Pristina, Kosovo, November 20, 2018—
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has signed an
agreement with Kosovo’s Ministry of Trade and Industry to help increase foreign direct investment by better aligning its investment policies with international best practices and improving services to investors. This is in line with commitments taken by Kosovo for the development of a regional economic area.
Western Balkans leaders agreed in 2017 to develop a Regional Economic Area (REA) to enable the free movement of goods, services, investments, and professional workers. IFC, with a financial contribution from the European Commission, will support Kosovo in implementing key reforms related to investment policies necessary for the REA.
The project will address all stages of the investment lifecycle, from improving procedures for investment entry and establishment and strengthening policies for investment retention, to enhancing investment promotion and attraction efforts.
“The number of investors ready to enter the Kosovo market is increasing," said Endrit Shala, Minister of Trade. “With this project, we want to improve the investment climate for businesses, align our investment policies with EU standards, and serve investors more efficiently.”
The agreement is part of IFC’s Western Balkans Regional Investment Policy and Promotion Project, which aims to enact targeted investment climate reforms to open a new regional market for investment in the Western Balkans.
“Connecting the region’s economies to global markets through trade, transport and investment will help boost foreign and intraregional investment, spur economic growth, and create jobs,” said Thomas Lubeck, IFC Regional Manager for Central and Southeast Europe. “Our work with the ministry is part of a wider World Bank Group program focused on investment climate and competitiveness reforms in the region.”
“The project will contribute to the implementation of the recommendations related to investment policies from the EC Country Report of 2018,” said Riccardo Serri, Deputy Head of the European Union Office / European Union Special Representative in Kosovo. “The project will also support Kosovo’s effort to implement the Multiannual Action Plan to establish the Regional Economic Area endorsed at the Western Balkans 6 Summit in Trieste in 2017.”
The European Commission has contributed €2.5 million to the broader Regional Investment Policy and Promotion Project, which will be implemented through June 2020. The project will be implemented in partnership with the Regional Cooperation Council.
IFC—a sister organization of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. We work with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in the toughest areas of the world. In fiscal year 2018, we delivered more than $23 billion in long-term financing for developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit
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