Pristina, 27 October 2015/Independent Balkan News Agency
By Elton Tota
Republic of Kosovo signed today the Stabilization and Association Agreement with the European Union, a historical moment which is expected to have an impact in the economic growth of Kosovo.
The agreement was signed in Strasbourg in France, in the office of the EU head of diplomacy, Federica Mogherini and gives way to the EU accession of Kosovo.
Mogherini described this as a “very important step which implies a greater commitment from both sides”.
“The agreement will be applied now”, said the EU Enlargement Commissioner, Johannes Hahn, who will visit Kosovo next week.
Kosovo’s PM, Isa Mustafa hopes that the visa liberalization process is the next step.
Kosovo is the only country in the region, the citizens of which are subject to the visa regime when they travel in the EU countries.
“Today we have signed an agreement with the European Union, which is an important process for us”, Mustafa said.
President of Kosovo, Atifete Jahjaga declared that as of today, Kosovo establishes contractual relations with the European Union.
“This agreement will help in the implementation of reforms in many sectors and will boost political dialogue between Kosovo and the European Union. Kosovo’s benefits are numerous, especially in encouraging foreign investments and offering the necessary conditions for a sustainable economic development of the country”, she said.
SAA was praised by EU representatives and the United States of America.
Rapporteur on Kosovo in the European Parliament, Ulrike Lunacek said that this is an important step for Kosovo toward the European Union.
“The signing of the Stabilization and Association Agreement between Kosovo and Europe is very good news and at the same time, an important step for Kosovo’s path toward the European integration”, Lunacek said.
Lunacek has urged the parliament of Kosovo to ratify this process as soon as possible now, due to its importance.
“I now urge MEPs and Parliament of Kosovo to ratify this agreement as soon as possible, as SAA offers a powerful stimulus for the an implementation and institutionalization of reforms and in order strengthen Kosovo’s relations with its neighbors and contribute in the stability of the region”, she said.
US embassy to Pristina also congratulated the government of Kosovo for the signing of the agreement.
“Once SAA is ratified in parliament, this agreement will directly benefit the people of Kosovo. It represents a real progress in the integration in European and Trans Atlantic institutions”, the US embassy declared. /ibna/