Krasniqi: The Diaspora should invest in business, exports increased but we are far from the region countries

Krasniqi: The Diaspora should invest in business, exports increased but we are far from the region countries

The Chairman of the Board of the Chamber of Doing Business in Kosovo (CDBK), Skënder Krasniqi in an interview for KosovaPress talks about last year’s economy.

Focusing on the economic growth of 9.9%, Krasniqi says that it has happened in many countries, as a result of price increases on almost all products.

“All countries have had economic growth due to the decline during 2020, and the difference is very large, because during 2020, all countries have had a decline, we also had a decline in that year. Whereas, the economic growth during 2021, has also occurred due to the increase of prices in the global market. Unfortunately, Kosovo has a very large export-import ratio, 90 to 10, which no European country has. And any increase in prices affects higher revenues in Customs because unfortunately most of the revenues that Kosovo has are from Customs”, he said.

Krasniqi states that increasing remittances does not help economic development. According to him, the diaspora should be oriented towards investments in businesses, which would then create new jobs.

“Increasing remittances does not help the development of the country, it is more an increase in the support of citizens in serious condition by their families who live abroad, which in fact should not happen. We should have increased investment of our compatriots in businesses, in job creation, to do business that is practically not happening. We do not have a concrete offer yet, and the Law on Strategic Investments that expired in 2020 was not addressed at all in 2021. And so, we do not have a Law on Strategic Investments, in order to have an increase in investment, not an increase in remittances. The increase in remittances also affects the large exodus as a result of the dissatisfaction and inability of citizens to survive”, he said.

The Chairman of the CDBK Board says that over 70% of citizens of working age in Kosovo are unemployed.

“We have an extremely high unemployment rate, over 70 percent of citizens of working age are unemployed. Therefore, we must take care to have an increase in employment, and an increase in welfare, and this only happens when we have economic growth, when businesses are doing well, when we have supply, and when investors can be more present in Kosovo as they are in other countries of the region”, said Krasniqi.

Krasniqi said that last year Kosovo marked an increase in exports but reminded that we remain far from the countries of the region, taking as an example North Macedonia.

“In recent years we have increased exports, although it is a very small trend compared to the possibilities and large imports, but also compared to the countries of the region, such as North Macedonia which has up to 6 billion (euro) exports. Whereas, our export for ten years has been up to 400 million, while now we have an increase to 500-600 million euros, which is a good increase, but it is still very far from the region and very far from the possibilities we have”, he said.

Krasniqi has asked from the Government to focus on the creation of economic zones, change of administrative instructions, the Law on Mines, and a special offer for the creation of strategic products in agriculture.

“With the passage of laws, with the creation of a concrete offer to do business, with the creation of economic zones, with special offers to do business, and with the creation of strategic products in agriculture. Creating offers to invest in mines. So, with the change of administrative instructions, the Law on Mines, the Law on Labor, and the Law on Internal Trade, there will be much more space, both for our businesses, and for citizens to have more jobs and for the arrival of investors. Greater coordination with the Ministry of Education is required, which has been very passive. Unfortunately, the work is much smaller than the opportunities we have to have an economic growth”, he said.

Krasniqi asked the Prime Minister, Ministers and the Assembly of Kosovo, that during the next year, to be much more active in coordinating policies together with the business community.

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