Prishtina, 17.05.2016 Stabilization and Association Agreement has its advantages, but also bears some risks. However, if we managed to achieve positive developments in three directions; increase production, increase exports and workforce mobility, then we will have many benefits, said Minister of Economic Development, Blerand Stavileci.
Stavileci made these comments today in the High Level Conference on SAA between the EU and Kosovo, on the topic Encouraging the economy, development and creation of jobs, attended by senior state leaders of the Republic of Kosovo, local political representatives, EU Commissioner for European Neighborhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, Johannes Hahn, and representatives of other international and local institutions.
Minister Stavileci, speaking on the areas in the scope of MED, said there can be no economic development without a stable supply of electricity, and the solution to this was provided by the energy vision, which is a combination of five projects.
One project is with foreign direct investment, namely Kosova e Re Power Plant, with 500 MW, then Kosovo B with 600 MW, for which a feasibility study was launched by the European Commission, Kosovo A, for which as of next month a study will be launched to review possible options to extend its lifespan, to fill the gap from 2016 until 2022 or 2023, when the Kosova e Re power plant is expected to be commissioned. We also plan to have 414 MW of renewable energy sources and implement energy efficiency measures, he added.
According to him, the list of 13 projects presented includes a mining project which is vital for the functioning of existing capacities, but also for new energy capacities; gas project feasibility study, which we applied together with Albania, under the Western Balkans Investment Framework. In this context, there is also the project for heating, water, Energy Efficiency and seven other environmental projects.
Minister also raised the need for to move away from conventional schemes. He said that without underestimating other sectors, the greatest potential for development lies in the field of agriculture and Information Technology. In these areas we can increase production, increase production capacities and activate the workforce.
Stavileci emphasized that in the next 5 years, with only 5.7 million investments from the state budget, IT and EE could create 22,771 jobs. Hence, this is where the focus should lie for international financial institutions. In this line, he said that WB has a project that aims to increase the competitiveness of the private sector and create new jobs.
This is a reflection for the future, not only for SAA, but also for the Berlin process, to include both the connectivity of energy transport, but also the creation of a soft platform of economic policies, such as the one in the field of IT and Innovation, to ensure that it is something to be proud of, rather than have as social burden. Hence, in this regard, Kosovo can be an epicenter of these developments, added Minister Stavileci.