IBNA Special Report
Tirana, May 21, 2014/Independent Balkan News Agency
Albanian Institute of Statistics (INSTAT) publishes for the first time detailed analyses over the results of the last Census carried out in Albania three years ago.
The 2011 Census was carried out by the Albanian government, after the one carried out in 2001. It was supported by Swiss Cooperation and EU.
Detailed analyses of the registration aim at encouraging the use of quality research on policies and decision making in the country. Reports have been presented today in Tirana in relation to the economy, labor market, transport, migration, accommodation and urban and rural ratios.
Gjergji Filipi, head of INSTAT says that the analyses aim at pushing forward democracy and the strengthening of institutions, by making available information and statistics accurate and transparent.
He says that “this is the first time in the history of Census in Albania where there’s been an evaluation of the quality of data and the coverage of the 2011 Population Census, which certify the data where these analyses and others that will follow have been based”.
“These studies help at understanding the situation of Albania in the demographic, geographic, economic and social point of view. They help in identifying the positive and negative developments of a decade. Our hope is for these studies to help decision makers to easily discern the problems of the country and to draft efficient policies to solve them. We also hope that these studies will help actors in the public and private sector to identify Albania’s strong points in building a history of success”, says Filipi.
A public asset used by politics
Statistics are a public asset which must serve to the citizens and every interested group.
They cannot be part of the needs of the government for the next elections. Unfortunately, in spite of the professional work and the funding or projects which in cooperation with partners has been offered for this Institute, it’s been several years that the Institute of Statistics and statistics themselves are used in a political way. The opposition which today is in power, has in several occasions considered them as untrue, while the current opposition, used to praise the work of the government by referring to INSTAT statistics when it was in power.
Rama: Statistics must not be a hostage of daily politics
Prime minister Edi Rama talks in a political manner about this issue. He mentions the case of Greece, where according to him, the manipulation of data led to a serious crisis: “It’s enough to look at what the use of statistics for the interest of the government did to the neighboring country or what did the confrontation with the dramatic reality of the truths hidden in the official statistics did to society in the neighboring country”, said Rama, appealing that statistics must not be a hostage of the politics of the day, “like it’s been the case before”.
Trusted data must be the basis of decisions
Holger Tausch, the charge d’affaires of the Swiss Embassy and head of Swiss Cooperation suggests that a quality research and trusted data must be the basis of decision making processes.
“The research can support and improve the governance functioning by making it effective and efficient”, says Tausch.
He says that Albania has a variety of trusted data and figures in the 2011 Census. He mentions the information extracted by the survey of living standards and the thorough analysis of the Census data.
“These will be very important and useful for the government, in order to implement important reforms in all sectors”, says Tausch.
Clive Rumbold, EU charge d’affaires, says that assistance is being given to build a system of statistics which is in line with EU standards and which can accelerate the process of integration.
The next census is expected to take place in 2020. Some experts of statistics say that the results of the Census are not entirely real. Referring to the one conducted in 2011, experts say that the census posed several questions which many people didn’t understand. Some others related to details of the wealth of citizens and they refused to answer, fearing a tax burden. /ibna/