Albania plans to spend 21.6 billion Albanian Leks on its Armed Forces this year or 9% more compared to 2010, daily Gazeta Shqiptare reports. Albania’s defense budget shrank by 7% in 2010, after a revised budget cut military spending by 5.2 billion Leks than the 25 billion ALL originally forecast. According to the ‘Open Data’ project, Albania’s biggest expenditures on its armed forces were respectively in 2006 and 2007 when the defense budget grew on average by 22% on the year.
Even in 2009, the year which Albania joined NATO, military spending scored a hike, growing by 17.4% compared to 2008. The increase of the budget came in fact as a result of the commitment of the Albanian Government to spend 2% of the country’s GDP on defense.