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Kosovo takes full control of Trepca zinc-lead mine despite Serbian opposition

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Kosovo takes full control of Trepca zinc-lead mine despite Serbian opposition

Kosovo's parliament voted to give the government control of a huge mining complex despite strong objections from Serbia, which claims it owns the business, Reuters reported Oct. 8.

The Trepca lead-zinc-silver complex is operating at minimum capacity, with creditor claims standing at €1.4 billion.

The government will now be the guarantor of the mine's debt. The complex was due to face bankruptcy proceedings on Nov. 1, the newswire wrote.

Under the proposed law, the government will own 80% of the complex and 20% will be owned by miners.

Serbia is claiming 75% ownership in the Trepca complex, while Kosovo maintains the former lost rights to state-controlled enterprises after Kosovo's separation from Serbia in 1999.

According to the report, Serbian lawmakers did not participate in the voting, while local media reported protests in the Serb-dominated part of Kosovo, where the mining complex is located.