American Chamber of Commerce: Kosovo should allow Serbian imports, it’s harming our companies

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The American Chamber of Commerce in Kosovo has urged the Pristina government to lift restrictions on imports from Serbia, claiming that such a decision would also affect imports from American-owned businesses.

Following the arrest of three Kosovo police officers by Serbian forces on June 15, the Pristina government effectively halted Serbian imports. The police officers were later released, but the import ban was maintained by the Kosovo executive.

According to the American Chamber of Commerce, this decision has resulted in a 39 percent drop in imports from American-owned companies compared to the previous year, a worrying trend.

“The measure, which targets Serbia and products imported from this country, has an impact on international businesses. Many of these businesses are owned by companies from partner countries, including the United States, which has been a major supporter of Kosovo’s growth trajectory.”

According to data, the value of Serbian imports in June and July of this year was approximately 20 million euros, which was more than 50 million euros less than the same period the previous year.

According to reports, imports from Serbia are being replaced by those from other countries, primarily North Macedonia.

The American Chamber of Commerce has previously spoken out against trade barriers imposed by Kosovo on imports from neighboring countries.

“Good neighborly relations are essential for Kosovo’s Euro-Atlantic integration.” Unfortunately, the current measures contradict the calls of Kosovo’s international allies, who seek harmonious regional relations. As a result, the American Chamber of Commerce emphasizes that economic normalization between Kosovo and Serbia goes beyond bilateral interests.”

Every year, Kosovo imports an average of 5 billion euros in goods from various countries, while exports are less than 1 billion euros.