Istrefi required from Government and opposition to assist Kosovo Telecom

Posted in 07 May 2019

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Bedri Istrefi, Chief Executive Officer of Kosovo Telecom, has called Government and opposition, to take steps to help Kosovo Telecom.

"Last week we received a bailiff execution report worth a total of € 25.9 million, which is currently unaffordable for Telecom, and we must jointly find a solution with the Government to close this issue. It is a financial obligation that must be found a solution, "Istrefi said in" Express Interview "on KTV.

He says they are directed to Kosovo's institutions so that this execution of the bailiff is not allowed.

"The government has been notified of the Arbitration decision and we have come to the conclusion of this situation. If this is executed by the bailiff then the consequences will be great. There was a willingness from the prime minister to make the solution. We have also asked for an understanding by Z-Mobile not to execute it at this time, "said Itrefi.

According to him, stability can be returned to Telecom through three projects he explains.

"The moment I took the post of chief executive, we have set the target for which we can fix Telecom problems and create stability. For three years we are without maintenance of operational technical systems and as such has come to a great degradation of services. Given the importance of this, we have requested financial support from the Government to reach this contract, which is likely to bring stability. At the same time, we have demanded the implementation of the 'state code' and the other project is the law on legal interception, Istrefi said, adding that these are three separate projects that could restore Telekom's stability.

He says the technology has developed a lot, "and we need to make some changes to the equipment within the company." Istrefi also talked about Telekom's employment.

"We have found a great part of the staff there. We have targeted that it is imperative to have employees in pilot projects. At the same time, we have decided that there is no employment, and that there are also wage cuts. As far as we could, we have made decisions to stop the additional costs, "Istrefi said.

He says he has proposed a project with an early retirement scheme that would hurt the number of employees. "Given the average age, we have also brought a project for the early retirement scheme. About 600 workers can retire within two years through this pension scheme, and there are also readiness, "he said.

Istrefi added that before the Investigation Commission we wanted to have more time to offer data for the last 20 years. We are ready to provide all the information to find the culprit for this state of Telecom.

"A contract can not be terminated as the consequences may be worse. The biggest fate is that all these contracts have been sent to justice bodies. There is now an investigative process. I have demanded that policies, institutions mobilize and turn their attention to Telecom. Let's cooperate to create professional, non-political debates, to save the company, "Istrefi said.

He has also warned of protests. "I will play the role of a trade unionist, I am not a policy mortgage. I have called for institutions to turn their attention and to make a solid solution, otherwise we will be on the way. I think it's the right time. Today, the property and the property of the Government of Kosovo are at risk. As a consequence of the dividend payment, we have banned capital investments, and as a consequence this condition has been created. I believe that the Investigation Commission will do its job, and will not use it for their party interests, but for the benefit of the citizens, "said Istrefi.