Kosovo Manufacturing Club, together with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Tirana, Kosovo Chamber of Commerce, Economic Chamber of North-West Macedonia and Albanian Union of Producers organized a joint conference “Opportunities and Challenges of Trade Relations between Kosovo and Albania” which was held within the framework of the PAN- Albanian Economic Forum.

This conference aimed at presenting and addressing the challenges and trade barriers that Kosovo and Albania’s producers face when trading their products in these two markets, but also the opportunities and facilitations offered to them by both governments.

Nagip Fejzi, Chairman of the PAN- Albanian Economic Forum, said at the opening of this conference that this is the right moment for the Albanian factor to spark the signals of the nationwide cooperation, and to start integrating these economies into a complementary economy. “The power for development is the slogan that runs this forum and together we will join for the development of all Albanians in the region,” he said.

During the presentation of the trade relations between these two countries, it was noted that the main obstacles for Kosovar exporters are non-tariff barriers, whereby in each export, the Albanian authorities require the original copy (or notarized copy) of the Quality Certificate for products subject to phytosanitary and veterinary control. Customs clearance procedures in Albania, payment of scanners, notarization of analysis, payment on the road tax of the Nation’s Road, non-receipt of invoice price by Albanian Customs, application of high excise rate, are some of the obstacles which increase the cost of production but also lower the level of competitiveness of Kosovo’s products in the Albanian market.

The head of the Manufacturing Club, Fejzullahu Mustafa, said that it is a pleasure for all businesses to be present at this meeting and to explore the possibilities of cooperation, but that pleasure would be much greater if we were today at the time of market liberalization in Albania. He mentioned many tariff and non-tariff barriers that manufacturers face in trade with Albania but with no other country.

Deputy Prime Minister Fatmir Limaj welcomed the formation of this Forum and expressed the desire for such meetings to intensify and to begin the concretization of cooperation between all parties. He promised to all businesses that he would be their voice and support at all meetings between governments, as businesses are the promoters of development. “The time of public and political spectacles has ended, it is time to concretize all the agreements that have been reached between the two governments,” he stated.

Present at the conference were representatives of businesses from both countries and representatives of both governments such as Albania’s Minister of Finance and Economy – Anila Denaj, Eduard Shalsi – Minister of State for Enterprise Protection in Albania, Endrit Shala – Minister of Trade and Industry of the Republic of Kosovo.