Abstract: The transition and integration of the Albanian economy in the EU constitutes a special valuable
experience that would be relevant for the present and future development processes of economic market in
general. Albania's e xperience in this regard carries two s alient features in the path of Euro-Atlantic
integration. First of all, the transition and economic integration in the EU began from scratch without
inheriting any element or experience of the market economy and democratic culture; secondly, it began as a
radical process conceived as “shock therapy”, which excludes a graduated process; thirdly, it started o ut as a
political process driven by upward and will continue as such until its completion. The created elements of
market economy and democratic culture are going on in parallel with the process of EU integration But the
lack of democratic culture has created more conflictual than consensual phenomenon that hinders and delays
the time of wider economic integration. Not surprisingly, Albania as the most fanatical and dictatorial
communist country in the past is the worst in the performance of th e integration process. Despite the time and
the problems we have “skipped” many stages of historical development of a democratic Western society and
with optimism, we are having more and more realistic difficulties and efforts still need to be done to reach the
standards of civilized Europe. Throughout this period precisely to achieve these standards we consider as a
transition, which will end as an economic process but also as a socio-cultural one, when we become a
member with full rights in the EU.
Keywords: Economic transition; Integration process; State property; Private property; The plann ed economy;
Market economy; Privatization p rocess; Administrative privatization; Privatization according to market
strategy; “Shock therapy”; Gradualism; Goods and services market; Capital market; Labour market
1. Instead of Introduction
The Albanian economy of socialist-communist period was an absolutely centralized and planned
economy. The core of this economy system was constituted by state properties, which represented all
the people‟s property or the highest level of its association. In the context of this property existed even
the cooperative property as the property of a certain group of agricultural workers in village, who
formally had the right to use a certain area of land from the state and were the only owners of the
product produced, but the tools of agricultural production were owned by the state.
At the core of this structure property relations, each element of private property was extremely
inconsistent and even hostile to it2. The absolute denial of privatization of property went up in
denatured and denial of certain elements of property and of individual labor in all economic activities.
The previous system prohibited and condemned not just any kind of small private property, but also
any kind of individual labor activity for personal or family profit. This represents an extreme and
1 Professor, PhD, Rector of Private Institution of Higher Education “Kristal'” University of Tirana, Albania, Address:
Freeway Tiranë – Durrës, Km 3, Tirana, Albania, Tel.: + +692085542, Corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org.
2 Annual Report of the IMF, since 1992.