Kosovo and Croatia conclude negotiations on FTA

Prishtinë, Sept 7, 2006 – Negotiations on a Free Trade Agreement between Croatia and UNMIK on behalf of Kosovo were opened and successfully concluded in Zagreb, a press release of UNMIK Pillar IV reads. “The discussions were held in a very friendly and constructive atmosphere, which resulted in the quick finalization of the talks.

“Both delegations agreed on a text and a series of annexes. Croatia recognised the specific economic situation of Kosovo and agreed to exempt certain goods it exports to Kosovo from liberalisation, while fully opening its market to imports from Kosovo. Importantly, milk, meat and processed vegetable products exported to Kosovo will not be exempted from customs duties. Customs duties for oil products, detergents and refrigerators will be phased out until the beginning of 2008. In agreeing on these exemptions, the Kosovo delegation managed to protect certain infant industries and buffer effects for the Kosovo Budget.”

Both sides agreed that this Agreement should still be signed in September. It is the fourth FTA negotiated between UNMIK on behalf of Kosovo – Agreements with Albania and FYR Macedonia are in force, the one with BiH is just waiting signature. The results of these negotiations will also be included in the ongoing negotiations on enlarging the Central Free Trade Agreement (CEFTA).