Prime Minister Edi Rama has stated that Albanians’ mass migration is not related to government performance but to the developed technology and Europe’s attractiveness. He added that those who blame government policies are either ignorant or they do it on purpose.
While presenting his government’s latest dubious anti-corruption draft-law to party supporters, Rama said:
“[…]we are in the middle of a continent, where very close to us lies the epicenter of the world health. Of course, a youngster, a 20-year old boy who lives in a village, who has a smartphone and with a single click gets to Kim Kardashian and Cristiano Ronaldo… it’s not easy to tell him to stay here ‘cos we will build Albania together and in 35 years it will be like Germany.”
Rama explained that Albania is not the only country to face migration. Some EU countries have the same issue, and their policies have not resulted successful in stopping the trend, he said. The prime minister then added:
“[…]whoever claims today that leaving Albania, leaving the region, leaving Europe is related to governance, either he does not understand a thing, or he is bitter. They understand it very well, but all they can do is pour venom. Albanians have left and will leave the country, they have returned, are returning and will return. What are we asking for? Enver Hoxha’s bunker?”
Gallup’s latest worldwide survey conducted between 2015 and 2017, 60 percent of the adult population wants to leave Albania. The country was ranked in the fourth place out of 152 countries worldwide according to people’s desire to leave their country.
Countries with slightly higher desire to migrate are Haiti (63%), Liberia (66%), and Sierra Leone (71%). When Gallup conducted the survey, Sierra Leone and Liberia were in the midst of an Ebola outbreak. War-torn Syria is ranked at 12th place (46%).
Albanians’ desire to migrate is four times higher than the world average, and it appears to be among countries suffering under wars, conflicts, famine and other disasters.
Experts consider high corruption, unemployment, low wages, and lack of rule of law, opportunities, and changes as the main reasons why people in the Balkans want to flee.
Transparency International has repeatedly ranked Albania among the most corrupt countries in Europe. Its score deteriorated in the last corruption index for 2018, with the country dropping eight more places. Albania is now the most corrupt country in the Balkans.