Albania flag Albania: Economic and Political Overview

Foreign trade figures of Albania

Foreign Trade in Figures

Albania’s foreign trade represents 75% of its GDP and is mostly made with Europe (World Bank, latest data available). The country mainly imports machinery, equipment and spare parts (19.7%); minerals, fuels, electricity (18.1%); food, beverages, tobacco (15.7%); construction materials and metals (14.4%); and chemical and plastic products (12.3%). Exports are led by textile and footwear (27.8%); minerals, fuels, and electricity (22.1%); construction materials and metals (21.6%); and food, beverages, and tobacco (10.6% - data Instat 2022).

Trade with EU countries represented 59% of total trade in 2022: in this period, the share of EU countries was 73.4% of total export and 51.6% of total imports. The main trade export destinations were Italy (43.2 %), Kosovo (7.8%), Germany (6.6%), Greece (5.2%) and Spain (4.8%); whereas imports came chiefly from Italy (21.7%), Turkey(12.1%), China (8.2%), Greece (7.8%), and Germany (6.2% - data Instat).

Albania's trade balance is structurally in deficit, mainly because exports are neither sufficiently diversified nor competitive in terms of price and because of the country’s narrow production base. In 2021, merchandise exports reached USD 3.5 billion (+42% y-o-y), while imports increased at a slower pace (38.5%), to reach USD 7.7 billion. However, the country is a net exporter of commercial services, which stood at USD 4 billion against USD 2 billion in imports (+65.4% and +59.1% y-o-y, respectively - data by WTO). According to data from the Institute of Statistics, Albania’s exports surged by by 32% in 2022, to ALL 486.7 billion against ALL 950.3 billion in imports (+18.7%).

 
Foreign Trade Values 20182019202020212022
Imports of Goods (million USD) 5,9255,8975,5707,7188,399
Exports of Goods (million USD) 2,8702,7162,5063,5594,309
Imports of Services (million USD) 2,3092,3941,3431,9962,513
Exports of Services (million USD) 3,6213,8082,5524,1175,019

Source: World Trade Organisation (WTO) ; Latest available data

Foreign Trade Indicators 20182019202020212022
Foreign Trade (in % of GDP) 76.876.359.876.085.3
Trade Balance (million USD) -3,381-3,517-3,420-4,514-4,467
Trade Balance (Including Service) (million USD) -2,070-2,103-2,210-2,392-1,960
Imports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) 2.42.3-19.831.513.1
Exports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) 4.02.6-27.952.07.5
Imports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 45.245.037.244.747.8
Exports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 31.631.322.731.337.5

Source: World Bank ; Latest available data

Foreign Trade Forecasts 20232024 (e)2025 (e)2026 (e)2027 (e)
Volume of exports of goods and services (Annual % change) 7.55.61.62.93.7
Volume of imports of goods and services (Annual % change) 11.54.41.73.44.4

Source: IMF, World Economic Outlook ; Latest available data

Note: (e) Estimated Data

 
International Economic Cooperation
Member of the IMF, the World Bank and the Council of Europe.
 

Main Partner Countries

Main Customers
(% of Exports)
2022
Italy 49.5%
Serbia 10.2%
Montenegro 7.9%
Greece 6.8%
North Macedonia 5.5%
See More Countries 20.1%
Main Suppliers
(% of Imports)
2022
Italy 23.4%
Türkiye 12.0%
Greece 10.1%
Serbia 6.3%
Germany 4.6%
See More Countries 43.6%

Source: Comtrade, 2023. Because of rounding, the sum of the percentages may be smaller/greater than 100%.

 
 

Main Products

4.3 bn USD of products exported in 2022
Ferro-alloysFerro-alloys 4.9%
Footwear with outer soles of rubber, plastics,...Footwear with outer soles of rubber, plastics, leather or composition leather and uppers of leather (excl. orthopaedic footwear, skating boots with ice or roller skates attached, and toy footwear) 0.7%
Men's or boys' shirts (excl. knitted or crocheted,...Men's or boys' shirts (excl. knitted or crocheted, nightshirts, singlets and other vests) 0.3%
Cucumbers and gherkins, fresh or chilledCucumbers and gherkins, fresh or chilled 0.2%
Electrical energyElectrical energy 0.2%
See More Products 93.7%
8.4 bn USD of products imported in 2022
Medicaments consisting of mixed or unmixed...Medicaments consisting of mixed or unmixed products for therapeutic or prophylactic uses, put up in measured doses "incl. those in the form of transdermal administration" or in forms or packings for retail sale (excl. goods of heading 3002, 3005 or 3006) 0.6%
Motor cars and other motor vehicles principally...Motor cars and other motor vehicles principally designed for the transport of persons, incl. station wagons and racing cars (excl. motor vehicles of heading 8702) 0.5%
Crustaceans, whether in shell or not, live, fresh,...Crustaceans, whether in shell or not, live, fresh, chilled, frozen, dried, salted or in brine, even smoked, incl. crustaceans in shell cooked by steaming or by boiling in water; flours, meals and pellets of crustaceans, fit for human consumption 0.4%
Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous...Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals (excl. crude); preparations containing >= 70% by weight of petroleum oils or of oils obtained from bituminous minerals, these oils being the basic constituents of the preparations, n.e.s.; waste oils containing mainly petroleum or bituminous minerals 0.3%
Parts and accessories for tractors, motor vehicles...Parts and accessories for tractors, motor vehicles for the transport of ten or more persons, motor cars and other motor vehicles principally designed for the transport of persons, motor vehicles for the transport of goods and special purpose motor vehicles of heading 8701 to 8705, n.e.s. 0.2%
See More Products 98.0%

Source: Comtrade, 2023. Because of rounding, the sum of the percentages may be smaller/greater than 100%.

 
 

To go further, check out our service Import Export Flows.

 

Main Services

Source: United Nations Statistics Division, 2023. Because of rounding, the sum of the percentages may be smaller/greater than 100%.

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Latest Update: February 2024