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Albania(阿尔巴尼亚)

2010-04-23 11:50:13 作者:english88 来源:english88 浏览次数:0 网友评论 0

ALBANIA 
History   The Albanians are reputedly descendants of Illyrian and Thracian tribes that settled in the region that is of Albania today.  After being conquered by a number of nations, mainly the

ALBANIA

\History   The Albanians are reputedly descendants of Illyrian and Thracian tribes that settled in the region that is of Albania today.  After being conquered by a number of nations, mainly the Roman and Byzantine Empires, Illyria lost most of its original population and finally became a part of the Ottoman Empire in 1478 under the leadership of Gjergj Kastrioti Skenderbeu, the Albanian National Hero.  After the First Balkan War, Albania declared its independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1912, becoming a principality.  From 1928, the country was ruled by King Zog I until 1938 when it became a puppet of Italy.

The communists took over after World War II, in November 1944, under the leader of the resistance, Enver Hoxha.  From 1945 until 1990, Albania was isolated from the West and later even from the communist East.   In 1985, Enver Hoxha died and Ramiz Alia took his place. Initially, Alia tried to follow in Hoxha"s footsteps, but in Eastern Europe the changes had already started.  Mikhail Gorbachev had appeared in the Soviet Union with new policies (Glasnost and perestroika). The totalitarian regime was pressured by the US and Europe and the hate of its own people. After Nicolae Ceauşescu (the communist leader of Romania) was executed in a revolution, Alia knew he would be next if changes were not made. In 1992, the general elections were won by the Democratic Party with 62% of the votes.

Between 1990 and 1992 Albania ended 46 years of xenophobic Communist rule and established a multiparty democracy.

Geography   

Albania is a Mediterranean country in southeastern Europe. It Map of Albaniais bordered by Montenegro in the north, Kosovo in the north-east, the Republic of Macedonia in the east, and Greece in the south, has a coast on the Adriatic Sea in the west, and a coast on the Ionian Sea in the southwest.  Albania consists of mostly hilly and mountainous terrain, the highest mountain, Korab in the district of Dibra reaching up to 2,753 m. The country mostly has a land climate, with cold winters and hot summers.

Besides capital city Tirana, with 520,000 inhabitants, the principal cities are Durrës, Elbasan, Shkodër, Gjirokastër, Vlorë and Korçë.

Political System   

The head of state is the president, who is elected by the Kuvendi, or the Assembly of the Republic of Albania every 4 years. The main part of the Assembly"s 140 members is elected every 4 years. 100 of the parliament"s members are chosen by the people with a direct vote, while the other 40 members are chosen using a proportional system.  The head of government is the Prime Minister who is assisted by a council of ministers. The Council of Ministers is selected by the Prime Minister and to be approved by a simple majority in the Assembly.

Education System     The education system is presently undergoing major reform to bring it into line with European standards.  With 3,400 kindergartens across the country, the pre-school provides physical, mental, moral and aesthetic education to children aged between 3 to 6 years old.  It was estimated that some 59% of all children would attend kindergarten.  There is still a compulsory eight-year education, but it would be breakdown into 4-year primary education (6-10 years old) and 4-year secondary education (11-14 years old), and higher school education for 14-18 years old of students.   It is estimated that 70% of all Albania children would attend High school and 25% of high school graduates would be accepted into the universities. There are six universities in Albania today, with Tirana being the main one. The others are Shkoder, Korca, Vlora, Gjirokaster and Elbasan.  In addition there is an Academy of Fine Arts in Tirana.

Population   Albania has an estimated population of 3.6 million.  Most of the population is ethnically Albanian (95% of the population).  There is a Greek minority (3%).  Many ethnic Albanians live in bordering Kosovo (around 2 million), Macedonia (around 500,000), Montenegro (around 70,000), Serbia (over 150,000, mainly in southern Serbia).  There is a ethnic Albanian population in Greece which is not recognized by the Greek state, known as Çam, estimated 50,000 in the south epirus region (north-western Greece).

Capital    Tirana

Languages   The official language is Albanian.  Greek is spoken by the Greek minority in the south regions of the country. In the area of Gorë in the Kukës district is spoken a Slavic language called Gorani.  This is the only area in the world where this language is spoken. The village of Shishtavec is the main hub of the Gorani language.

Religion    Since the occupation by the Ottomans, the majority of Albanians have been Muslim (70%), even though religion was prohibited during the communist era. The Albanian Orthodox (20%) and Catholic Church (10%) are the other main religions in Albania.  20% of total Muslim population is Bektashi, people who follow a faith originating in the Turkish migrations into Turkey, and came to Albania through the Ottoman Janissaries.  It has outwardly Shi"ite Islamic elements, but is really a Shamanic-Pantheistic faith.

Economy  

Albania is one of Europe"s poorest countries, with half of the economically-active population still engaged in agriculture and a fifth said to be working abroad.  Albania is making difficult transition to a more modern open-market economy. The government has taken measures to curb violent crime and to spur economic activity and trade. The economy is bolstered by annual remittances from abroad of $600-$800 million, mostly from Greece and Italy; this helps offset the towering trade deficit. Agriculture, which accounts for about one-half of GDP, is held back because of frequent drought and the need to modernize equipment, to clarify property rights, and to consolidate small plots of land. Energy shortages and antiquated and inadequate infrastructure make it difficult to attract and sustain foreign investment. The planned construction of a new thermal power plant near Vlore and improved transmission and distribution facilities will help relieve the energy shortages. Also, the government is moving slowly to improve the poor national road and rail network, a long-standing barrier to sustained economic growth.  Albania’s growth in 2003 and 2004 was strong, the nation has important oil and gas reserves, and inflation is not a problem.

Currency -  Lek    

The Lek (currency code ALL) is the currency used in Albania.  The name derives from the popular abbreviation of Alexander the Great (Leka i Madh) and was introduced during the reign of Ahmet Zogu.  It is worth about 1 US cent or 1 Japanese yen.  (0.974 US cents as of 14 June 2005).

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