Kosovo: Privatization unlikely to end in 2006

Prishtinë, Jan 8, 2006 – Joachim Ruecker, Head of Pillar IV of UNMIK, had promised in his first days in the office, that most enterprises would be privatized until the end of 2006. This does not seem to be possible for Bujar Dugolli, Minister of Trade and Industry.

The KTA Board priorities are to unblock the Trust Fund, privatize more enterprises, and share the 20% of the sale price to the workers.

Some SOEs will continue to remain under KTA management until the end of the year, because they will have to wait for their turn to get privatized.

But, Minister of Trade and Industry and Deputy Chairman of the KTA Board, Bujar Dugolli, is skeptical that the privatization process will be concluded soon. “I wish it was true that 90% is privatized by April 2006. But according to the dynamic it is impossible. Perhaps it could happen by the end of the year,” said Dugolli.

On the other hand, the trust fund remains blocked, until the Legal Office in New York gives a green light for this fund to be used. But even then, only 20% of the fund could be used, while the other part would remain frozen. “The fund is kept in trust until the status of Kosovo is solved, but we want to use that limited part and with a strict control by the Banking and Payment Authority of Kosovo. This fund cannot be endangered. It should be used for the economic development,” said Dugolli.