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CFO survey in Albania and Kosovo

Signs of optimism


„It becomes clear from this survey that companies have overcome the initial shock of the economic slowdown and short – term liquidity pressures“

- Elvis Ziu,
CFO Programme Leader, Albania and Kosovo.

Tirana, 20 February 2014 – One of the key insights to be gained from the second edition of the Deloitte CFO Survey for Albania and Kosovo, which overall is considered to have a much more positive outlook than the last survey conducted, is the necessity for companies to make new investments and refresh revenue streams.

Moreover, in light of the GDP growth of (3%) in terms of macro-economic forecasting, which went beyond expectations of Albanian CFOs as well as unemployment forecasting which according to the CFO’s decreased (from 53% to 33%), it appears that companies have adopted an approach which puts cost cutting and liquidity as more of a secondary priority.

“It becomes clear from this survey that companies have overcome the initial shock of economic slowdown and short-term liquidity pressures. As companies adapt to the challenges of this new reality, it has become clear that medium to long – term sustainability will depend on sound decision making on investments and effective “go to market” strategies”, said Elvis Ziu, CFO Programme Leader, Albania & Kosova.  

As for the 2014 economic growth in Albania, according to CFOs forecast survey for Albania and Kosovo, it shows that the stagnation and moderate growth (with only 3.4% of CFOs expecting recession) are the main expectations while most countries in Central Europe (Czech Republic, Croatia, Hungary, Serbia, Bulgaria, Bosnia and Slovenia) believe in growth between 0 and 1.5 %. On the other hand, CFOs in Central Europe are expecting the growth to exceed 3 % in countries such as Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and Kosova.

“As credit is expected to become more available in the short to medium term, companies are beginning to take a longer – term view of their business strategies, including finding growth or efficiency opportunities through mergers and acquisitions”, said Elvis Ziu.

Having this in mind, according to Mr. Ziu, in the near future, companies are expected to take a more structured approach to risk management due to the fact that they remain cautious about the effect of market conditions.

On the other side, CE CFO Survey has compared the top priorities over the next 12 month by country by putting them in three different groups:

  • Growth seeking – which includes the largest economy of the region: Poland, Czech Republic, Romania, Hungary, Croatia and Lithuania were factors like austerity, cost control and improving liquidity are out and expansion priority are clearly in.
  • Stability seeking – includes countries located in the south of the region: Bulgaria, Albania and Serbia which are seeking revenue in current markets but CFOs expect stagnation in all these markets.
  • Cost advantage – seeking - list of countries which is accompanied by three disparate priorities: revenue growth from existing markets in Latvia, direct cost reduction in Bosnia and Herzegovina and revenue growth from new markets in Slovenia.  

Also, when it comes to availability for the new credit for companies, the situation is different in Slovenia and Romania where 79% respectively 59 % is difficult to access credit while in Hungary has improved notably comparing to last year.

As for Albania and Kosovo the situation is similar (63% normal access in credit) as in other countries such as Czech Republic and Slovakia (79 % normal access in credit), Bosnia and Herzegovina (69 % normal access in credit).

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Elvis Ziu
Deloitte Albania and Kosova
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