Albanians in Sweden are a growing community with a long history of migration. They make up a small portion of Sweden’s population, but they have impacted Swedish society for the better. In recent years, the number of immigrants from Albania has been increasing.
This is a result of both political unrest in the Balkans and economic factors. Because of this, Albanians are now one of Sweden’s largest immigrant groups. Even though they experience issues like discrimination and unemployment, they have made a significant contribution to Swedish culture.
Albanians in Sweden – a rapidly growing community
One of the immigrant communities that is expanding the fastest is the Kosovar community, whose numbers have recently reached all-time highs. Most have traveled to their Nordic neighbor on work-related visas from Kosovo, and very few from Albania. Others who requested asylum eventually received documents. Many others have chosen to remain in the country. Usually working towards establishing roots in Swedish society.
Most of the immigrants who make up the Albanian diaspora are educated. Most of them actively participate in important European industries. Finding work in the IT sector in particular. Regardless, a vast number of them still work at least part-time jobs and give back to the community.
They have successfully integrated into Swedish society while still maintaining their own culture and traditions. Albanians have proven to be versatile and adaptable. They are people with a strong work ethic. This has enabled them to be successful in integrating into Swedish society while still maintaining their cultural identity and traditions.
While the number of Albanians living and working in Sweden is unknown, Kosovo’s Diaspora Ministry has stated that the number of ethnic Albanians ranges from 150,070 to 182,000.
It’s not all rainbows and unicorns
Albanians pose a notable threat when it comes to the crime rate. That doesn’t mean, per se, that we’re the only ones committing crimes. However, for such a small number of immigrants in Sweden and most Nordic countries, we sure know how to get noticed.
For example, on July 19, 2019, law enforcement from Sweden, Albania, Denmark, and Germany joined forces to take down an Albanian drug trafficking organization operating throughout Western Europe. This notorious gang was primarily known for trafficking heroin and cocaine across Albania, Sweden, the Netherlands, and Germany. To further facilitate their operations in Copenhagen alone, they utilized cars with Swedish documents on at least 50 occasions.
There’s hope for change
It is unfair to make generalizations, as Albanians are more than capable of taking on any job they choose—not just those deemed “dirty” or criminal. A notable example is that the Swedish football leagues have two Albanian football teams. Albanska Fotbolls Föreningen (Albanska FF) and Rinia Idrottsförenig (Rinia IF) have become staples in the competition.
Another thing worth mentioning is Radio Dituria, a Borås-based radio station that celebrates and promotes the culture, customs, and traditions of the Albanian community. This is a way to say that it serves as a radio and television voice for many immigrants and other communities as well.
Kosovar Albanian migrants founded the Albanian association. The latter is a cultural association established by Albanians living and working in Sweden. Its aim is to help most of them connect with each other, participate in cultural events, and more.
Development cooperation between Sweden and Albania
An overarching aim of Sweden’s reform efforts in Albania is to help the country apply the necessary reforms needed to ultimately become part of the European Union. Since 1998, Sweden has been a donor to Albania.
The strategy used by the Swedish government for its development partnership with Albania follows the government’s 2021–2027 initiative for reforming cooperation between the Western Balkans and Turkey. The four primary focus areas of this strategy are:
- Equality for all individuals, democratic governance under the rule of law, and respect for fundamental human rights are essential components of a just society.
- Harmonious and inclusive communities that embrace diversity.
- Achieving a sustainable future for our planet through the management of natural resources and environmentally sound development.
- Creating an economy that benefits everyone is essential. By committing to inclusive economic development, we can ensure our communities thrive and grow sustainably for the benefit of all.
In other words, Sweden wishes to assist Albania in its pursuit of European democratic and economic standards.By doing this, Sweden hopes to help the Albanian population improve their lives and create a more prosperous future. This is done by providing support for an inclusive and sustainable economy as well as equal rights for all individuals.
Albania and Sweden now
Sweden is committed to assisting Albania through this development aid. In order to make Albania more stable, they want to help it realize its full potential. The Swedish government is taking an important step by supporting Albania’s transition to Europe. Proactively ensuring that we have access to higher living standards.
This effort includes funding for initiatives that support social welfare, healthcare, environmental sustainability, and education.
Albanians in Sweden are one of the ethnic groups in the Nordic country. They aim to include them and make their transition easier. Sweden’s Migration Agency provides advice and support to those seeking to move there. In order to integrate people, language courses and job-seeking initiatives are some of the best tactics.
In Sweden, the capital city or urban areas typically have the highest concentration of Albanians. The prime destination for those who seek to get employed with a work visa is Stockholm.