Photo: BIRN.

Trucks with documentation containing ‘Republic of Kosovo’ enter from Serbia

The first lorries with documentation referring to the ‘Republic of Kosovo’ have entered the country from Serbia following reciprocal trade measures imposed by the former government.

Adriatik Stavileci, spokesperson for Kosovo Customs, has confirmed to BIRN that 20 lorries complete with documentation referring to the Republic of Kosovo have now entered the country from Serbia.

New reciprocal trade measures with Serbia were put in place on May 30 by the former government, requiring documents for agricultural and industrial products to carry the emblem and name of the Republic of Kosovo. Any documentation that “denies the independence and sovereignty of the Republic of Kosovo” is also prohibited.

No goods crossed the Kosovo-Serbia border until Wednesday June 3, but since then at least 20 lorries have now entered Kosovo from Serbia according to Stavileci, who stressed that all documents were in compliance with the Government Decision of May 30.

On Wednesday BIRN reported that 12 lorries were barred from entering the country as documentation did not comply with the government decision. “We refused entry to 12 trucks, six at the border crossing in Jarinje, and six others in Merdare,” Stavileci told BIRN on Wednesday. “The refusals have come as a result of the inconsistency of the documentation with point 1 and point 3 of the Government Decision.”

Reciprocal measures were initially introduced in March to replace the 100 per cent tariff placed on Serbian imports by the Haradinaj government in November 2018. According to Kosovo Customs, around 35 million euros worth of goods were imported from Serbia in April and May alone. 

However, the measures were then extended in a decision late on Saturday night by the then incumbent government. The extended measures drew criticism from EU Special Representative for the Kosovo-Serbia Dialogue Miroslav Lajcak and Serbian foreign minister, Ivica Dacic, who stated talks between Belgrade and Prishtina could not continue until the measures were removed.

New Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti stated on Sunday that he would “remove obstacles to the Dialogue,” a position that is also stated as a commitment in LDK’s governing agreement with Lista Srpska.

04/06/2020 - 16:01

04 June 2020 - 16:01

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