Retail Trade, Services, and Tourism
Retail shops and service businesses opened all over Albania after the communists surrendered control of domestic trade and released their stranglehold on private economic initiative. Thousands of fruit and vegetable mongers converged on the streets of towns and cities. Private entrepreneurs bought out formerly state-run stores and restaurants and threw open the doors to new shops and workrooms. Import restrictions and price controls on food stimulated a lively black market. The Albanian Stalinists' aversion to the outside world had stunted the development of a tourism industry. From 1991, however, the government worked desperately to attract foreign visitors to replenish its hard-currency coffers.
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