ALBANIA, IMF CERTIFICATES POSITIVE ECONOMIC PERFORMANCE
According to the Report on Albania published by the IMF in the context of the consultations under Article IV, the Albanian economy continues to improve by taking advantage of the increase in domestic demand, foreign direct investment and the recovery of the main EU trading partners. Attention is however suggested to the Albanian authorities regarding the management of the public debt. The positive economic trend, with growth of around 4% of GDP, and the clear political mandate of the government, after the last general elections, offer a good opportunity to continue on the path of reforms, strengthening the competitiveness of the economy and the financial system respecting fiscal discipline. The Fund is particularly interested in reducing the rate of public debt (extending the terms and diversifying investors) and in the direction of measures to guarantee fiscal equilibrium (curbing tax reduction, preferential policies and exemption for some sectors) and reduce risks. In terms of investments and with reference to the government’s “one billion euro” program to attract funding for public works through the private public partnership formula, the Fund stresses the need for an appropriate framework for public private partnership projects, in accordance with international best practices. The Fund also expresses its concern about the progress of the reforms in the energy sector which “after an impressive start, have then found delays”. With reference to the banking system, the IMF reiterates the need for “continuous vigilance”, appreciating “progress in restructuring bad debts”.