Integrimi Evropian

European Integration

Press Conference on Progress Report 2014

October 9, 2014

Prishtina, 10 October 2014 – Acting Minster of European Integration, Mr. Gëzim Kasapolli, held a press conference upon Progress Report release.

Full speech of Acting Minister, Gëzim Kasapolli:

Honoured,

The European Commission released, yesterday, the Enlargement Strategy and Progress Report 2014 for all Western Balkan countries.

In relation to Kosovo, the Enlargement Strategy highly appreciates the conclusion of negotiations on Stabilisation and Association Agreement and confirms the progress towards conclusion of visa liberalisation process.

Kosovo Government welcomes the Progress Report and considers that the Report presents the real and current situation in relation to 1 year developments in our country.

The Report marks a new momentum for intensification of structural reforms in our journey towards European Union Membership. The Government considers the Progress Report as a key roadmap in policy orientation towards strengthening of the rule of law, economic growth and increased citizens’ welfare.

We also hope that during the next 12 months, the Progress Report will not be used as a Swedish table by the position and opposition parties for their daily issues, but to serve as basis for development of rational and constructive dialogue between different stakeholders in our society in order to undertake profound economic, political, and social reforms.

Kosovo Government considers extremely important the fact that the Enlargement Strategy and Progress Report re-confirmed Kosovo’s European agenda, in concrete terms, by continuing to support the two key processes: Stabilisation and Association Agreement and visa liberalisation process.

Honoured,

Allow me to address some of the key findings of the Progress Report.

2014 was an election year; in June were held general national election. Kosovo showed that knows how to organise fair, free and democratic elections. CEC proved that it has professional capacity to organise quality elections, as well as law enforcement institutions proved their efficiency on bring before justice any individuals attempting to misuse the will of the citizens.

The institutions consolidation process left Kosovo for a long time without new institutions, which should have been constituted promptly, and obviously such situation has affected the overall social development in Kosovo in the second half of the year.
At the same time, I hope that yesterday’s release of Progress Report has made clear to the political parties the need for consolidation of institutions as soon as possible.

In regards to the fight against corruption and organised crime, the Report has confirmed that legal framework have continued to improve in Kosovo.  Investigative capacities of law enforcement institutions are strengthened further.

In 2013, Kosovo Police dismantled 7 criminal groups involved in human trafficking. Police cooperated in 21 cases of international investigation on combating narcotics.

The Government adopted the Strategy and Action Plan 2014-2018 on combating informal economy, money laundering and financing of terrorism.

Witness Protection Department within Kosovo Police is established, and currently comprises of 13 officials. Also, in September 2013, the Witness Protection Committee was established as well.

Since 15th of June, within Kosovo Special Prosecution, we have taken the lead by EULEX to handle cases of high level corruption and organised crime.

In the context of fighting terrorism, law enforcement institutions undertook an extensive operation with around 1000 police officers, which resulted in the arrest of 40 individuals. Kosovo has prepared the Law on prohibition of joining the armed conflicts outside state territory.

As for judicial system, the Report confirms that justice system institutions have effectively implemented the structural reform of 2013.

In order to further strengthen the independence of the justice system, the budget of Kosovo Judicial Council and Kosovo Prosecutorial Council was increased in comparison to 2013.

Currently, 68 Notaries and 14 Private Enforcement Agents are certified and licensed. The number of cases referred to Mediation Centres has significantly increased in comparison with last year, respectively 699 cases comparing to 104 cases in 2013.

In the field of public administration, the Government continued developing respective legal framework by finalizing the following Draft Laws: on Civil Service, on Administrative Procedures, and on Salaries of Senior Public Officials.

On the other hand, it is completed the drafting the Job Catalogue for civil service, after assessing all proposals submitted by Government institutions within the job classification process.

As for economic development, the Government continued implementing economic policies that contributed to the fiscal and macroeconomic stability. Economic growth reached 3.4% in 2013, in comparison to 2.8% in 2012. Gross Domestic Product per capita has increased from 2,799 Euro, in 2012, to 2,935 Euro, in 2013.

The trade deficit has decreased to 31.6% of GDP (2.5% less than in 2012). In 2013, the export of goods performed well by increasing for 6.34%. Foreign Direct Investments reached 4.5% of GDP, compared to 4.2% in 2012.

Honoured,

The Progress Report will serve as the core document for the Government of the Republic of Kosovo in continuation of comprehensive reforms in order to accelerate European Union membership process.

Finally, I would like to thank all political parties and institutions at central and municipal level for their contribution and work in the course of Kosovo’s European Agenda, as the result of which, our country has concluded the negotiations on Stabilisation and Association  Agreement and it is about to complete the visa liberation process.

Thank you for your attention, and now I invite you for questions and answers.

 

Last modified: August 12, 2022

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