Skopje: North Macedonia readiest in the region for negotiations with the EU

NEWS 17.02.2022 16:41
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North Macedonia's Deputy Prime Minister for European Affairs, Bojan Maricic, said on Thursday his country was the readiest in the region for negotiations with the European Union.

He told the country’s Committee on European Affairs that the European Commission Report for 2021 rated North Macedonia at 3.11 for overall preparedness, i.e., „good level of readiness“, but also that it was more ready than Serbia and Montenegro for negotiations in cluster 1 – Foundations.

„Cluster readiness unequivocally shows that North Macedonia has the highest readiness in the region, with an average score of 3.02, in areas and chapters of Cluster 1 – Foundations, even concerning countries already negotiating membership, Serbia with an average score of 2.68 and Montenegro with an average score of 2.83,“ Maricic said.

He adds that the EC report provides an objective overview of the state and progress in reforms and identifies areas where efforts need to be stepped up and more results delivered.

In an analysis by the Secretariat for European Affairs (North Macedonia), which was based on standardised methodology, Maricic said, "we also have a solid level of readiness in cluster 3 - Competitiveness and Inclusive Growth, where we are on a par with Montenegro; 4 - Green agenda and sustainable connection, where we are ranked with Serbia, which has already opened that cluster. "

The EC recommended the simultaneous start of negotiations with North Macedonia and Albania in 2019. Still, those countries had not yet started negotiations, first due to opposition from France and then the Bulgarian veto in late 2020.

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