Kosovo to partially lift 100% tariffs on Serbian, Bosnian goods on March 15

By bne IntelliNews February 27, 2020

Kosovo’s new Prime Minister Albin Kurti announced on February 27 that the country will partially and conditionally remove the 100% tariffs imposed on goods imported from Serbia and Bosnia & Herzegovina starting from March 15.

The tariffs were imposed by the previous government led by Ramush Haradinaj in November 2018 due to political reasons. Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in 2008, but it is still not recognised as a separate country by Belgrade.

Kurti said that the move will be taken as a sign of goodwill and readiness to find a genuine resolution to economic, trade and political disputes with Serbia.

In the beginning the tariffs will be lifted only on raw materials from Serbia and Bosnia.

In return, PM Kurti called on Serbia to end its campaign against recognition of Kosovo's independence and to begin removing non-tariff barriers with Kosovo.

“If the Serbian side demonstrates genuine commitment to stop the unfriendly campaign and pledges to remove non-tariff barriers with Kosovo swiftly, then starting from April 1, the Kosovo’s government will completely lift the tariff on imports from Serbia and Bosnia for a period of 90 days,” the government said in the statement.

However, Kurti warned that if Serbia fails to comply with the Kosovo’s demands to eliminate economic, trade and political barriers then the government will start as of April 1 to gradually implement the principle of trade, economic and political reciprocity.

“If the Serbian party does not respond positively even after a period of 90 days starting from March 15, then the Kosovo’s government will recover tariffs as of June 15,” it said.

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said earlier in the day that it is only a matter of time before Serbia has to recognise Kosovo's independence, at least in practice if not officially.

Related Articles

Bosnia’s Republika Srpska halts all projects with China over coronavirus trade restrictions

Bosnia & Herzegovina’s Republika Srpska has temporarily put on hold all projects with companies from China due to trade difficulties following the coronavirus outbreak. The move was ... more

Energy Community says Bosnia, Serbia, Ukraine unlikely to meet 2020 renewables targets

Bosnia & Herzegovina, Serbia and Ukraine are unlikely to meet their 2020 renewables targets, while the situation in Albania, Kosovo and North Macedonia remains questionable due to the impact of ... more

European court rules Bosnia must enable elections in Mostar after 11-year break

The European Court of Human Rights ruled on October 29 that Bosnia & Herzegovina must amend its legislation to allow local elections to be held in Mostar after an 11-year ... more