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Albania declared its independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1912, but was conquered by Italy in 1939. Communist partisans took over the country in 1944. Albania allied itself first with the USSR (until 1960), and then with China (to 1978). In the early 1990s, Albania ended 46 years of xenophobic Communist rule and established a multiparty democracy. The transition has proven challenging as successive governments have tried to deal with high unemployment, widespread corruption, a dilapidated physical infrastructure, powerful organized crime networks, and combative political opponents. Albania has made progress in its democratic development since first holding multiparty elections in 1991, but deficiencies remain. International observers judged elections to be largely free and fair since the restoration of political stability following the collapse of pyramid schemes in 1997; however, there have been claims of electoral fraud in every one of Albania's post-communist elections. The 2009 general elections resulted in no single party gaining a majority of the 140 seats in Parliament, and the Movement for Socialist Integration (LSI) and the Democratic Party (DP) combined to form a coalition government, the first such in Albania's history. The Socialist Party (SP) contested the results of the 2009 parliamentary elections and the 2011 local elections. Albania joined NATO in April 2009 and is a potential candidate for EU accession. Although Albania's economy continues to grow, the country is still one of the poorest in Europe, hampered by a large informal economy and an inadequate energy and transportation infrastructure.


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People And Society

Nationality
Noun Albanian(s)
Adjective Albanian

Ethnic groups
Albanian 95%, Greek 3%, other 2% (Vlach, Roma (Gypsy), Serb, Macedonian, Bulgarian) (1989 est.)
Note
In 1989, other estimates of the Greek population ranged from 1% (official Albanian statistics) to 12% (from a Greek organization)

Languages
Albanian (official - derived from Tosk dialect), Greek, Vlach, Romani, Slavic dialects

Religions
Muslim 70%, Albanian Orthodox 20%, Roman Catholic 10%
Note
Percentages are estimates; there are no available current statistics on religious affiliation; all mosques and churches were closed in 1967 and religious observances prohibited; in November 1990, Albania began allowing private religious practice

Population World Ranking: 137
3,002,859 (July 2012 est.)

Age structure
0-14 years
21.4% (male 337,364/female 303,669)
15-64 years
68.1% (male 996,666/female 1,043,472)
65 years and over
10.5% (male 148,151/female 165,345) (2011 est.)

Median age
Total 30.9 years
Male 29.6 years
Female 32.1 years (2012 est.)

Population growth rate World Ranking: 167
0.28% (2012 est.)

Birth rate World Ranking: 157
12.38 births/1,000 population (2012 est.)

Death rate World Ranking: 157
6.25 deaths/1,000 population (July 2012 est.)

Net migration rate World Ranking: 178
-3.33 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2012 est.)

Urbanization
Urban population 52% of total population (2010)
Rate of urbanization
2.3% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)

Major cities - population
TIRANA (capital) 433,000 (2009)

Sex ratio
At birth 1.11 male(s)/female
Under 15 years 1.12 male(s)/female
15-64 years 0.96 male(s)/female
65 years and over 0.89 male(s)/female
Total population
0.98 male(s)/female (2011 est.)

Maternal mortality rate World Ranking: 127
27 deaths/100,000 live births (2010)

Infant mortality rate World Ranking: 124
Total 14.12 deaths/1,000 live births
Male 15.7 deaths/1,000 live births
Female
12.36 deaths/1,000 live births (2012 est.)

Life expectancy at birth World Ranking: 61
Total population 77.59 years
Male 74.99 years
Female 80.49 years (2012 est.)

Total fertility rate World Ranking: 190
1.48 children born/woman (2012 est.)

Health expenditures World Ranking: 85
6.9% of GDP (2009)

Physicians density
1.146 physicians/1,000 population (2007)

Hospital bed density
2.92 beds/1,000 population (2007)

Hiv/aids - adult prevalence rate
NA

Hiv/aids - people living with hiv/aids
NA

Hiv/aids - deaths
NA

Children under the age of 5 years underweight World Ranking: 75
6.6% (2005)

Education expenditures
NA

Literacy
Definition
Age 9 and over can read and write
Total population 98.7%
Male 99.2%
Female 98.3% (2001 census)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)
Total 11 years
Male 11 years
Female 11 years (2004)

Unemployment, youth ages 15-24 World Ranking: 10
Total 35.5%
Male 41.6%
Female 27.1% (2001)


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  Albania (Tirana):


  GPS points from Albania (Tirana)

Gura Qarku I Tiranes

Serroj Qarku I Kukesit

Fahat Qarku I Dibres

Mal I Cerckes Qarku I Korces

Mali I Radhimes Qarku I Vlores

Bashkia E Corovodes Qarku I Beratit

Mal Vele Albania (general)

Kep Durres Qarku I Durresit




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