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Kosovo welcomes IMF offers for membership

Kosovo Prime Minister Hashim Thaci hailed Saturday the International Monetary Fund's offer of membership to the breakaway Balkan republic.

"All Kosovo welcomes the partnership with the International Monetary Fund. Together we will achieve great results," he told journalist at an extraordinary press conference held in the government building after receiving news from Washington on the offer.

"As a member of the Fund, our state will enjoy a maximal access to global monetary cooperation. Huge opportunities but also serious responsibilities come with this decision."

The IMF said Friday it had offered membership to Kosovo, which would become the 186th member of the global financial body.

The US welcomed the IMF's offer.

"IMF membership will help Kosovo in its efforts to achieve economic stability and prosperity for the benefit of all its citizens," the US Embassy in Pristina said in a statement.

Kosovo, which declared independence from Serbia in February last year, officially applied for IMF and World Bank membership in July.

Thaci said that 138 IMF member states took part in the voting on Kosovo's application "and a huge number of them, 96 states, voted in favor of Kosovo."

Since declaring independence, Kosovo has been recognised by 58 countries, including the United States and most of the European Union.

But Serbia and its powerful ally Russia have objected to any moves that imply full statehood.

Copyright 2009 AFP Global Edition
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Author:AFP
Publication:AFP Global Edition
Date:May 9, 2009
Words:224
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