Albania has noted the largest regression in the region in terms of corruption over the last year.
This year’s Balkan Barometer showed that the perception of corruption has increased significantly across all nine indicators in 2019 when compared with 2018.
The survey is conducted the Regional Cooperation Council and examines the perception and expectations on life and work, prevalent socio-economic, political trends and European integration in the Western Balkans.
Albania has the lowest level of confidence in its institutions with 90% of respondents believing that the justice system and politics are corrupt. This is higher than the regional average. 80% of Albanians think that customs is corrupt, 77% that the health services are corrupt. They have slightly more faith in the army, religious organisations and NGOs.
Almost half of the population surveyed (45%) reported paying bribes for medical care, in particular payments to doctors ranked highest in the region.
20% of respondents said they had paid a bribe to a member of the judiciary and 16% to the police. Again, this is higher than the regional norm which was between 1-4%
The country did make some progress though, in the area of municipal services. Those that said they experienced corruption at the Municipality fell from 13% in 2018 to 8% in 2019.
Overall, results show a growing distrust against national institutions and governments. The vast majority of respondents thought that corruption was rife in these areas.
Just 59% of respondents across the Western Balkans said they believed that EU membership was a good thing.