Joint press release on the phone conversation between Chancellor Angela Merkel’s and Prime Minister Albin Kurti

Prishtina, 23 March 2020

Joint Statement by the Spokesperson of the Federal Government, Mr. Steffen Seibert and that of the Government of Kosovo, Mr. Përparim Kryeziu:

During the day, Chancellor Angela Merkel and Prime Minister Albin Kurti had a phone conversation.

During the conversation, they exchanged views on the close bilateral relations, the harmonization of Kosovo’s reforms with the European Union, and the situation in the region. Chancellor Merkel offered support to Prime Minister Kurti in the fight against corruption and the country’s broad and ambitious reform program. In this context, the Federal Republic offered specific advice from German experts.

The fight against the coronavirus was also discussed. The Chancellor promised to review support for Kosovo in dealing with this crisis.

It was also discussed about the European Union’s dialogue on normalizing relations between Kosovo and Serbia, as well as the tariff on goods from Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina set in 2018 by the then government. The Chancellor welcomed the proposed decision by the Prime Minister of Kosovo to fully abolish the tariff after 1 April, following the abolition of tariff on raw materials last week. It also supported a dialogue, led by the European Union, which should aim at removing all non-tariff trade barriers between Serbia and Kosovo. Both believe that there should be no obstacles to relations between Kosovo and Serbia.

The Chancellor and the Prime Minister Kosovo support resumption of the dialogue on normalization of relations between Kosovo and Serbia. The aim of this process remains to reach a legally binding agreement that ensures full normalization of relations and which serves the people of both countries.