TIRANA, October 14
The Italian Chamber of Commerce in Albania (CCIA) and Confindustria Albania issued a joint press release on Monday on their concerns regarding the recent economic performance in Albania.
The Commerce Chamber and Confindustria Albania call for an immediate and renewed commitment from the Albanian Government, its officials, all the institutions, including the trade associations, to discuss the effectiveness of the reforms and to implement all the actions necessary to give clarity, certainty and predictability to the business environment in compliance with fair, shared and transparent rules.
The joint statement follows the data published by the Institute of Statistics (INSTAT) in the second quarter (Q2) GDP rate at 2.31 percent. The press statement highlights that according to government forecast, economic growth would be 4.3 percent in 2019 and 4.4 percent in 2020. On the other hand, the World Bank (WB) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecasts were relieved to 2.9 percent for 2019.
“Since several quarters, the Albanian economy has not been growing at a pace that could lead to increased employment and improved wages. A 2.31 percent GDP rate neither can be considered satisfactory nor sufficient to generate new jobs, or to return to a growing economic cycle,” it was said in the press release.
Further on, both institutions agree on the fact that unpredictable external factors such as lack of rainfall had a partial impact on economic growth during the last quarter.
“Yet, it would be restraining if the analysis of these negative indicators was attributable to lower electricity production,” they added.
Read below the concerns raised by CCIA and Confindustria Albania
“The worrying truth is that the figures in question depend on a progressive deterioration of the business climate that further worsened recently.
Most Italian and foreign businesses in general, Albanian firms included, signal that many things are not working as promised, making it difficult to create or develop economic activities, which are the real source of income and employment.
The way how the public administration is functioning also created concern among investors, who are already tired of public servants who tend to shun decisions for which they should be competent, as well as any form of ongoing and constructive dialogue. Businesses face difficulties in finding competent interlocutors and only is rare occasions they do get the right answers.
These obstacles not only increase the distrust of businesses operating in Albania with negative consequences for their investment goals but also contribute to the deterioration of the country’s risk perception and the attraction of any potential investors.
Despite this, the attention of institutions seems to focus solely on political debates, without going deeper into the analysis of the real causes of the economic slowdown and on the rising climate of confidence loss that seems to have involved all entrepreneurs, preferring instead to put the blame on external factors.
The abovementioned is fundamental to sustained growth that could improve the living conditions of the Albanian people and bring Albania closer to the European Union, in the hope of stopping youth migration,” the press release concluded.
Press statment in Italian and Albanian Press
Source: Confindustria Albania