Kosovo to lift tariffs on Serbian products

An elderly man passes by the 'NEWBORN' monument during a ceremony to mark the 12th anniversary of Kosovo's independence in Pristina, Kosovo. EPA-EFE/VALDRIN XHEMAJ

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Kosovo will abolish 100% taxes imposed on import of raw material from Serbia and Bosnia Herzegovina on March 15, Kosovo’s prime minister said on Thursday.

Albin Kurti, who took office earlier this month, termed the move as “a sign of goodwill.”

“It is a sign of readiness for a trade and economic agreement with Serbia. We urge Serbia to commit itself to stopping the de-recognition campaign against Kosovo,” the prime minister said.

He said if the Serbian side does not respond positively, the tariffs will be reimposed from June 5th.

In 2018, Kosovo imposed 100% customs duty on products imported from Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The move was part of efforts to make Serbia recognize Kosovo’s independence. It marked the end of talks between the two countries initiated by the EU in 2011.

Over the past two years, Kosovo ignored repeated calls from the EU and the U.S. to withdraw the tax.

Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in 2008 but Belgrade insists the country is one of its provinces.

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