Kosovo to further liberalize trade relations

Prishtinë, 27 Jul, 2006 – The business community in Kosovo requested yesterday to look into possibilities for the government to support the development of businesses and compile the necessary legislation, a local Kosovar television reported.

Representatives from the Ministry for Trade and Industry of Kosovo and those from the Kosovo Chamber of Commerce requested the business community to present a list of products that should be protected so that they do not enter Kosovo without customs duties.

According to Minister for Trade and Industry of Kosovo, Bujar Dugolli, progress in trade is being made in Kosovo, although it is not a state yet.

The Head of the Kosovo Chamber of Commerce, Besim Beqaj, said there should be a possibility for Kosovo businesses to get support of the Government in free trade and that the new customs code is good for Kosovo businesses.

“The business community does not impede the liberalization of the market and FTAs. However, the possibility of governmental support for businesses should be looked into,” stated Beqaj.

Customs Service officials said the new customs code is completely unified and in accordance with EU standards.

“Opening customs storages not only for the traders who want to compete in the entire region, but also for foreign investments in Kosovo are possible with it,” stated UNMIK Customs Officer Shkelzen Mustafa.

Minister Dugolli spoke about the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Bosnia and Herzegovina, which is expected soon and that Kosovo experts are currently discussing with Croatian experts in Brussels about the possibility of an FTA between Kosovo and Croatia.

Kosovo is participating in the second round of negotiations on the CEFTA enlargement and modification, which is currently taking place. The draft agreement was reviewed during the first round of negotiations and the parties agreed to discuss the CEFTA Secretariat during the second round.