EU restores trade preferences with Kosovo

The autonomous trade measures, which enable free trade for Kosovo exportes in the EU market have been restored on December 30, 2011. Khaldoun Sinno, Head of the European Commission Liaison Office in Kosovo said that the decision is important for Kosovar businesses.

“This is an important decision for Kosovo businesses that export to the EU. Renewal of trade preferences will allow businesses a much easier access to EU markets and is expected to increase Kosovo’s exports to the EU, “said Sinno.

Autonomous trade measures apply to all Western Balkan countries and provide free of customs access in the EU market for almost all goods originating from the region. The main aim of trade preferences, which are set for all states that are part of the Stabilisation and Association Process, is to revitalize the economies of Western Balkan states through privileged access to the EU market. These trade preferences had been given to Kosovo in the past, but ended on December 31, 2010.

The European Parliament Regulation for the establishment of special trade measures for countries and territories that are part of or are included in the Stabilisation and Association P rocess to the European Union, was approved by the Council of the European Union on November 24, 2011. With this renewed regulation, almost all goods, not limited and originally from Kosovo, have a free of customs access in the EU market until the end of 2015. The regulation also has a retroactive effect, which means that exporters from Kosovo, who have paid duty to the EU states during 2011, will be paid back.

These trade measures provide a framework for the development of trade between the EU and countries in the region. They also encourage foreign direct investments and economic development. As EU countries are already the largest trading partner of Kosovo, the implementation of the autonomous trade measures would only advance the trade and export of Kosovo in the EU. In 2010, Kosovo’s exports to EU have reached a total of 147 million Euros.

/Telegrafi /