The debate on failure to open negotiations with the European Union it has focused mainly on the political sphere, but the greatest consequences of the Brussels no for Albania will fall on the economy.
"In terms of direct costs in European Union projects and funding there will be no consequences, because the status of negotiations with the EU does not change anything.
However, in terms of indirect costs on our economy, the consequences are serious and perhaps long-term; in concrete terms, the most serious consequence will be disappointment"- he stated for the Albanian television station Top Channel the former finance minister of Albania, Arben Malaj.
Indeed, economic experts claim that trust is the most important stimulus in the sector. When this fails, leaving room for disappointment and frustration, companies also spend less.
"The disappointment deriving from the latest developments in the country and the failure to open the accession negotiations for the European integration process, risks increasing a higher level of disappointment and frustration which in the economy manifests itself with the fall in consumption and investment.
At the same time, this will foster a greater tendency to emigrate to EU countries for Albanian citizens in search of a better life."- Malaj continues for Top Channel.
Furthermore, the stagnation of the integration process will have a further consequence: it negatively influences the evaluation of international rating companies - such as Moodi's o Standard & Poor's - on the financial stability of the country:
"So far these companies that play a very important role for potential investors, positively highlight the process of European integration of Albania.
This temporary interruption of the route, which we do not know how long it will last, can create an additional cost to the economy and, consequently, we will see an increase in the cost of money, the risk premium of the export agencies of the countries from which the investors could increase making Albania less competitive in attracting foreign investments, which we really need. "- concluded Malaj.
According to the latter, in the face of this situation, it becomes indispensable for Albania to deepen reforms to strengthen the rule of law and institutions, as well as to increase economic competitiveness.
Who is Arben Malaj
Arben Malaj was Minister of Economy and Finance of Albania several times from the 1997 to the 2005. It is known for having transformed the country's economy into the European model, after the harsh socio-economic crisis that Albania had crossed in the 1997.
From 2016, Malaj is a member of the supervisory board of the Bank of Albania and is honorary president of the Albanian think tank IPPM (of which he is also one of the founders). He is associate professor in the Faculty of Economics of the University of Tirana, and has published numerous economics studies guiding many doctoral students on topics concerning local and global financial developments (wikipedia)
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