The U.S. president's special envoy for the negotiations between Serbia and Kosovo, Richard Grenell, has said that the U.S. does not support the partial lifting of the 100 percent tariff on Serbian imports announced by Kosovo Premier Albin Kurti, adding that Washington's stance is that the tariffs must be abolished completely.
"We do not support Prime Minister Kurti’s half measure. Our position is quite clear: the tariffs must be completely dropped. Mr Kurti is making a serious mistake - and that was made clear to President (of Kosovo Hashim) Thaci at the White House today," Grenell tweeted on Feb. 27.
Late on Feb. 26, Kurti announced that as of March 15 the gradual annulment of tariffs on goods imported from Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina would begin, with tariffs on raw materials to be lifted first, but added that at the same time Serbia should pledge to stop its campaign for the withdrawal of recognition of Kosovo's independence and that the elimination of trade barriers should start.
In the event that Serbia does not adhere to the obligation of lifting the barriers and does not stop lobbying for derecognition, as of April 1 Kosovo will start applying reciprocal measures, first in the area of trade relations, said Kurti.
He added that if Belgrade did not respond to those demands, Kosovo would reimpose the 100 percent tariffs as of June 15.