The Battle against Street Vendors – Whom Are We Fighting?

The Battle against Street Vendors – Whom Are We Fighting?

From August 2015, the Municipality of Tirana, under the newly elected Mayor Erion Veliaj, took the decision to vacate “illegally occupied” public spaces, taking several consecutive actions against street vendors. For more than a year, battle lines over street vending have reoccurred with perseverance and certainty. Around a total of seven thousand fines (vending violation […]

No, I Won’t Shut Up!

Luljeta Progni responds to Edi Rama's comment at the opening of Bunk'Art 2 that "those who spoke into the wind […] have the moral duty to visit it and shut up!"

No, I Won’t Shut Up!

I won’t shut up because you don’t have any right to appropriate the history of the Albanian families who suffered under the dictatorship. Their history isn’t told by showing the methods of persecution, the iron torturing tools, or the torn clothes of those who were interrogated hanging on the walls. Their history cannot be told through […]

Smearing the Image of a Failed Reform

Smearing the Image of a Failed Reform

When the Italian Gianni Rodari published his masterpiece The Adventures of Cipollino, he used a style that is rich with impersonations, but easily understandable: Cipollino (Little Onion) and his girlfriend Radish were oppressed toddlers, whereas Signor Tomato or Baron Orange represented the exploiting class. In this fantastic children’s story the characters had the function of metaphors, and the […]

Diaspora Summit, Empty Government Propaganda

Diaspora Summit, Empty Government Propaganda

The textile factory Two years ago a textile factory opened in Durrës. The factory was equipped with modern technology for the production of high-quality fabric for both import and export. In Albania it was the only factory of its kind, after the closure of the Kombinat textile factory in Tirana. It was built by three emigrants […]

The Albanian Left and Workers’ Compensation

The Albanian Left and Workers’ Compensation

According to INSTAT, there were about one million employed people in Albania by the end of 2015. Of those one million, 164 thousand are employed in public administration, 395 thousand in the private sector, and 444 thousand in the private agricultural sector. About 35% of the population is employed, among which 560 thousand or 20% […]

Traffic Congestion in Tirana – Living a Daily Nightmare

Traffic Congestion in Tirana – Living a Daily Nightmare

Living and commuting in Tirana during the last months has been particularly tough, if not desperate and harrowing, especially for drivers and public transport users. Congested roads are surely not a new phenomenon in chaotic Tirana. However, over the past four months, traffic jams have skyrocketed. One of the main reasons why there is more congestion […]

Trump, Democracy, and Growth

Trump, Democracy, and Growth

The United States have become the world’s largest economy by growing for over two centuries at a constant pace of close to 2% a year. They have done so thanks to their remarkable political institutions – the same institutions that will soon put Donald Trump in the Oval Office, while at the same time alarming the […]

“The Cowboy,” Another Painter in Albanian Politics

“The Cowboy,” Another Painter in Albanian Politics

Socialist Party Deputy for Shëngjin, Eduart Ndocaj, who for some time seemed to have disappeared from the Albanian chronicles, has all of a sudden reappeared with a new political initiative: the Party of Albanian Emigration (Partia e Emigracionit Shqiptar). Clearly underestimated by the Albanian political analysts, the “Cowboy” has temporarily left the Albanian scene in order […]

Albanian-Greek Relations: A Tragedy of Cacophony

Albanian-Greek Relations: A Tragedy of Cacophony

Tensions have risen between Athens and Tirana as Prime Minister Edi Rama stated, more or less, that Athens owes a lot to Albanian speaking population who had lived there throughout time; such as the rescue of the Acropolis by the intervention of the Archbishop Gjergj Dushmani. Rama’s statements have immediately raised the reaction of the Greek […]