ILDA HOXHA

Albania’s exports to China have marked in increase in 2022 by 67%. INSTAT official data, after being processed by Faktoje, showed China of “taking” ores, chromium, and copper concentrates from our country. Increase of export figures was recently announced even by the Chinese Ambassador to Albania, Mr. Zhou Ding thus describing it a friendship indicator between the countries.

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“In the first quarter of this year, Albania’s exports to China increased by 60% compared to the same period last year. Such news is encouraging and show no negative effects in Albania at all thus being a country that Chinas has had a traditional friendship with.

Diplomats do not feel right when see the war going on; I wish everything ends very soon. China is playing an active role in war inciting negotiations between the parties” stated Chinese Ambassador  to Albania Mr. Zhou Ding in April this year.

Faktoje decided to make a verification regarding this statement and addressed a request for information to the General Directorate of Customs.

Request for information sent to GDC, 16 May 2022

The response of General Directorate of Customs showed an increase of exports to China.

Response of the General Directorate of Customs to Faktoje

Results of the processed data by Faktoje showed an 28% increase of exports in 2022 compared to the first quarter of 2021.

Table processed by Faktoje based on the data of General Directorate of Customs

The table shows that 98% of products exported in 2021 are: ferro-alloys, ores and copper concentrates, ores, and chromium concentrates.

Table processed by Faktoje as for GDC data

Ninety-nine percent of products exported to China in 2022 are: ores and chromium concentrates, ores and copper concentrates and footwear.

Table processed by Faktoje, referring to GDC data

We also referred to INSTAT data aiming to check the level of Albania’s exports to China in the first quarter 2021 and 2022.

According to INSTAT figures processed by Faktoje, China is the sixth country to which we export and according to such data the value of exports in ALL, not in quantity, is increased by 67%. Hence, the figure matches the statement of the Chinese ambassador to our country.

Table processed by Faktoje, referring to INSTAT data

However, both tables processed by Faktoje based on data taken from the two institutions, i.e., the General Directorate of Customs and Institute of Statistics showed a discrepancy of figures. Aiming to understand the differences between GDC and INSTAT figures, we noticed that 2022 figures are the same for INSTAT and GDC. Meanwhile, 2021 figures differ from INSTAT to DGC thus amending the indicator, i.e., decreasing the export figure from 67% (provided by INSTAT) to 28% (provided by the General Directorate of Customs).

We addressed to the General Directorate of Customs again to clarify where the problem lies as regards the figures reported for 2021 and why they do not match with INSTAT data. We are waiting for its response.

*This content is produced as part of the regional initiative Western Balkans Anti-Disinformation Hub