Announcement (16 October 2019)
Announcement (16 October 2019)

Today, in Prishtina we continued the series of presentations of studies on the final phase of the Kosovo-Serbia dialogue. At today's press conference, Prof. Mrika Kotorri and Prof. Besnik Krasniqi, external experts at RIDEA Institute, presented the two next studies on the 'Pension and Disability Fund of Kosovo' and 'Kosovo-Serbia Bilateral Relations regarding the Energy Sector' in the context of the eventual final agreement between Kosovo and Serbia.

Some of the main recommendations of the study on the 'Pension and Disability Fund of Kosovo' are as follows:

Given the conclusions provided in the previous section, particularly the Judgment of the European Court on Human Rights, Serbia by unlawfully abolishing and misappropriating the SCIPDI Fund and by unlawfully suspending payments to Albanians and non-Serbs in Kosovo, has violated their fundamental right to pension and has prevented contributory pensioners from peacefully enjoying their pension. In order for justice to be done, it is recommended that:

i. The Republic of Serbia officially accepts that the right to pension is a fundamental right acquired through work and compulsory contributions and as such it is regulated as a fundamental human right which (i) cannot be transferred to another person and (ii) cannot be repealed, except for claims on unpaid amounts and unpaid claims;

ii. The Republic of Serbia officially accepts the responsibility for the pecuniary and non-pecuniary damages caused to the contributory pensioners;

iii. The Republic of Serbia provides a public apology to the contributory pensioners for the pecuniary and non-pecuniary damage caused by the unlawful suspension by the Republic of Serbia of the payment of pension and disability benefits

iv. The Republic of Serbia officially accepts its legal, political, as well as moral obligation to compensate the contributory pensioners for all the pecuniary and non-pecuniary damages as per ECHR’s decision in the legal case Grudic v. Serbia. Hereby, the Republic of Serbia, on a case by case basis, has to pay (i) in respect of non-pecuniary damage, EUR 7,000, plus any tax that may be chargeable, (ii) in respect of costs and expenses, EUR 1,500, plus any tax that may be chargeable, and (iii) in respect of their pecuniary damage, their due pensions, together with statutory interest for the period “calculated on the basis of the official consumer price index plus another 0.5% monthly”.

v. The Republic of Serbia, as per ECHR’s judgment[1] takes all “appropriate measures to ensure that its competent Serbian authorities implement the relevant laws in order to secure payment of the pensions and arrears in question, it being understood that certain reasonable and speedy factual and/or administrative verification procedures may be necessary for this regard.”

vi. That the Republic of Serbia, following Recommendation no. 5, agrees to a time plan on the execution in full of the payments.

vii. The governments of Kosovo and Serbia, do not obfuscate the issue of contributory pensioners with political or other issues, which are subject to negotiations, but rather explicitly acknowledge that the right to pension and disability insurance is a fundamental human right, as per the former SFRY, former KSAP and current Serbian and international legal documents, therefore it has to be solved for each contributory pensioner on a case by case basis.

viii. That the Kosovo and Serbia governments agree to identify all contributory pensioners who have paid compulsory contributions to the former SCIPDI of KSAP for at least 15 years but were unlawfully lay off, and treat this category of contributory pensioners based on former SFRY and former KSAP laws.

ix. That the Kosovo government makes use of all relevant and appropriate documents to build arguments when negotiating on behalf of its citizens in the Brussels Dialogue.

x. The Brussels Dialogue Facilitator, i.e. the EU, as well as the international community take all necessary measures to ensure that the Republic of Serbia, as per ECHR’s decision, agrees “to take all appropriate measures to ensure that the competent Serbian authorities implement the relevant laws in order to secure payment of the pensions and arrears in question, it being understood that certain reasonable and speedy factual and/or the administrative verification procedure may be necessary in this regard.”

xi. The Kosovo government, as per the request of the contributory pensioners, should seriously deal with further amending and supplementing Law No. 04/L-101 on Pension Funds of Kosovo, to ensure that the basic pension and the additional EUR 35 of pension received by the contributory pensioners be replaced by the term “social assistance to contributory pensioners”.

While below are some of the main recommendations of the study on 'Kosovo-Serbia Bilateral Relations regarding the Energy Sector':

i. Several different agreements (2013 Brussels Agreement, 2013 Energy Agreement, 2013 Arrangements regarding Energy, 2015 Conclusions report) with the same aims and, to a large extent, the same content had to be reached on energy alone, but there is still no tangible progress in their implementation. Given this, Kosovo should not allow the negotiations on Energy to be transformed into a Never-Ending Saga by Serbia. Therefore, Kosovo should not approve of any negotiations without a clearly specified deadline of completion and it should insist on having detailed Energy Arrangements with a clear and specific text. It cannot be emphasised strongly enough that Kosovo should under no circumstances accept any agreement text, which is characterised by any constructive ambiguities. Further, the agreement should be accompanied by a clearly specified action plan, with a clearly specified timeframe/deadlines on implementation.

ii. The EnCS, the Brussels Dialogue Facilitator, i.e. the EU, as well as the international community, should take all necessary measures to ensure that Serbia, no later than within six months from the resuming of the Brussels Dialogue complies with the MC-EnC Decision 2016/02/MC-EnC (elaborated in detail above), namely that Serbia “takes all appropriate measures to rectify the breach identified in Article 1 and ensure compliance with Energy Community law (by December 2016). The Republic of Serbia shall report regularly to the Secretariat and the Permanent High Level Group about the measures taken” (Energy Community as per the.

iii. KOSTT and EMS should start negotiations facilitated by EnCS on the Interim Agreements on ITC and Congestion Management, taking due account of the EMS-KOSTT Framework Agreement. KOSTT should submit to the EnCS and EMS its request for compensation from the revenues EMS received from allocating transmission capacity on the three interconnectors of Contracting Parties adjacent to the network operated by KOSTT for the period 2006-2019, during which Kosovo was a Contracting Party to the EnCT. The total amount that EMS owes to KOSTT has to be re-estimated to cover the period under negotiation. Following this, an agreement on KOSTT’s request should be reached within a short period of time from the submission of the request proposal by KOSTT. The agreement should contain an action plan regarding details and a deadline for payment.

iv. KOSTT and EMS should start negotiations facilitated by the EU on KOSTT’s request for compensation from the revenues EMS received from allocating transmission capacity on the three interconnectors of Contracting Parties adjacent to the network operated by KOSTT for the period 2004-2006, as per 2000 Temporary Energy Exchange Agreement. The total amount that EMS owes to KOSTT has to be re-estimated to cover only that period under negotiation. Following this, an agreement on KOSTT’s request should be reached within short period of time from the submission of the request proposal by KOSTT. The agreement should contain an action plan regarding details of and a deadline for payment.

v. In case Serbia fails to reach the agreements foreseen under Recommendations 3 and 4, and/or does not take measures to implement the agreements, when reached, the Government of Kosovo should submit these claims to international arbitration.

vi. Prior to an agreement reached international arbitration, Kosovo should suspend all activities envisaged in Point 15 on Distribution Services of Arrangements regarding energy. That is, Kosovo should condition the implementation of Point 15 of the Arrangements regarding energy with the solution of the disputes elaborated in Recommendations 3 and 4.

vii. The EnCS, the Brussels Dialogue Facilitator, i.e. the EU, as well as the international community should take all necessary measures to ensure that Serbia, no later than within one month from the resuming of the Brussels Dialogue, starts the implementation of the Framework Agreement with Kosovo.

viii. The EnCS, the Brussels Dialogue Facilitator, i.e. the EU, as well as the international community should take all necessary measures to ensure that Serbia, no later than within one month from the resuming of the Brussels Dialogue, starts the implementation of the Inter-TSO Agreement with Kosovo.

ix. In case Serbia fails to fully comply with and fully implement the Framework Agreement and/or the Inter-TSO Agreement with Kosovo, Kosovo should file a complaint with the EnCS.

x. Until a solution to the dispute is found regarding Recommendations 7 and 8, Kosovo should suspend all activities envisaged in Point 15 on Distribution Services of the Arrangements regarding energy. That is, Kosovo should condition the implementation of Point 15 of the Arrangements regarding energy with the solution of the disputes elaborated in Recommendations 7 and 8.

xi. Kosovo and Albania should take to international arbitration their claims regarding the lost income amounting to ca. 3 million Euros resulting from Serbia conditioning the operationalisation of the 400 kV interconnection line between Kosovo and Albania with licensing of ElektroSever.

xii. Until a solution to the dispute is found regarding Recommendation 11, Kosovo should suspend all activities envisaged in Point 15 on Distribution Services of the Arrangements regarding energy. That is, Kosovo should condition the implementation of Point 15 of the Arrangements regarding energy with the solution of the disputes elaborated in Recommendation 11.

xiii. Owing to the continuous infringements by EMS, Kosovo/ KEDS should take to international arbitration KEDS’ claims about the losses it has incurred from non-payment of electricity bills by customers in the north of Kosovo which to date amounts to ca. 204 million Euros.

xiv. Until a solution to the dispute is found regarding Recommendation 13, Kosovo should suspend all activities envisaged in Point 15 on Distribution Services of the Arrangements regarding energy. That is, Kosovo should condition the implementation of Point 15 of the Arrangements regarding energy with the solution of the disputes elaborated in Recommendation 13.

RIDEA Publications
RIDEA Publications RIDEA publishes academic articles in internationally peer-reviewed journals, commentaries and op-eds in the newspapers.
Reports / Policy Briefs
Reports / Policy Briefs THE SUBSTANCE AND STATUS OF IMPLEMENTATION OF KOSOVO-SERBIA DIALOGUE’ AGREEMENTS
Academic Articles
Academic Articles Essentially Contested? Kosovo’s Perplexing and Mixed International Statebuilding Record. Gëzim Krasniqi.
Journal of European and International Affairs (JEIA)
Journal of European and International Affairs (JEIA) The overall state of the sphere of academic or scholarly publications in Kosovo, Albania, Montenegro and other countries.
Commentary/OP-ED
Commentary/OP-ED Brussels Prelude to Kosovo (The Parliament) 31st October 2013. Labinot Greiçevci.
E-newsletter
E-newsletter Biannual summary of RIDEAs activities.