Kosovo is expected to decline any invitation to the next Open Balkans meeting scheduled for June 7th in Ohrid, northern Macedonia.

Although Montenegro is expected to change its position on this regional initiative with Prime Minister Dritan Abazovic announcing that it will be part of the Ohrid meeting, there is no change of position in Kosovo.

In the ruling party, Vetëvendosje Movement remain steadfast in their stance against the Open Balkans.

Regarding this position are also in the Democratic Party of Kosovo and civil society.

Vetëvendosje Movement MP, Arbër Rexhaj, says for KosovaPress that the Open Balkans does not help Kosovo in economic or security terms, but strengthens Serbia.

According to him, the regional cooperation of the Western Balkan countries should be done in the framework of the Berlin Process.

"We are against (the Open Balkans) and in support of the Berlin Process.

We think that the Open Balkans does not help in the economic aspect of security and other processes of the Republic of Kosovo, on the contrary it strengthens Serbia… Kosovo intends in the future to join the European Union and to be in processes of close cooperation with the European alliance.

"In this sense, we see the need to create any process that would be close and that would serve Serbia," he said.

Although she says that the Open Balkans are not very different from the Berlin Process, the deputy chairwoman of the Democratic Party of Kosovo, Vlora Çitaku, emphasizes that the problems between Kosovo and Serbia are not of a commercial and economic nature, but political.

"In essence, there is no big difference between the Berlin Process and the Open Balkans.

The fundamental difference I would say is that in the Berlin Process we have European guarantees, direct involvement and Brussels dictates the pace of the agreements.

However, we must be clear that the problem between Kosovo and Serbia is not of trade and economic reason, but is of a political nature… We have many regional initiatives, many of them are duplication of each other ", emphasizes Çitaku.

On the other hand, Arbëresha Loxha from the Group for Legal and Political Studies, says for KosovaPress that Kosovo should not join the Open Balkans.

"Any initiative, including the Open Balkans, which is set as a tendency to replace Kosovo's integration progress in the European Union and to bypass the Berlin Process does not go in Kosovo's favor and would be harmful if we become part of it.

We consider that we already have mechanisms to advance regional cooperation.

It is that all the countries of the Western Balkans are already signatories to the SAA and must adhere to the standards and specifics guaranteed by this agreement.

On the other hand, we have the CEFTA agreement, but it is not being respected by some countries towards Kosovo…

"All the countries of the Western Balkans, if they adhere to the CEFTA agreement and advance the SAA, there is no need to have agreements or replacements with other ideas such as the Open Balkans," she said.

The next meeting of the regional leaders of the Open Balkans in Ohrid, Northern Macedonia, will be held early next month.

So far, the three countries part of this initiative have signed several agreements and memoranda of understanding between them.

The agreements and memoranda signed so far are related to the abolition of border controls between these countries, for cooperation in facilitating the import, export and movement of goods, for free access to the labor market and for protection against natural disasters in the Western Balkans. .