AmCham’s Position on the Recent Adoption of the Regulation on Cash Operations by the Central Bank of Kosovo

Prishtina, February 15, 2024 – The recent adoption of the Regulation on Cash Operations, by the Central Bank of Kosovo, has elicited strong reactions from both local and international stakeholders. While we acknowledge the need for regulatory oversight to ensure financial stability, it is imperative to consider the short-term implications of the regulation on the financial well-being of the citizens of Kosovo.

The regulation in question, without prejudice to its actual objective, inappropriately, asserts that only the Euro can be used for payment purposes within Kosovo, effectively excluding the use of any other currency in transactions between parties. However, it is essential to note that while the Euro holds legal tender status in Kosovo, this does not preclude the use of other currencies in transactions when mutually agreed upon by parties involved. Thus, the regulation’s assertion regarding exclusive Euro usage may be misconstrued and warrants revision for clarity.

Furthermore, the regulation’s impact extends to cross-border transactions between Kosovo and Serbia. In facilitating transactions involving Serbian Dinar (RSD), we propose several alternatives to ensure accessibility while maintaining regulatory compliance:

Alternative 1: Utilization of money transfer institutions for fund transfers between Kosovo and Serbia. While feasible, this option may prove to be the least practical and cost-intensive for individuals.

Alternative 2: Establishment of a bank account by the Serbian Government in Serbia for cross-border transactions with corresponding RSD denominated accounts in Kosovo banks. This method offers a practical solution through existing bank relationships, albeit with potential logistical complexities.

Alternative 3: Direct transfer of funds from a Serbian bank to a designated Kosovo bank for distribution to individual beneficiary accounts. This option streamlines the process while ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements.

In all alternatives, it is crucial to address the licensing of institutions for currency importation to ensure an adequate supply of RSD in Kosovo.

As advocates for a conducive business environment and economic development in Kosovo, the American Chamber of Commerce in Kosovo emphasizes the importance of balanced regulatory measures that foster financial inclusion and facilitate cross-border economic activities. We urge stakeholders to reconsider the implications of the recent regulation and explore collaborative solutions that uphold both regulatory objectives and economic pragmatism.