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Prime Minister Mustafa attended the central meeting of the Trieste Summit

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Trieste, 12 July 2017


Prime Minister of the Republic of Kosovo, Isa Mustafa, today attended the Trieste Summit where were present the leaders of several EU countries and prime ministers of the Western Balkan states.

At the central meeting where the Republic of Kosovo was represented by Prime Minister Isa Mustafa, were also present the Prime Minister of Italy, at the same time the organizer of the Summit, Paolo Gentiloni, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron, Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs of Great Britain Boris Johnson, as well as the EU High Representative, Federica Mogherini and other personalities.

Before the participants, Prime Minister Mustafa initially spoke about the importance of this initiative which has created an important perspective of cooperation and communication between the Western Balkan countries.

"I very much hope that this cooperation will prepare us in the way of our integration into the European Union, and I never see it as a form of temporary replacement of this path," said the prime minister.

Prime Minister Mustafa further emphasized the achievements and current developments in Kosovo.

"We in Kosovo are now in the phase of constitution of the Assembly of the Republic of Kosovo, after the June elections and the establishment of the new Government, but I am pleased to reaffirm that even after these elections there is a very clear orientation of citizens of the Republic of Kosovo on the European path and that the only option we see is this path, and we are supported by you to overcome this path.

We have managed to achieve good cooperation with the European Union during this period, we are now working on the implementation of the Stabilization and Association Agreement, we are working on the implementation of the Framework Agreement for European Union Programs, we have met 94 out of 95 visa liberalization criteria, and we hope that the last criterion will be fulfilled. This criterion has nothing to do with the context between Kosovo and Montenegro because Montenegro has been very correct and we are convinced that work has been done correctly but it is our internal affair and we consider that the process will be completed.

We are also very much interested to advance our country's economic cooperation with the Western Balkan countries. We see great interest in this regional economic space, either in attracting foreign investment in this area or in solving the unemployment problem that we in Kosovo face separately, because we have very high unemployment, especially for women and of young people. We also have structural unemployment which has occurred due to the change in the structure of the economy, but I can also say that in recent years we have also achieved a relatively high GDP growth of 4 percent for two recent years, ensuring that we can keep up with this economic growth, but also that we need to have better cooperation with other countries.

In the framework of this cooperation, we see the need to cooperate with the Government of Bosnia and Herzegovina in solving the visa problem so that we do not have any obstacles to the movement of people and goods with Bosnia. We also need to solve the problem with Serbia in recognition of certificates of phytosanitary goods, certificates of origin of goods and quality certificates. I take this opportunity to congratulate the new prime minister of Serbia, who is here, and also to express readiness to continue the dialogue with Serbia and resolve all issues through the dialogue process.

We also need to solve with Serbia currently the problem of energy and transmission which has remained unusable and in which we have investments of about 70 million euros with the support of the German government and the German Development Bank that we have implemented together with Albania.
I consider that through this cooperation we will come to solve the problem of competitiveness, which Kosovo has especially with competition in the European Union market, for what we need to support each other and to achieve higher successes. As we have supported the Transport Community Treaty, we appreciate that this treaty will be able to further increase the connectivity between our countries.

We have invested heavily in infrastructure, we want that the road we have built together with Albania, we will now connect with Serbia, and we will also function in a broader perspective. We want to cooperate with Macedonia, so that the investments that we have on the road to Skopje, also to conclude with the part of Macedonia, which will support this project, as the Prime Minister of Macedonia said on this occasion "said the prime minister.

In addition to regional cooperation, Prime Minister Mustafa has also mentioned new cooperation initiatives, seeking that cooperation continue in the field of science and technology.

"As far as the Transport Community Treaty is concerned, I would like to express the interest of Kosovo here that the seat of this treaty is in Kosovo, because so far we have managed to have no program headquarters that we have jointly implemented in within our cooperation with the Western Balkan countries.

 I see the great importance in continuing this cooperation, and I also consider the Chancellor Merkel's initiative regarding the IT Summit to be of great importance today, because we have an interest in implementing IT technology and making progress And I also see the interest of Kosovo, in the framework of our cooperation, to have cooperation also in the field of science and technology so that European and world achievements can be applied also in our countries, such as achievements in the economy, in order to reduce our emerging differences, which currently exist between our countries and other European Union countries.

I would like to thank you for the cooperation that we have had and to invite you to further support in all ways and with all the instruments, both you and the representatives of the European Union, "said Prime Minister Mustafa.

Today, in Trieste, Prime Minister Mustafa and the prime ministers of the Western Balkan countries, in the presence of European personalities, have signed the Transport Community Treaty, an important agreement for deepening cooperation between the countries of the region as well as in relation to the EU and the countries of it.

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