EU allocates 63 million euro ‘to bring Kosovo closer to Europe’

Posted Nov 9 2012 by The Sofia Globe staff

 
The European Commission (EC) said on November 9 2012 that it had allocated 63 million euro to support Kosovo’s efforts to implement its EU-reform agenda.

The funds will be used for reforms of the justice and public administration systems, to support the readmission and reintegration of refugees and to improve correctional and probation services.

The money will also help boost private sector development through the modernisation of Kosovo’s power supply, its infrastructure, and investment in education and regional development, the EC said.

The Commission said that the funding earmarked on November 9 is included in the 2012 annual programme for Kosovo under the EU’s Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA), and will be topped up with a further 20 million euro of co-financing by Kosovo authorities and other donors.

“Reforms to increase the efficiency of the judicial system, improve public administration and promote a more dynamic and resilient private sector are the key priorities of our assistance in Kosovo. This not only helps Kosovo move closer to the EU, but it also aims to bring about real change in Kosovo society for the benefit of all its citizens,” European Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighbourhood Policy Štefan Füle said.

The 2012 Annual IPA programme for Kosovo also includes provisions that will allow the Commission to respond quickly to political priorities that need financial support for their implementation, such as the Belgrade-Pristina dialogue, the strategic review of EU Rule of Law Mission in Kosovo EULEX, and the visa dialogue, the EC said.

“The Commission will continue to consult closely with the Kosovo authorities and other donors to ensure the efficiency and effectiveness of EU assistance in Kosovo,” the EC said. “As a recent report of the European Court of Auditors highlighted, close co-ordination between the Commission and EULEX is particularly important when it comes to supporting the rule of law in Kosovo, which is a complex and lengthy process,” the Commission said. The Commission said that its recent feasibility study for a Stabilisation and Association Agreement and the visa roadmap should encourage Kosovo to enact the necessary reforms.