Kosovo tariffs: No agreement yet on full revocation

No concrete agreement has been reached for Kosovo to fully lift the increased tariffs after Friday’s meeting in Pristina between Macedonian Economy Minister Kresnik Bekteshi and Kosovo’s Minister of Trade and Industry Bajram Hasani.

“Hasani and I have held a lengthy but very constructive meeting, where we were presenting arguments to elaborate our position on why it is necessary to fully revoke the tariffs. Even though the measure has been partially lifted for most produces, 21 in total, it is still in force for seven produces, including tomatoes, pepper, grapes, plums, apples, pears and raspberries. These goods are in fact one of the most traded between Macedonia and Kosovo,” Minister Bekteshi said after the meeting.

The Kosovo government, he added, will review Macedonia’s remarks at an upcoming session in a bid to seek a solution that is mutually acceptable.

“I personally believe that very soon we will resume our excellent trade cooperation in the interest of the farmers and the business community in the countries,” the Macedonian Minister noted.

The meeting came as a result of an official letter sent by Bekteshi to his Kosovo counterpart one week ago. It also followed the meeting of CEFTA countries in Belgrade, which welcomed the decision of the Kosovo government to partly lift trade barriers all the while urging Pristina to fully revoke tariffs for the remaining produces.

On July 18, Kosovo introduced tariffs increased by 30% as a temporary three-month measure aimed at countries that export goods to the country’s market.