CONTEXT Improvement of the housing conditions of the population has always been one of the important questions of the Party's policy in the field of well-being. (Hoxha, 1981, 54)

DATA SOURCES There is as yet no abundance of available

hard data on Albanian housing. Although a wide range of sources have been employed in the compilation of this chapter, the overall picture necessarily remains incomplete. For example, annual (sic) statistical yearbooks were only published, irregularly, in the 1960s; from the 1970s qinquennial compendia have been the main general Albanian statistical source. Reports on five-year plans include no more than a short paragraph on housing, within a sub-section on social welfare provision, at best merely outlining the overall numbers of dwellings built, with little indication of the type, quality, distribution, supply and demand equation, allocation mechanisms or indeed any qualitative assessment of the housing situation. Regional monographs are irregularly produced, and while often useful, appear only to be available within the appropriate areas of the country, and are, of course, produced only in Albanian.