The Constitutional Court refused a challenge to the Trepca law, paving the way for the mining complex to be restructured.
Srpska Lista, a coalition of Serbian parties in the governing coalition have been boycotting the Kosovo Assembly sessions since the government put a bill on the restructuring of the Trepca mining giant to a vote on the law on October 7. The law separates Trepca’s assets from its debts, putting the former from the management of the Kosovo Privatization Agency, KPA, to that of the Kosovo government.
On October 13, the Serb parliamentary group submitted an appeal to the Kosovo Constitutional Court, claiming the law was unconstitutional.
“Many procedures in accordance with the Kosovo Constitution were violated by the ratification of the Law on Trepca. The vital interest of the Serbian people is not being respected with the ratification of this law,” said Slavko Simic, the head of Srpska Lista, after submitting the law for review.
The Constitutional Court, however, found the law constitutional both in content and in terms of the procedure of its ratification.
The Court also refused Srpska Lista’s request to apply a “temporary measure” on the law, freezing it from enforcement.
The law needs to go into effect before November 2, otherwise Trepca will be liquidated. In its heyday in the 1980s, Trepca employed more than 20,000 people and was one of Yugoslavia’s main exporters. Located on both sides of Mitrovica, a city that has been ethnically divided by the Iber river since the 1999 war, the mining giant’s future remains a heavily contested issue. The Serbian government is against the new law and has sought to raise the issue of the mining complex in the EU-mediated dialogue.
On Prishtina Insight, critics have also wondered whether the law is a good solution for Trepca, with government advisors and experts maintaining that the law is both necessary and beneficial.