Over 12,000 Albanian newborns receive baby bonus in first half of 2019

Source: Xinhua| 2019-07-12 01:22:08|Editor: Mu Xuequan
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TIRANA, July 11 (Xinhua) -- A total of 12,481 Albanian newborns received baby bonuses in the first six months of 2019, the Albanian Telegraphic Agency (ATA) reported on Thursday.

According to ATA, the bonuses are offered to parents at all the country's maternity hospitals.

In September last year, the Albanian government unveiled its new social reform program, which entered into force on Jan. 1, 2019. Its aim is to encourage Albanian parents to have more children through a sharp increase in baby bonuses.

Under the reform program, there is a reward for the birth of every child, from 40,000 Albanian lek (374 U.S. dollars) for the first child to 120,000 Albanian lek for the third child.

The bonus is given to each family regardless of their economic status. Not only children born in Albania, but also those born to Albanian citizens abroad and registered in Albania are entitled to receive the bonus.

In the first five months of this year, a total of 1,946 babies born abroad have benefited from the bonus.

The number of newborns in Albania dropped to around 31,000 in 2017, down from 82,000 in 1990, according to the country's state statistical institute. (1 Albanian lek = 0.0092 U.S. dollar)