Prishtina, 23 January 2012 The Government of Kosovo has a vision for Kosovos economic development, therefore our aim for 2012 is to move forward towards the implementation of this plan and economic vision, in which the private sector, opening of new employment possibilities, economic sustainability, elimination of barriers in all fields and legal regulation represent constant tendencies that will ensure the most suitable possible business environment, said Minister of Economic Development, Besim Beqaj.
Beqaj made these comments during a press conference, in which he presented MED priorities for 2012 in sectors covered by this ministry, including: energy, mines, telecommunications and monitoring of publicly owned enterprises.
As regards the energy sector, Beqaj said that a structural reform has commenced, and that it will provide for the best possible economic effect of all available resources, therefore, this structural reform will be utilized to attract new investments, starting with the financial closure of TPP Kosova e Re Project, which is considered one of the most significant projects for the provision of basic infrastructure that stimulates economic development.
In the distribution sphere, we have managed to adopt all necessary documents and we hope to be able to announce the winning bidder soon, and to conclude the transaction process during this year, he said.
Further, Beqaj said that the most important factors for the energy sphere are the continuation of institutional arrangements for the construction of 400kV line between Kosovo and Albania and investments in renewable energy, including the re-actualization of HPP Zhuri.
At the same time, during this year, we will establish the Energy Efficiency Agency, which will provide us with an opportunity to address not only energy generation but also electricity savings, the Minister said.
As regards the mining sector, MED head said that the Mining Strategy is being thoroughly reviewed, and that the upcoming version, to cover the period until 2025, will define the path and orientation for the utilization of Republic of Kosovos mines, assets and mining resources, and will represent a long-term guideline for the utilization and economic valuation of the countrys mineral resources. Its adoption is expected during the first quarter of the current year.
We are in process of establishing the Kosovo Geological Institute, in conformity with the Law on Mines and Minerals, which will be responsible for conducting scientific research and identifying mineral potentials. Meanwhile, we will have established, within the first quarter, the State Museum of Mines Crystals and Minerals, located at the Trepca compound, Beqaj said.
He added that the Strategy and legislative foundation adopted last year provide for the opening of this sector for foreign investments, namely that this year the sector will open for new foreign investments, both through public-private partnerships and other forms.
Minister Beqaj emphasized as regards the telecommunication sphere, that the reform in PTK will continue, while the privatization process has commenced and the transaction advisors appointment is being finalized.
In this context, I would like to pass to you some good news - PTK management is in communication with Monaco Telecom and they managed to decrease the charge for using the +377 country code, which we have used for a long time, by six million euro in comparison to last year, he said.
According to him, PTK privatization is in MEDs agenda for this year, and all preparatory work to this end will be conducted this year, including market sounding, while all decisions regarding transformation and privatization processes will be taken in conformity with the local business environment conditions as well as the readiness of investors and conditions of the international markets.
However, there will be no hasty action which could create insufficiently sustainable effects.
The Minister informed that other activities in the field of telecommunications are state internet and fixed telephony codes, in cooperation with TRA, ITU and other international mechanisms.
Publicly Owned Enterprises
In relation to the Publicly Owned Enterprise Monitoring Unit and the policies to be adopted in this regard, Beqaj said that last year Publicly Owned Enterprises were monitored and some of them did not have a satisfactory performance, however, MED will continue to cooperate with their respective management structures in order to improve their performance in service provision for Kosovo citizens.