President Trump’s envoy for the Kosovo-Serbia dialogue, Ambassador Richard Grenell is against Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti’s idea to abolish the tariffs on Serbian goods and introduce full reciprocity with Serbia in trade, economy and politics.
His spokesperson, Dick Custin told Radio Free Europe that Grenell, who is also the U.S. Ambassador to Berlin, wants Kosovo to abolish the tax without demanding full reciprocity.
“Kosovo should abolish the tariffs on Serbian goods, without reciprocity [measures]. Not just suspend them but completely abolish them […] The Ambassador does not support the idea of reciprocity,” Custin told RFE/REL.
The Haradinaj Government imposed 100% tariffs on goods imported from Serbia and Bosnia Herzegovina in November 2018, in response to Serbia’s undermining of Kosovo’s statehood and membership in international organizations.
The new prime minister, Albin Kurti has pledged to replace the tariffs with what he calls “full reciprocity with Serbia”, and restart the stalled dialogue. His statement has been received with criticism in Kosovo, with many claiming that Kurti’s pledge for full reciprocity is just a maneuver to justify his upcoming decision to abolish the tariff.
Haradinaj, now in opposition, called on the new prime minister to resist pressure and not to abolish the tariffs.