The upcoming Albanian census, the first since April 2011, has been postponed indefinitely, apparently due to a failure in the tender to buy iPads which would be used for door-to-door information gathering.
The last census received widespread criticism for inaccuracies, particularly relating to minorities resulting in them loosing out on valuable resources allocation. Critics say that it significantly undercounted ethnic minority groups such as the Roma and Egyptians.
2020 was supposed to be the year of the next census but it was delayed until 2021. Then in 2021, it was delayed again because of the parliamentary elections.
On Thursday (25 August), INSTAT announced that the census would be postponed again from October 2022 until some time next year without specifying a date.
“In the conditions of non-provision of the necessary means for the collection of information in the field, it is impossible to carry out this activity,” the statement continues.
The means referred to are iPad tablets and batteries, which would be used to carry out the census. A tender was opened in March 2022, and after receiving no interest, the conditions were loosened. But it appears it still failed.
This is the first time Albania planned to use electronic equipment of this type during the census process. The first census was held in 1923, with 11 being held since then.
The registration of the actual population as well as the settlements of the actual population is of great importance for the planning of public investments, for budget allocations for public services, such as kindergartens, schools and health services.