TIRANA, Nov. 10 (Xinhua) -- The European Commission (EC) expects the Albanian economy to grow 4 percent in 2017, according to its Autumn 2017 Economic Forecast for EU member and candidate states released on Thursday.
The forecast is in line with the growth projected by the Albanian government.
The EC report said Albania's economic growth was influenced by foreign investments in the energy sector and domestic demand due to wage increase and employment growth.
"Foreign direct investments in the energy sector are at a peak, resulting in an acceleration of economic activity in the current year. Exports continue growing at a fast pace, benefiting from expanding tourism and the strengthening economies of key trading partners," the report said.
It noted that the economic growth strengthened in the first half of 2017, with investment and exports being the main contributors.
"Gross fixed capital formation strengthened to 12.9 percent growth, reflecting the peak period of foreign direct investment in the Albanian section of the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) and a large hydropower project," the report said.
The TAP project, announced in 2003, will see natural gas transported from Greece to Italy via Albania and the Adriatic Sea, and further in Western Europe.
The EC stressed that consumer confidence in Albania has improved while employment was rising.