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Kosovo; in between digital transformation and migration!

Opinion by the editor: Arsim.Ajeti
author can be reached at: arsim@thejournalbiz.com


Paradoxically it may seem, but sometimes reality is stranger than fiction!

Namely the title serves me as an introduction to the current stagnation, on the one hand, and extraordinary achievements on the other, where according to latest statistics, Kosovo registered over 100 milion eu from IT & Comms (Information Technology and Communication) services, recording a 30% increase on year over year basis

While the other ‘statistical concern’ is that of growing phenomenon of migration, where in the last three months alone, we have over 100,000 thousand applications for working visas, as per statistics from the independent european media Euractiv

Just recently,

Kosovo marked an increase in service and sales that we all can be proud of, talnentmng reported a staggering increase in IT service sales estimated at over 100 million eu for the fiscal year 2021, additionally there was an increase in employment too

However, we have a growing trend of legal migration or (migration for contractual work) in January alone, as reported there were over 50,000 applications at the German Embassy

Well the first question comes to mind is;

  • why such a large number of people want to leave Kosovo? (while IT sector is growing exponentially) and there is plenty of room for many newcomers from the tech field, provided they have above essential IT skills they will be eligible to receive, a well above average salary too.


  • how much of the attention the Gov’s paid to the education of the younger generations in this field?

What was the Gov’s role in all this? I believe those question requires no further attention, as we already assume the answer!

Therefore, we may like it or not, but the main ‘culprit’, can be found somewhere among us, and we shouldn’t look farther than ‘ Politics’… that for decades plunged Kosovo’s economy and European integration stalled,  indirectly contributing to an economic stagnation, prompting many to seek opportunity abroad or, in the foreign market, hence the migration!

Furthermore Kosovo officially, has the highest unemployment rate in the Western Balkans (over 25%) according to statistics from the Kosovo institute of Statistics, (25.9% * survey conducted during 20/21)

Indicative to note is that the highest unemployment rate is in the age group of 15-24 years (49.1%).

But on the contrary,

employment on the IT sector increased exponentially from 14,000 in 2017, to a total of 20,000 in 2021

*Thejournalbiz chart on the growing trend of IT Sector

The IT& comms sector has an average age of employees around 24.2, out of which 61% are male and 39% are female, (* according to our statistics covering the four-year period)


Kosovo’s citizens are truly a tech savvy nation, and statistics below reaffirms that, but more needs to be done from a social policy perspective by re-evaluating the entire employment scheme, as well as the immediate attention of the governmental structure, as well as the NGOs who cover the field.

While the IT sector is booming, the younger generation are migrating, not because of any political persecution, nor for the lack of skills or knowledge, but for a monthly salary!…the root cause, that derives from political immaturity or ‘impotence’ that has plagued the country for decades!

Key Note statistics;

Internet usage in Kosovo in 2022;

–         In January 2022, in Kosovo there were about 1.72 million internet users.

–         Internet penetration rate in Kosovo was 97.0 percent of the total population at the beginning of 2022,

Social media statistics for Kosovo in 2022;

–         In January 2022 in Kosovo there were 1.04 million social media users.

–         The number of social media users in Kosovo at the beginning of 2022 was equal to 58.5 percent of the total population

Data published in Meta’s advertising resources indicates that;

–         Facebook had 869.2 thousand users in Kosovo in early 2022, while

–         Instagram had 582.9 thousand users in Kosovo in early 2022.


* important to note that social media users may not represent unique individuals statistics from datareportal