2011 Census, the Municipality of Prespa is one of the largest, but the least populated, Municipalities in Greece.
The Municipality of Prespa is one Municipality since 2011 (with the unification of the Municipality of Prespa and the Commune of Krystallopigi) with 16 local Communities (including 20 settlements).
It is divided in the Division of Management & Financial Services and in the Division of Technical Services & Environment. During the last few years the Municipality has participated in numerous INTERREG projects (PEEBPE, GREEN BOAT, TOURACT, etc.) related to the protection and promotion of the Prespes Lakes area. The Greece-The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia 2007-2013 PEEBPE (Promotion of Energy Efficiency in Buildings and Protection of the Environment) project has been selected as a good practice in the Best Practice Category “Institutional partnerships & Project management” and was presented during the 1st European Territorial Cooperation Conference: Promoting Best Practices-Sharing Experiences.
The main occupations of the inhabitants are: 1) Primary sector: agriculture (mainly Prespa beans on a surface area of 1,000 ha of arable land), stock-breeding (sheep-goat breeding / 13,000 heads, cattle for meat production / 2,000 heads, swine / 100 heads), forestry, fishing; 2) Secondary sector: one cooperative small industry for bean packaging; 3) Tertiary sector: 29 hostels and hotels, 26 restaurants, more than 30 other small businesses.
The boundaries of the Municipality are within the Greek part of the Prespa basin and also include the sub-basins of Krystallopigi. The Greek Prespa basin consists of Little Prespa Lake and Great Prespa Lake in an altitude of 850 m., mountains with peaks higher than 1,800 m. (i.e. Varnoundas, Triklario, Vigla) and part of the valley of Korestia.
The Prespes Lakes area represents an area of international importance (NATURA 2000/GR 1340001 & GR 1340003 SCI/SPA, Ramsar site, National Park 28651/9.2.2009), shared by the 3 neighboring countries (Greece, Albania and Republic of North Macedonia) in southeast Europe. Of the total surface area of Prespes Lakes, 190 km² belongs to the Republic of North Macedonia, 84,8 km² to Greece and 38,8 km² to Albania. The Great Prespa Lake is divided between the 3 countries. The Small Prespa Lake is shared only between Greece and Albania. The Prespes Lakes area contains the highest degree of species biodiversity in a corresponding surface area in Europe.