The Stabilization and Association Agreement with Kosovo has been in force for six years now and is the foundation for Kosovo’s European integration process, says the spokesperson of the European Commission, Ana Pisonero, for KosovaPress.
Last Wednesday marked six years since Kosovo signed a Stabilization and Association Agreement (SAA) with the European Union.
This agreement was considered of historical importance for the political, legal and economic integration of Kosovo in the European Union.
The European Commission spokeswoman Ana Pisonero describes the SAA as much more than a legal and contractual framework between Kosovo and the EU.
“The agreement is much more than a legal and contractual framework. It anchors our political dialogue that covers all sectors of the economy and society. It offers wide and diverse opportunities from economic and trade development, to fighting corruption and strengthening the rule of law, as well as tackling climate change”, she said.
But she added that: “It is up to Kosovo to take advantage of the opportunities offered by this agreement, for example by establishing – both in law and in spirit – economic policies, the guarantees of the rule of law and the necessary standards for attracting investments and increasing the quality of local products to be more competitive”.
According to her, the more Kosovo implements the SAA, the closer its standards will be to those of EU member states, which offer more opportunities for trade and investment.
Within the framework of the SAA, there are some criteria that Kosovo must meet in order for its citizens to move without visas in the Schengen area. Although the SAA is considered an important move towards the EU, Kosovo is the only country in the region that does not have visa liberalization.
Asked about the reasons for the lack of a decision by the EU on this issue, Pisonero says that the European Parliament has supported the Commission proposal, but it is still under consideration in the Council, by EU member states.
“The European Commission is very aware of the importance of this issue for the citizens of Kosovo. The Commission stands by its assessment of July 2018, that Kosovo has met the standards for visa liberalization. The European Parliament has supported the Commission proposal, but it is still under consideration in the Council, by the EU member states”, she said.