Ramush Haradinaj. | Photo: BIRN.

Haradinaj refuses to withdraw tariff, proposes ‘broader settlement’

Responding to EU High Representative Federica Mogherini and other EU officials, Haradinaj rejects the request to decrease tariffs for Serbian goods, and says that normalization has stagnated.

In a letter response addressed EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini, European Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmstrom, and European Commissioner for Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn on Saturday, Kosovo Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj said that the 100 per cent tariff increase for Serbian and Bosnian products will not be removed.

“The time is past when an issue such as this can be resolved in in isolation,” Haradinaj wrote, referring to the tariff.

The prime minister’s letter, obtained by Prishtina Insight, was sent as a response to a previous letter by EU officials, where Haradinaj was requested to withdraw the tariff in exchange for the possibility of representing the country as Kosovo* instead of UNMIK in the Central European Free Trade Agreement, CEFTA.

Haradinaj wrote that the results of the EU-mediated dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia have been minimal, and that a ‘broader settlement’ is necessary in order to void the tariff increase.

“Normalization of relations between Kosovo and Serbia has stalled completely. What is now needed is a new initiative to elevate the dialogue to a level where issues such as tariffs are subsumed into a broader settlement,” he wrote.

Haradinaj refers to a “Draft Comprehensive Agreement between the Republic of Kosovo and the Republic of Serbia” presented EU Special Representative Nataliya Apostolova last Thursday, saying that the Kosovo government’s intention is to build a basis for a legally-binding agreement between Kosovo and Serbia.

“I firmly believe that it is in the interest of all parties – Kosovo, Serbia, the EU and the wider international community, to take this opportunity to move forward with a renewed sense of ambition. There is nothing to be gained from further delay,” Haradinaj wrote.

Haradinaj will attend the third meeting of the Stabilization and Association Agreement, SAA, Council in Brussels this Monday, to review Kosovo’s progress towards the commitments of the agreement.

Read the full letter below.

Haradinaj’s letter sent to EU officials on December 15.
17/12/2018 - 14:58

17 December 2018 - 14:58

Prishtina Insight is a digital and print magazine published by BIRN Kosovo, an independent, non-governmental organisation. To find out more about the organization please visit the official website. Copyright © 2016 BIRN Kosovo.