Economy in Brief

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times May 17, 2019 12:31

Economy in Brief

Currency exchange rates face stabilization

Following the resumption of the abroad money transferring from the Tirana International Airport, (which stopped following a robbery within the airport's perimeter) has brought a stabilization to the previously jarring currency exchange rates. The exchange of foreign rates drastically dropped, the rates saw a slow growth. However, the euro remains low, because the demand for currency remains weak and the bid high. Meanwhile, the added dose of the political crisis is giving its impact on curbing consumption, and the interest rates on euro deposits remain close to zero, which discourages individuals to keep euro in banks. Furthermore, as summer season approaches, market actors predict that the euro will remain weak as a result of increased inflows of foreign currencies by tourists who have already begun to arrive, and later on immigrants who culminate in August.


Unemployment based on education level

The industries (call center, tourism, apparel) which don't need high qualifications have been expanding lately which have led to a decrease in unemployment levels among middle and high school graduates by 2.4 and 1.2 percentage points, respectively. This group is the highest among which remained unemployed in 2018 amounting to 34.5 and 32 percent, respectively. The industry expansion however has led to an increase of unemployed PhD holders at 0.2 percent of the total, or 346 persons. University diploma holders employment increased by 0.3 percentage points during 2018, but the group's unemployment level remains high at 22.5 percent, or 38 thousand persons. Persons with vocational education were unemployed at only 10 percent of the total, the total of unemployed in 2018 being 173,207 persons.


Political turmoil keeps tourists off

Albanian Tourist Union chairman and managing director at "Happy Tours Albania" Rrahman Kasa, said that their partnering agencies from the Czech Republic, Poland, Nordic countries, etc., have expressed their concerns as their clients are canceling their reservations for Albania because of the political turmoil in our country portrayed in their home-country's media. Most cancellations came from the Nordic countries and Germany, who previously were of the highest number in tourist visitors to Albania. Apart from tourists, foreign visitors are cancelling their reservations for conferences and trainings are well. Even though exact numbers haven't shown up yet, Kasa's partners are trying to calm their clients down while expecting news developments.


Lifestyle is a factor for death rates amongst Albanians

According to the Albanian Institute of Statistics (INSTAT), hypertension, diabetes and smoking are the number one lethal causes to mortality rates amongst Albanians for 2018. 870 in 10 thousand persons had hypertension, and 274 persons in 10 thousand suffered from diabetes. 5 percent of females aged 15-49 smoked and 28 percent (1 in 4) drank alcohol, whereas for males the numbers were 36 percent for smoking, and 60 percent (6 in 10) for alcohol consumption. Only 36 percent of females and 14 percent of males in the age group consumed the recommended amount of fruits during the day, but only 6.8 percent of females and 2.6 percent of males consumed the recommended amount of vegetables. The death toll decreased by 1.9 percent in 2018, but natural causes are the number one factor, followed by accidents.


15 percent of Albanians keep their money off banks

Data from the Bank of Albania estimate that 15 percent of Albanians prefer not to keep their savings in banks. The 13 percent said they keep the money in their homes, while the rest 2 percent said they have invested their money in usury lendings. Of 1200 families surveyed, 39 percent of them did not have any kind of savings. But only 40 percent of households have bank accounts, while the rest have invested financial assets in pension funds, insurance companies and treasury bills though with very small percentages. This survey is in accordance a BoA initiative to reform the small value payment system towards digitalisation, which aims to increase the number of bank account holders by 38 percent in its last measurement, to 70 percent in 2022.


Albanians are optimist for their children and grandchildren future

Albania is ranked alongside countries like Finland, Sweden and Denmark for optimism regarding the future of children or grandchildren. 75 percent of Albanians surveyed in the Quality of Life Survey drafted by the European Commission stated that they look optimistic about the future of children and grandchildren, while a quarter of respondents gave a different view. Comparing to the region, Albanians have been the most optimistic about the future of succeeding generations, followed by Serbians, where 68 percent of them expressed optimism for their children's future. Montenegro follows suit with 66 percent of respondents optimistic and Macedonia with 65 percent. The least optimistic were Turks with only 50 percent admitting to being optimistic.


Tirana heads on penal cases for fraud

The penal cases on fraud marked an increase by 21 percent during 2018. The figures made public in a recent Prosecutor's Office report suggest that the specific weight this offense has in the criminal offense group "Fraud" was 85.85 percent for 2018, while in 2017 it was 59.2 percent. 51 percent of the total number of proceedings in the country were made in Tirana, followed by Durres with 12 percent. The specific weight of "Insurance Fraud" in the group of penal offenses "Frauds" was 8.5 percent for 2018, while in 2017 it was 36 percent, with a significant decrease in the number of such cases. The specific weight of "Violation of industrial property rights" in the group of offenses against fraud for 2018 was 2.3 percent, while in 2017 it was 1.7 percent with a slight increase.

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times May 17, 2019 12:31