SECO’s interventions in Kosovo are complementary to those of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC). Kosovo declared independence in 2008. The state structures and market economy are still poorly developed. SECO supports the country in building the respective infrastructure and in job creation.
Switzerland recognised Kosovo as a sovereign state in 2008. Nonetheless, Kosovo’s state structures are weak. Installing a democratic culture and an efficient separation of powers with the required checks and balances has been a slow process. Per capita income has grown relatively consistently by 3% p.a. over the past 10 years.
Growing disparities and high unemployment
Nonetheless, Kosovo displays some worrying circumstances such as low investments, growing disparities and high unemployment. Moreover, corruption and discrimination of minorities need further attention. Also, acute levels of air and water pollution pose a threat to public health.
What are SECO’s objectives?
Switzerland supports Kosovo in democratic governance and decentralisation, economy and employment, water, health, migration, as well as peace and security. Switzerland maintains a migration partnership with Kosovo. SECO’s main focus is on:
A competitive private sector generates more jobs
SECO pushes for framework conditions that will favour SMEs. It is helping to make the country more attractive to outside investors. By saving on costs and generating more foreign capital, private companies are better placed to create more jobs.
Sustainable urban infrastructure
SECO supports Kosovo to establish a modern, eco-friendly infrastructure system. For example, it has helped set up an efficient water supply and sanitation system. SECO is also committed to improving efficiency in the supply and use of energy in Kosovo.
SECO, the SDC, for which Kosovo is a priority country, and the Human Security Division (HSD) jointly define and implement the Swiss Cooperation Strategy in Kosovo.
From 2017 to 2020, a total of some CHF 85 million is earmarked for Swiss transition cooperation with Kosovo, of which around CHF 21 million is from SECO.