Following the declaration of independence adopted by the Kosovo Assembly, the EU has presented itself as leading statebuilding agency in Pristina.
The institutional reorganization of post-UNMIK Kosovo is going to be pursued with the combination of technical/economic instruments, the deployment of a rule-of-law missions, and the overall supervision of a mixed EU/international civilian presence. Moreover, differently from other internationally-led operations of the same kind, the EU-driven State-building hinges on the promise of future membership.
Success will depend on a complex combination of factors. The EU faces many challenges on the ground; however, it must also work on the consolidation of its “internal front”. While the field presence in Kosovo has been backed by generalized support, Brussels must still win over those Member States that have been reluctant to establish formal relations with Kosovo on a bilateral basis. There is the clear risk that lacking unanimous support from each member of the EU-27 family, the integration of the ex-Serb province in the EU might be frozen for years, even if on administrative grounds the state-building process is completed in a relatively short time frame.