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Kosovo Government asks for stake in decisions on Trepça

Prishtinë, May 20, 2006 - At Wednesday’s regular Government meeting, discussions focused on the situation of Kosovo’s mines the development of a political strategy on the restructuring of Trepça.

The Government asked for a veto right regarding decisions on Trepça. “At the last meeting, the Government decided to draft sustainable policies regarding the wealth of Kosovo’s mines, in particular of Trepça. It was unanimously decided that the Government should be represented and have a decision-making right on Trepça,” said Ulpiana Lama, the PM’s spokesperson.

According to Lama, the Government also required that the process of transformation of Trepça be transparent, in order for every decision to have the support of the public.

Lama said that the Government wants to solve the Trepça issue as soon as possible, as this problem remains unresolved. She pointed out that the Government considers Trepça as a crown jewel of Kosovo.

The “Shadow Government” of the PDK accused UNMIK Pillar IV and the KTA of mismanagement and manipulation with respect to Kosovo mines. The Head of the Department of Energy and Mining at the “Shadow Government “, Bajrush Xhemajli, said that the KTA Regulation aims at leading Trepça to bankruptcy.

“Since the post-war period, UNMIK Pillar IV has managed Kosovo’s mines, but poor policies have not led to a revival of the mines, rather a gradual degradation which will result in their ruin,” TVs and dailies quote Xhemajli as saying.

According to Xhemajli, the Trepça mines should not be privatised even after the status of Kosovo is solved, but they should be given a concession. “It is known that the World Bank and representatives of UNMIK Pillar IV consider mineral resources to be one of the three biggest sources of Kosovo’s economic wealth. They are key to Kosovo’s Consolidated Budget and should be used to help Kosovo become economically sustainable,” said Xhemajli.

Xhemajli also said that the appointment of an international administrator contradicts the KTA Regulation. “This Regulation aims to protect KTA staff and the administrator from probable charges and also acts in favour of Serbia,” said Xhemajli.

According to Xhemajli, this strategy was influenced by Serbia and is detrimental to Kosovo. ”It is clear that this strategy was devised under Serb influence and favours their claims on Trepça. It favours creditors and does not benefit Kosovo.” Xhemajli says it is not true that the € 75 million debts claims were invested in Trepça. “They could have bee used for the wars of the Serb regime in the territory of the former Yugoslavia,” he said.



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