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Byzantine Church - Berat

Promote economic integration to raise living standards.

Building a Better Balkans

October 2013, Number 04.04

“Southeast Europe economies lag behind developed Western economies. Living standards and incomes are relatively low, with average per capita GDP only 36 percent of the European Union average in 2010. The region reports the highest unemployment rates in Europe, averaging 24 percent in 2012, and in some countries exceeding 30 percent.

The past two decades have been especially challenging for people in Southeast Europe. The fall of the Iron Curtain resulted in drastic policy and economic change for former communist countries. Since the beginning of the transition process, the countries of Southeast Europe have made great strides in their transformation. The common objective has been integration into the EU and inclusion into the global economy. However, the transition to efficient market economies remains unfinished, and despite the indisputable achievements of the past two decades, challenges remain...”

Excerpt from Valbona Zeneli, “Building a Better Balkans,” per Concordiam: Journal of European Security Defense Issues  4, No. 4, 2013: 10-15.

This article reflects the views of the author and are not necessarily the official policy of the United States, Germany, or any other governments.