Serbia plans to invest 13 million euro ($15 million) in the construction of a car battery factory at the Trepca industrial complex in northern Kosovo, the director of the complex, Jovan Dimkic, has said.
The factory will produce 700,000 car batteries annually and will have about 203 employees, Dimkic said in a video file posted on the website of Serbian news agency Tanjug on Saturday.
Trepca is located in northern Kosovo, a region composed of four municipalities with ethnic Serb majority: Mitrovica, Leposavic, Zvecan and Zubin Potok. Serbia does not recognise Kosovo’s independence and claims ownership of Trepca as an asset of the former Yugoslavia. Kosovo, a former autonomous province within the former Yugoslavia, declared independence from Serbia in 2008.
The Brussels Agreement reached in April 2013 between the governments of Serbia and Kosovo on the normalisation of their relations includes a clause envisaging the integration of the Serb-majority municipalities in northern Kosovo into the Kosovo legal system, which has not been fulfilled by the government in Pristina thus far.
A feasibility study for the project for the construction of a car battery factory has already been approved by some institutions in Serbia, Dimkic said on the sidelines of a business forum carried on September 8-9 in Leposavic, in northern Kosovo.
The expected period for the return of the investment would be about three years long, he added.
In its heyday in the 1970s, the Trepca industrial complex employed more than 20,000.