IBNA Analysis/ Leader of the Democratic Party, Lulzim Basha, leader of Albanian opposition, analyzes the performance of economic indicators in the country. He demands to the government to immediately start talks with the hunger strikes, which he says have been caused by “violation of the law and arrogance of Edi Rama”
By Lulzim Basha
Ahead of the much anticipated decision of the European Union for Albania’s candidate status, Edi Rama, morally ruined by the shocking truth of drug traffic by closing an eye and through government involvement, is demonstrating his Stalin like concepts on justice, law, objection, protests and strikes of the free citizens.
The prime minister and his government continue to ignore the two hunger strikes, which are and more critical in their length and being held in Tirana by representatives of the association of the people unlawfully laid off and by former political dissidents.
The prime minister and the ministers of his cabinet have offered and continue to offer all kinds of alibis in order to avoid the numerous individual, social and human problems of the strike of the people who have been laid off.
They constantly avoid their electoral promises for the compensation of the former political dissidents and their provocation in waving the symbol of the dictator, causing the start of this strike with the commitment to go to the end of this cause.
The government must immediately establish dialogue with both strikes, examine without further ado and objectively the nature of the request of the employees who were laid off and to reflect about them according to the law, to face former political dissidents, to explain to them the promises that he made and why he isn’t keeping them.
Once again bad news from the economy. The deterioration of its indicators has continued during the month of April. The official figures of last month, in spite of the known tendency of the government to improve them through propaganda, clearly confirm its daily and consecutive failures of Rama-Meta government in this domain.
Tax on profit for the period January-April 2014 is 7.950 billion ALL or 550 million ALL less than the 8.5 billion ALL forecast of the government. It’s well known that during this period, the increase by 50% of the tax on profit, objected by the business and opposition came into effect. They were sealed by the votes of the Rama-Meta majority in parliament. Based on the new rate, incomes from the tax on profit should have increased at least 50%, but in fact, they have dropped 23% compared to the same period of last year, when the flat tax was in power.
What happened? Where did the 27% end up? Evasion and government corruption, drop and economic contraction-this is the explanation. All of this accompanied with fewer jobs, less employment and with fewer revenues from individuals and families, more difficulties, poverty and misery for hundreds of families that are fed by the private sector.
Excises for the first 4 months of 2014 result to be over 2.2 billion ALL less than the plan announced by the government itself (19.6% less) and at the same time, almost 1.3 billion ALL less than the period January-March 2013.
The government has planned an annual increase of 18.4% for incomes relating to taxation and customs. For the period January-April 2014, the figures show that the performance is 32% weaker compared to the government forecast.
Tax on personal incomes for the period January-April is 284 million ALL short of the forecasted figure or 949 million ALL less than the same period of the previous year.
Month after month, compensation of owners continues to hit new historical lows. During the first four months of 2014, the government has collected 36 million ALL, while it had forecasted to collect 10 times more. On the other hand, if we compare the performance of the government in the first four months of 2014 with the performance for the same period of last year, we will notice that the 625 million ALL of the period from January to April 2013 is 17 times higher than the period from January to April 2014. 17 times worse.
Total expenses for the period from January to April 2014 result to be 15 billion ALL less than the government plan for this period. During this period, the government was planning to pay 300 million ALL for former political dissidents, but only 15 million ALL have been paid or 20 times less. On the other hand, if we compare it with the same period of the previous year, where during the period from January to April 2013, the democrat government had paid 1.446 million ALL, this shows that the previous government has paid 96 times more than the government of Renaissance. And this is where Rama must look for the causes of the anger of this class of society, of the hunger strike, on his promises that he hasn’t kept, on his demagogy and on the insult that he does to them.
Public investments through domestic funding for the period January-April 2014 result to be over 2.4 billion ALL (24 million USD) less than the government plan for these four months, while they result to be almost 13 billion ALL *around 130 million USD) less than the period from January to April 2013.
Total public investments (with domestic and foreign funding) for the period January to April 2014, result to be 31 million USD less than the government plan for this period and over 15 billion ALL (150 million USD) less than the period from January-April 2013. If we also add to this value the lower amount paid by the current government during the period October-December 2013, then for the period October 2013-April 2014, the socialist government has spent around 230 million USD on investments compared to the same period of the previous year.
The process of privatizations continues to remain blocked. During the first four months of 2014, incomes from the process of privatization is only 2 million ALL, compared to 229 million ALL of the same period last year, thus 115 times less.
To conclude this cascade of hopeless facts, total lending for the economy in the month of April is 2,2% lower than the same period of last year, where lending for businesses is 3,2% lower.
This is the gloomy picture of the deterioration, of the fall and unstoppable decline of the economy under the Rama-Meta governance. This will continue to remain at the center of attention and our opposition based on figures, undeniable facts and convincing arguments that will continue to be made transparent for the citizens.
But, now, the so called “Renaissance” has proven itself a mockery for all Albanians, a mockery that continues on a daily basis in the form of a daily demagogy of the incompetent and irresponsible prime minister, a mockery which can be digested by nobody, which will come back to him in the form of refusal and objection by all free Albanians who refuse to be lied to and be happy with the “empty spoon” of the Renaissance which turned out to be as the biggest lie in the history of democratic Albania.
** The opinion of the author doesn’t necessarily represent IBNA’s editorial line