The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
This paper reviews the developments in the social safety net system of Albania since the beginning of its economic adjustment program in mid-1992 through the third quarter of 1995. It shows that the social safety net system was quickly reformed, and that this allowed Albanian authorities to support the most needy groups of the population with income transfers. Notwithstanding the low administrative costs, the social safety net system is not financially sustainable. Expenditures are not balanced with revenues, and the gap cannot be closed in the short-run. Poor targeting of the benefits and administrative loopholes spur expenditures. Revenue growth is hindered by low compliance with the social security contributions. The paper concludes with some suggestions for addressing this issues.