TIRANA, January 18
In 2020, Albania exports amounted to Lek 272 billion. This is 9.0 percent less compared to 2019, the Institute of Statistics confirmed on Monday. Imports were worth Lek 605 billion, which is 6.8 percent less compared to 2019. Meanwhile, the trade deficit was Lek 333 billion at the end of December, a 4.9 percent decline compared to 2019. In the first months of the year, international trade was showing a year-over-year increase. However, trade fell over the end of the first quarter (Q1) and Q2 following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic and measures taken to curb the spread of the virus. Despite the huge impact on the main sectors, international trade started to pick up during summer while in December 2020, exports increased 5.4 percent compared to December 2019.
In terms of the worst-hit sectors, textile and footwear manufacturing were hit most severely. Exports of apparel and footwear goods declined by 5.3 percent in 2020. Moreover, the sector of mining, fuels, and electricity saw a 3.5 percent decline in goods export.
On the other hand, the sectors that saw an increase in exports were food, beverages, and tobacco 1.2 percent, and machinery, equipment, and spare parts 0.5 percent.
In terms of trade partners, in 2020 Albania saw the highest increase in exported goods with Germany 12.8 percent, Greece 3.4 percent, and North Macedonia 3.4 percent. Exports to the European Union member countries accounted for 74.7 percent of exports. The main trade partners in 2020 were Italy 31.4 percent, Greece 7.7 percent, Germany 7.1 percent, and Turkey 7.0 percent.