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Key Economic Data 
  2003 2002 2001 Ranking(2003)
Millions of US $ 6,124 4,695 4,100 109
GNI per capita
 US $ 1,740 1,380 1,340 120
Ranking is given out of 208 nations - (data from the World Bank)

Books on Albania

Update No: 152 - (25/01/10)

Albania held parliamentary elections in June last year, won by the incumbent party, the Liberal Party of Premier Sali Berisha. They were strongly denounced as fraudulent by the opposition.

 Albanian opposition determined to continue parliamentary boycott
Opposition Socialist Party (SP) leader Edi Rama said on January 4th that his party is determined to continue its parliamentary boycott until the government agrees to investigate the June 2009 general elections. Rama insists they were manipulated by the majority Democratic Party, despite the fact international institutions praised the elections process.

The SP has been boycotting parliament since September, hampering the EU accession process.

Rama has been a reforming Mayor of Tirana for years and is certainly the hand-picked choice of the intellectuals of the country, who number more than one might think. The one redeeming feature of communism was its emphasis on education.

In Albania's case the key figure was Enver Hoxha, a long-time dictator, who died in March 1985, just as Gorbachev was taking over in the Kremlin. This was an event he would have abhorred from his own hard-line point of view. Hoxha was, however, a cultured man, multilingual and a man of parts.

The mudslinging mounts
The European Union has called on Albania to start political dialogue to overcome the problems in the country. The Swedish foreign minister Carl Bildt called on the Albanian authorities and political parties to start immediate dialogue on the development of the country.

Political conditions in Albania require fast dialogue for the country to move forward and this message is important for Tirana, Bildt said.

The appeal was made amid new tension rising in Albania between the government and the opposition and the sharp criticisms and accusations traded between Prime Minister Sali Berisha and Edi Rama, leader of the leader of the opposition Socialist Party and Tirana mayor.

Recently, Berisha said Rama is a leader of Albanian mafia and Rama said Berisha works only for his family and the clan around it.

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