Prices in Albania increased at rates similar to the EU average, according to the harmonized index of consumer prices published by INSTAT, which measures the change in the level of retail prices of goods and services in terms of the structure of expenditures which the consumer ( domestic and foreign) are intended for final consumption in the territory of Albania.
The annual change measured by the Harmonized Index of Consumer Prices in February 2021 is 1.3%, the same as the European Union average. The largest increase of prices of 2.4% is observed in the group "Alcoholic beverages and tobacco", followed by the groups "Food and non-alcoholic beverages" by 2.3%, "Health" 1.7%, "Furniture, home appliances and maintenance" with 1.4% "Transport" with 1.1%, "Communication" and "Hotels, cafes and restaurants" with 0.7% each, "Various goods and services" with 0.6%, "Entertainment and culture" with 0.3%.
On the other hand, the prices of the group "Clothing and footwear" decreased by 0.8%, followed by the group "Rent, water, fuel and energy" by 0.3%. In February 2021, the monthly change measured by the Harmonized Index of Consumer Prices is 1.4%. This change was mainly influenced by the increase of prices of the group "Food and non-alcoholic beverages" by 3.5%, followed by the groups "Alcoholic beverages and tobacco" by 0.5%, "Transport" by 0.4%, Hotels, cafes and restaurants ”by 0.3%, etc. The group "Entertainment and culture" marked a decrease of 0.5%, followed by the group "Clothing and footwear" with a decrease of 0.4%, etc.
In February, Albania was tenth in price increases compared to European Union countries.
The publication of the Harmonized Index of Consumer Prices has been done by INSTAT since January 2017, thus giving a clear picture of the movement of retail prices in European countries and comparing the inflation rate between countries, in contrast to the Consumer Price Index which measures only official inflation in Albania.