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The best land in Albania is located in the valleys pictured in the previous
slide, but population growth and the relatively high percentage of the
population engaged in agricultural production has increased pressure on
the land, especially since only 21% of the land in the country is arable.
People in the higher altitudes live in dire poverty, as in this village
in the mountains of Southern Albania. The soil on the limestone outcroppings
is very thin and hard to farm. Grazing, meanwhile, demands a lot
of pastureland and is very taxing on the soil. Land has been in high
demand in Albania, especially since being privatized, meaning that pastureland
once used communally for grazing is now in private hands. This has
contributed to ethnic tensions in the country as the Albanian majority
has vied for control of the land against the minority Macedonian and Greek
populations in the South.