The economy of Kosovo has shown considerable progress over the past years with regards to transition among a system that is market based and the preservation of macroeconomic stability. However, the country is still significantly dependent on the Diaspora and international community for assistance in the financial and technical sectors. Approximately 15% of Kosovo’s GDP is made up of remittances from the Diaspora which are chiefly located in Switzerland and Germany. Another 15% of the GDP is made up of donor financed aid and activities. The average per capita income is estimated to be only around $2,500 which makes the citizens of Kosovo the poorest in Europe.
A noteworthy issue that pushes black market activities and outward migration to take place is that the unemployment rate in Kosovo affects about 40% of the total population. The major part of Kosovo’s population typically lives in towns and villages that are rural and outside the capital of Prishtina. Near subsistence farming, that is very often inefficient, is awfully common in Kosovo resulting of limited mechanization, lack of technical expertise and small plots. Kosovo has been competent in privatizing 50% of its state owned enterprises (SOE’s) by number and more than 90% by the value as a result of international assistance.
Metals and minerals such as lead, nickel, lignite, zinc, magnesium, chrome, aluminum and others, were at one time the backbone of Kosovo’s industry but their output has significantly declined as a result of insufficient investment and aging equipment.
A major obstacle to the economic development has been the unreliable and limited supply of electricity caused by the financial and technical issues that have been affecting the country. Expression of interest has been requested by the Ministry of Energy and Mining of Kosovo to create a new power plant for the purpose of dealing with Kosovo’s increasing demands that are currently unmet.
Kosovo’s official currency is the Euro; however, the Serbian dinar is used among the Serb communes as well. The core inflation has lowered as a result of the Euro’s assistance. One of the chief open economies around the region is considered to be Kosovo as it has been persisting to work with the international community among procedures to advance the business environment and attract foreign investment.