Senior US diplomat Gabriel Escobar said on Wednesday that the Open Balkan initiative has to be open to everyone and meet the appropriate standards.
The Deputy Assistant Secretary of State said that official Washington wants those two conditions in place in return for its support of the initiative. He told the Voice of America’s Albanian service that there can be no free trade zone unless the initiative includes all the countries of the Western Balkans and added that it has to have institutions that can manage goods and money efficiently.
Escobar said that he would come to the region with EU envoy Miroslav Lajcak to signal support for the Belgrade-Pristina dialogue and show commitment to the process. He said that the US will be very much engaged in the process in the entire region, not just in Serbia and Kosovo, and on both political and economic issues.