Strong earthquake, a visit to parliament, VISIGRAD on EU negotiations, salaries, statistics and a literature prize

Berat Albanien

Dear reader,

Need some inspiration for your next Holiday. If so you might click on the picture (the city of Berat) above.

Foreign investments up in 2019

Foreign direct investments (FDI) were up by 10% in the first 6 months of 2019, whilst the companies with foreign capital have expanded their activity in Albania. Official data by the Bank of Albania, show that between January-June 2019, the foreign companies invested over €535 million in the Albanian economy, from €484 million for the same period in 2019. Read on

Earthquake hits the Albanian capital region






A strong earthquake (5,6 on the Richter scale), the worst in 30 years, on September 21. occurred near the cities of Durres and Tirana. Several strong aftershocks followed. No fatal casualties but damage to rather many buildings. Albania is no. 43 on the list of countries with the greatest risk of earthquakes. Read on..

Albanian ambassador meets speaker of Parliament

Ambassador Elida Petoshati was received on September 12. by the Speaker of the Danish Parliament (Folketinget) Henrik Dam Kristensen. During a very warm discussion, the parliamentary cooperation was deemed an important dimension of the overall bilateral relations and the multiple friendship ties consolidated over the years between Albania and Denmark. Both interlocutors agreed that furthering high-level exchanges and the ongoing work between the two Parliaments` administrations will directly impact the advancement of the political relationship and Albania`s European path.




Statement by the VISIGRAD group on Albania and North Macedonia

The Prime Ministers of the Visegrad Group countries met with partners from the Western Balkans in Prague on September 12. 2019. In this context, the V4 leaders:

– Reiterated their unequivocal support for the EU accession of the Western Balkans and their firm belief that reunification of Europe cannot be complete without them joining the European Union.
– Underlined that the EU enlargement policy provides an invaluable tool for achieving security, stability, and prosperity in the Western Balkans; consequently, a credible enlargement policy
represents a strategic investment in the security, stability and prosperity of the EU as well.
– Stressed that accession is and will remain a merit-based process fully dependent on the objective progress achieved and
– Called on all EU stakeholders, in view of the October General Affairs Council, to maintain and consolidate the positive momentum created as a result of the substantial progress made in reforms as well as the entry into force of the historic Prespa Agreement by opening accession negotiations with North Macedonia and Albania.

Salaries in Albania

The average monthly gross wage for an employee in Albania was Lek 52.645 (or 431 Euro) in the second trimester of 2019. The Institute of Statistics has posted on 11. September the publication titled ‘The salary statistics’. Based on the report the average monthly wage increased by 4.5% compared to the same period last year.
The biggest decrease in wages was in the construction sector, by 2.6% in the second trimester of 2019, compared to the same period of last year. This comes as a result of not matching the offer with the demand. The high number of constructions, especially in Tirana, hasn’t had the same response from the buyers recently, as their prices per m2 have gone up, thus becoming more expensive for potential buyers.

According to official data by INSTAT, the average monthly gross salary in in the financial and insurance sector was around Lek 113.000 (or 925 Euro). But data shows that this sector has had a slight decrease during this period, by 0.7%. The banking system has entered a phase of restructuring and sales, which has caused massive cut-downs of staff in this sector.
In general, the other professions pay lower than Lek 60.000/monthly, with agriculture, forestry, and fishing being the least paid professions, with an average monthly gross wage of Lek 39.000. The administration sector seems to pay more than the private sector, with an average monthly gross wage of Lek 63.000 and Lek 47.000 respectively. The minimum wage in Albania is Lek 26.000 (or 215 Euro) being the lowest in the Balkan region and in Europe. Read on..

Albania as in Statistics:







Click on illustration or here to read it all…

Ismail Kadare wins new prize!

Ismail Kadare, famous Albanian writer, has won the award Pak Kyongni for 2019. In the official announcement made by Kim Uchang, chief of the selective committee, says that the works of Ismail Kadare cause the readers to ponder and feel strongly about their relationships with certain historic events. The ceremony where the Albanian writer is invited to receive the award will take place on Saturday, 26 October 2019, in the Toji Cultural Center in South Korea.
This award is accompanied by a cash prize of $100.000 (or €90.000), making it one of the richest international prizes given in the literature. The selection is done after reviewing 350 writers from all over the world, who fulfill the defined criteria.(IIA)

That´s all for now,

Hans-Georg Nielsen
Albanian Honorary Consul

Comments and suggestions are welcome on hgn(at)
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