Albania Country Report - June, 2013

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Albania Country Report - June, 2013

Albania held general elections on June 23 that were won by the Socialist-led coalition. The left-wing coalition comprising the Socialist Party (SP) and the Socialist Movement for Integration (SMI) won 84 mandates in the 140-seat parliament against 56 mandates for the coalition led by former ruling Democratic Party (DP). SP leader and Prime Minister designate Edi Rama said he will form the country’s next government in September.

International observers said the country made progress in the election process but noted that the polls were held in a highly polarised political environment. The performance of free and fair elections in Albania was set by the European Commission as a precondition for the country's further EU integration. The positive assessment of the elections will help Albania to reach its goal for getting EU candidate country status.

On the macroeconomic front, the statistics office announced GDP data for the first quarter of 2013 showing the economy expanding by 1.7% year on year, slightly slower than the 1.8% growth in the last three months of 2012. The government expects full-year GDP growth at 3.1%. In a new forecast, Raiffeisen reiterated expectations for Albania’s economic outlook keeping its estimate of 2% growth for 2013.

Albania’s general budget deficit expanded by 114% year on year in the first five months of 2013 and accounted for 2.7% of the projected full-year GDP, up from 1.3% a year earlier. Consumer price inflation in the country speeded up to 2.3% year on year in June from 2.1% in May with the overall trend again determined by food prices.

Number of pages: 19
Release Date: Thu, 25 Jul 2013