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TRADE EXCHANGE OF KOSOVO WITH BALKAN’S REGION COUNTRIES

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Author(s): Myrvete BADIVUKU-PANTINA | Muje GJONBALAJ

Journal: Scientific Annals of the Alexandru Ioan Cuza University of Iasi : Economic Sciences Series
ISSN 0379-7864

Volume: 2010;
Issue: Special;
Start page: 223;
Date: 2010;
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Keywords: Kosovo | imports | exports | CEFTA | integration.

ABSTRACT
Kosovo, within the ten years period, has moved from a post conflict country to a country considered to be in transition. Kosovo has passed from its determination for reconstruction of the country to the orientation towards economic development and integration to European structures. But economic development is not yet sufficient in order to address challenges that Kosovo is facing, such as high percentage of unemployment and high trade deficit. Trade exchange in Kosovo during 2007 arrived at 1.6 billion Euros or 67% of Kosovo’s Gross Domestic Product, an indicator which is higher than in any of the South East European countries and proves a realization of wide efforts for an open market economy and international trade approach. In fact in 2007 import of goods in Kosovo arrived at 1.5 billion Euros, marking an increase of 20.8%, while exports arrived at 96.4 million euro, marking also an increase of 35.2 % in comparison to 2006. While, imports coverage by exports improved in 2007 to 6.4%, up from 5.7% in 2006. Within the framework of trade liberalization and integration with the countries in the region, during 2006, Kosovo finalized two new free trade agreements (with Bosnia & Herzegovina and Croatia) and revised the existing free trade agreement with Albania. All these agreements entered in force by the end of the year. During December 2006, Kosovo and all the coun-tries in the region signed the new amended CEFTA 2006 (Central European Free Trade Agreement), which as a regional free trade agreement integrates all the existing bilateral free trade agreements among countries in the region. For Kosovo, the new CEFTA 2006 increases the number of countries with a free trade agreement from four to seven. The main aim of the new CEFTA 2006- promotion of the investments in the region is expected to support the growth of exports, which remains the main goal of trade policy for Kosovo. The purpose of this paper is to present the importance of trade cooperation of Kosovo with Balkan’s region countries, as well as to analyze weaknesses and advantages that this cooperation has for economic development of Kosovo.
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