Natural resources, energy and environment
Kosovo is rich in natural resources. In the
country, among other things, there are the world's fifth
largest deposits of lignite, and coal accounts for
almost the entire electricity supply. Coal burning poses
a serious environmental problem.
An important mineral is also halloysite, a clay
mineral used in porcelain production. Lead, zinc,
chromium and bauxite are also extracted.
Major exports by Kosovo with a full list of the top products exported by the country. Includes trade value in U.S. dollars and the percentage for each product category.
Electricity supply is substandard and power outages
are common. Two coal power plants built between 1965 and
1975 account for almost the entire electricity
generation. They are said to be two of the three most
polluting coal power plants in Europe. Attempts to
replace them have been made for a long time but funding
is lacking. The large, debt-burdened electricity company
KEK has received some investments in new equipment and
privatized the distribution network, but much more would
be required to cover energy needs in the country in the
long term. It is common for people to connect illegally
on the electricity networks or simply fail to pay the
An agreement was concluded at the end of 2017 with
American companies to build a third coal-fired power
plant, close to the two existing ones.
As part of the EU-Serbia agreement with Serbia, an
agreement was signed in 2015 on energy distribution in /
to the country, but it is not agreed who owns the assets
The environmental problems are great, not least
around the power plants located near Prishtina. The air
pollution in the capital has at one time been so severe
that the authorities have been forced to temporarily ban
private cars and the sale of coal for burning in the
homes. The waste disposal is also inadequate and
problems exist with both illegal dumping and dumps that
leak and poison the groundwater.
Abbreviationfinder: A popular acronym site in the world covering abbreviation for each country. For example, KS stands for Kosovo.
In 2013, the World Bank estimated that the pollution
costs the country equivalent to just over 5 percent of
the gross domestic product. The environment is not yet a
priority policy area.
FACTS - ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT
Energy use per person
1 213 kilos of oil equivalents (2014)
Electricity consumption per person
2804 kWh, kWh (2014)
The share of energy from renewable sources
20.5 percent (2015)
Joint border guard with Serbia
The Serbian roadblocks are starting to be cleared away after an agreement on
joint border guarding has been negotiated between Kosovo and Serbia. The
government stops a proposal by Parliament to introduce a trade embargo on
Noises in Mitrovica
A rift between Albanians and Serbs in Mitrovica leads to gunfire. A Serb is
killed and a civilian and a policeman injured. In addition, a large number of
Kfor soldiers and Serbs are mildly injured when the peace force tries in vain to
remove a road barrier between Mitrovica and Jarinje at the border with Serbia.
Continued unrest at the border
Serbian residents of Mitrovica block off roads and bridges to prevent the
deployment of Kosovo police and customs officials. The government of Serbia
believes that the agreement only provides green light for imports of goods from
Kosovo, not for staffing border stations. Belgrade turns to the EU and the UN to
argue its cause. When NATO troops try to clear the roadblocks, they are met by
resistance from local Serbs, who set up 18 different barricades. The Serbs then
remove the blockades, partly to open for NATO soldiers, but still prevent Kosovo
officials from entering.
Trade agreement with Serbia
An agreement is reached that allows goods to be exported from Kosovo to
Serbia for the first time since independence was proclaimed in 2008. Serbia
agrees to allow imports of goods stamped with "Kosovo Customs", while Kosovo
agrees to refrain from using symbols such as weapons and flag, or the word
"republic," on the stamps.
Worried about the border with Serbia
During the summer, Kosovo decides to ban imports from Serbia in response to
the ongoing Serbian import embargo from Kosovo. When special police take over
two border crossings towards Serbia, tensions increase along the border where
many Serbs live. Enraged Serbs set fire to a border post, and a police officer
is killed in the riots. The NATO-led force Kfor resumes surveillance in the
area, and the two border crossings are closed until further notice.
Serbia agrees to accept Kosovan ID documents for border crossing and to give
Kosovo access to the population register which was brought to Belgrade in 1999.
It is also decided to recognize diplomas from the respective countries'
Negotiations trigger unrest
The ongoing negotiations between Kosovo and Serbia trigger violence in the
capital Prishtina. Hundreds of people attack a government office with stones in
protest of the city being visited by a Serbian government negotiator. Police use
tear gas to disperse the mass, and several people are injured.
EU-led negotiations Kosovo-Serbia
For the first time, Kosovo and Serbia are launching negotiations with the EU
in order to reach some kind of agreement.
New president - again
Kosovo's Supreme Court unlawfully declines the February election of Behgjet
Pacolli as president, due to a break in the polls. Pacolli defies the court and
declares that he intends to remain. The Constitutional Court temporarily
intervenes and transfers the office of President to Parliament President Jakup
Krasniqi. Just three days after Krasniqi's accession, the parliament convenes
for an extra session, electing the 36-year-old Deputy Police Chief Atifete
Jahjaga as its regular president. She has no previous political experience and
is again affiliated with any party. Her name had been shared by all the leading
parties in common. The parties also agree to change the constitution and the
electoral laws so that in the future the president will be elected by the
Controversial president is appointed
At the same time as Hashim Thaçi is approved as prime minister for a new
term, Parliament elected Behgjet Pacolli as new president. Pacolli, who is said
to be Kosovo's richest man, has been criticized for his dealings with Russia,
which is Serbia's ally. Pacolli's Swiss group has participated in the renovation
of the Kremlin and is accused of bribing the Russian regime. When Pacolli is
elected president, large parts of the opposition boycott the vote in parliament.