BIRN Fact-Check: What Will the Serbia-Kosovo Energy Deal Achieve?

Secondly, the Kosovo authorities will have access to the Valac/Vallaq substation, an important part of the country's power grid that is located in a Serb-majority municipality, and other energy infrastructure that Pristina was not able to access previously.

Serbs to pay bills to Serbian company

Pedestrians walk in the Serb dominated northern part of the ethnically divided town of Mitrovica, Kosovo, April 2020. Photo: EPA-EFE/VALDRIN XHEMAJ

One of the most important points in the agreement is that Kosovo's Energy Regulatory Office, an independent body which regulates activities in energy sector, is obliged to give a license to Drustvo Elektrosever.

Drustvo Elektrosever will provide distribution services, such as billing, payment collection, maintenance and the physical connection of new customers in the four northern Serb-majority municipalities. Residents of these municipalities have not paid anything for electricity since the end of the war in Kosovo in 1999, when Serbia lost control over its former province.

The role of was Drustvo Elektrosever was actually agreed in 2013 and the company was established under Kosovo law, but it has not been a licence to operate yet.

The 'road map' did not establish any deadline for the issuing of the licence but the Energy Regulatory Office confirmed that on Friday it will review Drustvo Elektrosever's application to supply energy in northern Kosovo.

Violeta Haxholli from Kosovo Democratic Institute, a Pristina-based think-tank monitoring Kosovo-Serbia dialogue, told BIRN hat the agreement on energy that was signed in Brussels on Tuesday "is in fact an old agreement".

Haxholli also argued that it is "in contradiction with the free market which has...

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