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PROFILE Geography Area: 25,713 square km. (slightly larger than Vermont). Cities (2001 est.): Capital--Skopje 600,000; Tetovo, Kumanovo, Gostivar, and Bitola 100,000+. Geography: Situated in the southern region of the Balkan Peninsula, Macedonia is landlocked and mountainous. Climate: Three climatic types overlap--Mediterranean; moderately continental; and mountainous, producing hot, dry summers and cold, snowy winters. People Population (2006 est.): 2,053,799. Population growth rate (2006 est.): 0.2%. Ethnic groups (2002): Macedonian 64.18%, Albanian 25.17%, Turkish 3.85%, Roma 2.66%, Serb 1.78%. Religions: Eastern Orthodox 65%, Muslim 29%, Catholic 4% and others 2%. Languages: Macedonian 70%, Albanian 21%, Turkish 3%, Serbian 3%, and others 3%. Education: Years compulsory--12. Literacy--94.6%. Health (2006 est.): Infant mortality rate--10.8 deaths/per 1,000 live births. Life expectancy (2006 est.)--males 71.79 years; females 76.43 years. Labor force (third quarter 2009): 940,661; employed 642,541: services--36.0%; industry and commerce--45.4%; agriculture--18.6%. Government Type: Parliamentary democracy. Constitution: Adopted November 17, 1991, effective November 20, 1991; amended 2001, 2005, and 2009. (Note: Amended November 2001 by a series of new constitutional amendments
Legal system is based on civil law. Socialist Party (Ljubisav Ivanov Dzingo). Suffrage: Universal at age 18.. Party for European Future or PEI (Fijat Canoski). Branches: Executive--prime minister (head of government). in 2005 with amendments related to the judiciary. Trade: Significant exports--steel. Liberal Party (Borce Stojanovski). chromium.): 44.S. $1.8%. is the most heavily populated. Per capita GDP (2009 est. VMRO-Macedonian (Borislav Stojmenov). council of ministers (cabinet).): -1. Economy GDP (2009 est. Democratic Party of Serbs in Macedonia (Ivan Stoiljkovic). Unemployment rate (third quarter 2009): 31. VMRO-DPMNE Democratic Party for Macedonian National Unity (Nikola Gruevski). nickel. where most ethnic Albanians live. Korab (peak 2. and in 2009 related to the census for the election of president. and wine.strengthening minority rights. textile products. Social-Democratic Union of Macedonia or SDSM (Branko Crvenkovski). Movement for Reconstruction of Macedonia or DOM (Liljana Popovska). It shares a border with Greece to the south. Main political parties: Democratic Alliance or DS (Pavie Trajanov). with 20 seats per unit). president (head of state). Public Prosecutor's Office. $1. New Alternative (Gjorgji Orovcanec). Democratic Union for Integration or BDI/DUI (Ali Ahmeti). Official exchange rate (2009 avg. rising to its highest point at Mt.473 billion.): $9. the percentage of ethnic Albanians living in Macedonia rose threefold. judicial review of legislative acts. lead.13 Macedonian denars = U.) Independence: September 8.83 Macedonian denars = U.764 meters). Legislative--unicameral parliament or Sobranie (120 members elected by popular vote to 4-year terms from party lists based on the percentage parties gain of the overall vote in each of six election units. New SocialDemocratic Party or NSDP (Tito Petkovski). Bulgaria to the east. (2008 avg. Party for Democratic Action in Macedonia or SDAM (Avdija Pepic). Union of Roma of Macedonia (Amdi Bajram).): 41. Serbia and Kosovo to the north. From 1953 through the time of the latest official census in 2002 (initial official results were released December 2003). GEOGRAPHY Macedonia is located in the heart of south central Europe. Real GDP growth (2009 est. lamb. Democratic Party of Turks in Macedonia (Kenan Hasipi).5%. Constitutional Court. The country is 80% mountainous. Annualized inflation rate (2009 est.S. zinc.000. tobacco. Public Attorney. 1991 (from Yugoslavia). with the greatest increases occurring in the ethnic Albanian community. Subdivisions: 84 opstini (municipalities) plus the city of Skopje. Judicial--Supreme Court.): $9. Macedonia's population has grown steadily. PEOPLE Since the end of the Second World War.7%. State Judicial Council. Democratic Party of the Albanians PDSh/DPA (Menduh Thaci). Liberal Democratic Party (Jovan Manasijevski). with approximately . United for Macedonia or OM (Ljube Boskovski). New Democracy or DR (Imer Selmani). and Albania to the west. The western part of the country. Consumer Price Index-based): -0.
After the fall of the Western Roman Empire. During this time. After more than four centuries of rule. and Serbia were competing for influence in the territory. The new Macedonian constitution took effect November 20. Following Ottoman Turkey's defeat by the allied Balkan countries--Bulgaria. and by the middle of the 19th century. people have moved into the cities in search of employment. Serbia. Croats. Vardar Macedonia (the present day area of the Republic of Macedonia) was incorporated into the newly formed Kingdom of Serbs. 1991 and called for a system of government based on a parliamentary democracy. It was during this period that large groups of Slavic people migrated to the Balkan region. The August 1913 Treaty of Bucharest ended this conflict by dividing the territory between Bulgaria. was marked by sporadic nationalist uprisings. a nationalist movement emerged and grew in Macedonia. giving rise to a rich and varied cultural and historical tradition. and Slovenes. HISTORY Throughout its history. The first democratically elected coalition government was led by Prime Minister Branko Crvenkovski of the Social Democratic Union of Macedonia (SDSM) and included the ethnic . Throughout much of the Second World War. culminating in the Ilinden Uprising of August 2. which was put down by Ottoman forces after 10 days. Macedonian revolutionaries liberated the town of Krushevo and established the short-lived Republic of Krushevo. Macedonian culture and language flourished. During this period. Each of these transiting powers left its mark upon the region. Bulgaria. Ottoman power in the region began to wane. the same allies fought the Second Balkan War over the division of Macedonia. Macedonia was the only republic of the former Yugoslavia whose secession in 1991 was not clouded by ethnic or other armed conflict. the territory of Macedonia fell under the control of the Byzantine Empire in the 6th and 7th centuries. Bulgaria. The Ottoman Turks conquered the territory in the 15th century. and continuing into the early part of the 20th century. Greece. Macedonia followed its other federation partners and declared its independence from Yugoslavia in late 1991. and Serbia. Macedonia became one of the constituent republics of the new Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia under Marshall Tito. As communism fell throughout Eastern Europe in the late 20th century. The latter half of the 19th century. The 1919 Treaty of Versailles sanctioned partitioning Macedonia between The Kingdom of Serbs. and Greece. Croats and Slovenes. In the wake of the First World War. Greece. Following the war. although the ethnic Albanian population declined to participate in the referendum on independence. 1903. Bulgaria and Italy occupied Macedonia. Macedonia has also experienced sustained high rates of permanent or seasonal emigration. Many citizens joined partisan movements during this time and succeeded in liberating the region in late 1944. it remained under Ottoman Turkish rule until 1912. As in many countries.40% of the total population. and Greece--during the First Balkan War in autumn 1912. the present-day territory of Macedonia has been a crossroads for both traders and conquerors moving between the European continent and Asia Minor. Montenegro.
In November 1998 parliamentary elections. a cease-fire was brokered in July 2001. During the Yugoslav period. leading many in the ethnic Albanian community in Macedonia to question their minority protection under. In accordance with the terms of the Macedonian constitution. 1999 partial re-vote in 230 polling stations. which the Macedonian Supreme Court mandated due to election irregularities. The Macedonian parliament adopted the constitutional changes outlined in the accord in November 2001. and European Union (EU) diplomats. A new coalition government emerged under the leadership of Prime Minister Ljubco Georgievski of the Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization-Democratic Party for Macedonian National Unity (VMRO-DPMNE). the government. The initial coalition included the ethnic Albanian Democratic Party of Albanians (DPA). rapidly began to gain political currency in late 2000. negotiated and then signed the Ohrid Framework Agreement in August 2001. Under international mediation. retained their own distinct political culture and language. which laid the foundation for improved civil rights for minority groups. He was succeeded by former Deputy Foreign Minister Boris Trajkovski (VMRO-DPMNE).S. in particular ethnic Albanians. . most of Macedonia's Slavic population identified themselves as Macedonians. Although interethnic tensions simmered under Yugoslav authority and during the first decade of its independence. The insurgency spread through northern and western Macedonia during the first half of 2001. Purporting to fight for greater civil rights for ethnic Albanians in Macedonia. the group seized territory and launched attacks against government forces. and the government coalition was expanded in July 2001 to form a grand coalition which included the major opposition parties. The expanded coalition of ruling ethnic Macedonian and ethnic Albanian political leaders. The agreement called for implementation of constitutional and legislative changes. who defeated Tito Petkovski (SDSM) in a second-round run-off election for the presidency on November 14. the SDSM lost its majority. President Gligorov was the first president of a former Yugoslav republic to relinquish office. including DPA and several smaller parties. the country avoided ethnically motivated conflict until several years after independence. which included surviving a car bombing assassination attempt on October 3 in 1995. Tensions erupted into open hostilities in Macedonia in February 2001. which brought an end to the fighting. completed its parliamentary term. Trajkovski's election was confirmed by a December 5. when a group of ethnic Albanians near the Kosovo border carried out armed provocations that soon escalated into an insurgency. 1999. A coalition led by Prime Minister Georgievski. including support for criminality and the assertion of political control over affected areas. his presidency ended in November 1999 after 8 years in office. which had erupted on occasion (1995 and 1997). The grand coalition disbanded following the signing of the Ohrid Framework Agreement and the passage of new constitutional amendments. while several minority groups. with facilitation by U.Albanian Party for Democratic Prosperity (PDP). Ethnic minority grievances. Many observers ascribed other motives to the so-called National Liberation Army (NLA). and participation in. Kiro Gligorov became the first President of an independent Macedonia.
2004 President Trajkovski died in a plane crash in Bosnia. On February 26. Next regular parliamentary elections should be in 2012. Consensus on extending a NATO membership invitation could not be reached. the opposition DUI party. the SDSM-DUI-LDP governing coalition completed the legislative implementation of the Ohrid Framework Agreement. and several smaller parties. as Prime Minister June 2. in collaboration with the governing VMRO-DPMNE and DPA parties. Macedonia held presidential and local elections in March (first round) and April (second round). 2004. A November 7. Local elections were held in March-April 2005 under a new territorial reorganization plan that consolidated the overall number of Macedonia's municipalities and created a number of ethnically-mixed municipalities in which ethnic Albanian populations were dominant. an SDSM-led pre-election coalition won half of the 120 seats in parliament. all 26 NATO Allies agreed Macedonia had met the criteria for membership. maintaining the coalition with the ethnic Albanian Democratic Union for Integration (DUI) and the Liberal-Democratic (LDP) parties. in coalition with DPA. The parliament confirmed Hari Kostov. called for the dissolution of parliament and for early parliamentary elections. The July 2006 parliamentary elections resulted in a VMRO-DPMNE-led government under Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski assuming power.In September 2002 elections. former Defense Minister Vlado Buckovski was confirmed by parliament as Prime Minister. With international assistance. On July 26. 2004 referendum opposing the law on new municipal organization failed. Prime Minister Gruevski was reconfirmed in office with a new coalition along with the DUI party and one smaller party. Members are elected by popular vote . The process of decentralization began in the new municipalities in July 2005 and is continuing. At NATO's Bucharest Summit in April 2008. Following the Bucharest Summit. Then-Prime Minister Branko Crvenkovski won the second round and was inaugurated President on May 12. but Kostov resigned on November 15 of the same year. Branko Crvenkovski was elected Prime Minister in coalition with the ethnic Albanian Democratic Union for Integration (DUI) party and the Liberal-Democratic Party (LDP). which were held in June 2008. In the presidential race. VMRO-DPMNE candidate Gjorge Ivanov won with 64% of the vote. which is a precondition for Macedonia's integration into Euro-Atlantic institutions. GOVERNMENT AND POLITICAL CONDITIONS The unicameral assembly (Sobranie) consists of 120 seats. 2004. 2004. 2006. In 2009. stated its commitment to completing Framework Agreement implementation and reaffirmed its commitment to pursuing NATO and EU membership. former Interior Minister. NSDP. freeing the way for the government to complete Framework Agreement implementation. The new government. which was confirmed in office by a parliamentary vote on August 26. 2004. On December 17. Presidential elections were held April 14 and 28. due to the unresolved dispute with Greece over Macedonia's name.
IL 60601 (tel: (312) 419-8020. It maintains a Consulate General in Detroit: 2000 Town Center. Suite 2036. DC 20008 (tel: (202) 667-0501. NW. and a Consulate General in Chicago: 121 West Wackor Drive. MI 48075 (tel: (248) 354-5537. Washington.from party lists. He also appoints the Chief of the Defense Staff (CHOD) and the head of the intelligence agency. The court system consists of a Supreme Court. Suite 1130. Its judges are appointed by parliament without time limit. fax: (312) 419-8040). without the possibility of re-election. direct ballot and has a term of 5 years. The President is elected by general. The President represents Macedonia at home and abroad. The Prime Minister and other ministers must not be members of parliament. Its 9 judges are appointed by parliament with a mandate of 9 years. Chicago. Principal Government Officials President--Gjorge Ivanov Prime Minister--Nikola Gruevski Deputy Prime Minister (Economic Affairs)--Vladimir Pesevski Deputy Prime Minister (Euro-Atlantic Integration)--Vasko Naumovski Deputy Prime Minister (Framework Agreement Implementation)--Abdulaqim Ademi Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister--Zoran Stavreski Foreign Minister--Antonio Milososki Education Minister--Nikola Todorov Information Society Minister--Ivo Ivanovski Defense Minister--Zoran Konjanovski Economy Minister--Fatmir Besimi Interior Minister--Gordana Jankuloska Agriculture. The Constitutional Court is responsible for the protection of constitutional and legal rights and for resolving conflicts of power between the three branches of government. and local and appeals courts. fax: (202) 667-2131). The Supreme Court is the highest court in the country and is responsible for the equal administration of laws by all courts. with the right to one re-election. Forestry and Water Minister--Ljupco Dimovski Justice Minister--Mihajlo Manevski Ambassador to the United States--Zoran Jolevski Ambassador to the United Nations--Slobodan Tasovski The country maintains an embassy in the United States at 2129 Wyoming Ave. An independent Public Prosecutor is appointed by parliament with a 6year mandate. Constitutional Court. The Prime Minister is the head of government and is selected by the party or coalition that gains a majority of seats in parliament. Southfield. based on the percentage parties gain of the overall vote in each of six election districts of 20 seats each. He is the commander in chief of the armed forces of Macedonia and heads its Security Council. fax: (248) 354-5538). The State Judicial Council monitors the ethical conduct of judges and recommends to parliament the election of judges. Members of parliament have a 4-year mandate. .
A largely obsolete industrial infrastructure has not seen much investment during the transition period. Without adequate job opportunities.6% at the end of 2009. The government's fiscal policy. However. due in part to poor government results in combating corruption.5% in 2001. and 2008 (4.ECONOMY Macedonia is a small economy with a gross domestic product (GDP) of about $9. and poor restructuring of the private sector affected Macedonia's growth and foreign trade prospects through 2004. In 2009. The government's painful but necessary structural reforms and macroeconomic stabilization program generated additional economic dislocation. Macedonia.01% of the total world output. In 2004. and the 1999 crisis in neighboring Kosovo delivered successive shocks to Macedonia's trade-dependent economy. representing about 0.1%). but the services sector has gained the lead in the last few years. the economy was affected by the world economic crisis. and attracting increased levels of foreign investment. market-oriented society with substantial amounts of assistance. and Consumer Price Index (CPI)based inflation was negative 0.1%). and constitution. highly integrated into international trade. with a total trade-to-GDP ratio of 81. 2005 (4. 2007 (5. Real GDP is estimated to have fallen by 1. Labor force education and skills are competitive in some technical areas and industries but significantly lacking in others.0%). Economic problems persist. and modest economic growth rate are the central economic problems. A relatively low standard of living.8%. economic growth remained sub-par in 2005 and 2006. The impact of the 2001 ethnic Albanian insurgency in Macedonia.9%). canceled contracts in the textile and iron and steel industry.5% for 2009.4 billion. aligned with International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank policies. 2006 (4. and by international trade sanctions against Serbia that were not suspended until a month after conclusion of the Dayton Accords. Living standards still lag behind those enjoyed before independence. many with the best skills seek employment abroad. This has allowed the government to refocus energies on domestic reforms. even as Macedonia undertakes structural reforms to finish the transition to a market-oriented economy. boosting economic growth. Background After the breakup of Yugoslavia in 1991.8%) and continued in 2004 (4. Five years of continuous economic expansion in Macedonia was interrupted by the 2001 conflict. Macedonia's economy was hurt especially by a trade embargo imposed by Greece in February 1994 in a dispute over the country's name. although the financial sector remained sound. high unemployment rate. faced formidable economic challenges posed by both the transition to a market economy and a difficult regional situation. It is an open economy. international sanctions on Serbia. the former Yugoslavia's poorest republic.8%). decreased international demand for Macedonian products. flag. and guaranteeing shareholder rights. which led to a contraction of 4. Growth started to pick up in 2003 (2. providing tax and investment incentives. The war in Bosnia. secure. Agriculture and industry have been the two most important sectors of the economy in the past. the government passed a progressive Trade Companies Law aimed at easing impediments to foreign investment. a . helped maintain a stable macroeconomic environment which sent promising signals to investors. The breakup deprived Macedonia of key protected markets and large transfer payments from the central Yugoslav government. The United States is supporting Macedonia's transition to a democratic. Macedonia's political and security situation is stable.
the Central Bank introduced new liquidity indicators for banks. thus annulling the progress of 5. A very conservative monetary policy caused the economy to enter into deflation.8% on annual basis.7% less than in 2008. followed by a 4. Macedonia's moderate economic growth was halted by the world economic crisis in 2009. The current account balance significantly improved in the second half of 2009 and was expected to be within the targeted 9.3% drop in transport and communication services. increased the reserve requirement. Trade terms in 2009 significantly worsened due to the world economic crisis. It provided business incentives by cutting rates on profit tax and personal income tax and implemented a so-called "regulatory guillotine"--an activity which reduced procedures and legislative requirements for doing business. and manufacturing industry. quarrying. and high domestic finance costs. social contributions rates on salaries are being gradually reduced.8% of GDP. and a regulatory impact assessment (RIA) procedure is being carried out to re-evaluate legislation for doing business. but one that could raise concerns if fiscal performance were to continue this pattern in the mid.5% of GDP by the end of 2009. Foreign currency reserves significantly dropped in the first half of . which hit the real sector strongly. creating a huge trade deficit of about 25% of GDP. albeit one that was far less severe than in many transition and developed economies.7% in the third quarter of 2009. This was primarily due to a large inflow of private transfers in the second half of 2009. Reinvested profits became tax free.4% and exports by 32. despite poor foreign direct investment (FDI) of about $170 million by end-October 2009.weak judiciary. The biggest fall was 13.4% of GDP at endNovember 2009. with the cumulative CPI dropping by 0.4% in the mining. and put a ceiling on credit to households. In addition.8%. it launched an expensive marketing campaign promoting the country as a good investment destination and put in place a one-stop process for business registration that considerably shortened the time required to register a new business. the Government of Macedonia needed to make a fiscal adjustment twice in 2009 to fit within the budget deficit target of 2.to long term. Industrial output in 2009 was 7. In addition.8% growth in 2008. Faced with poor revenue collection. Total budget revenues in 2009 were down 8. Lower price indices for transport by 10% and for recreation and culture by 4.3%. which ultimately curbed credit to private sector expansion to just 3. The monetary policy response to increased Treasury bill rates was to increase the Central Bank bills rate in 2009 to 9%.1% drop in hotel and restaurant services and a 2.2% were the main drivers of the CPI’s fall. although the financial sector remained sound and stable.9% growth in 2007 and 4. imports fell by 26. fiscal policy required borrowing at high rates domestically and abroad to be able to cover fiscal expenditures. a level still considered moderate. This resulted in increased public debt to 32.5%. while expenditures remained about the same. poor contract enforcement. Exports dropped dramatically and the economy entered into a recession.7% from 2008. Macroeconomy Real GDP dropped in the third quarter of 2009 by 1. In 2007. The official unemployment rate came down a bit to 31. The new government that took office in August 2006 put the fight against corruption and attracting foreign investors at the very top of its priority list.
In March 2007.3 billion. In December 2005. Russia.2009 to a level that seriously threatened the ability of the Central Bank to preserve the stability of the domestic currency. Total trade in 2009 (imports plus exports of goods and services) was $7. Macedonia's major trading partners are Germany. apparel. or about 25% of GDP.873 billion in 2008. Bosnia and Herzegovina.6% of Macedonia's total trade was with EU 27 countries. professional defense force of about 12. Turkey. navy.S. exports accounted for 2. and the European Free Trade Association countries. Under its North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Membership Action Plan. or 30. withdrawing $65 million from its IMF quota. In 2009. obtaining candidate country status for EU accession. Bilateral agreements with Albania. A significant 53.734 billion. giving Macedonia duty-free access to European markets. it moved a step forward. Croatia.352 billion. Macedonia has made strong strides on major reforms and reconstruction of its armed forces toward the goal of building and sustaining a modern. Greece. DEFENSE Macedonia established its armed forces following independence and the complete withdrawal of the Yugoslav National Army (JNA) in March 1992. By separate countries. Macedonia has free trade agreements with Ukraine. which reached a record high of $2.2 million. After the conclusion of its 3-year Stand-By Arrangement (SBA) with the IMF in August 2008. and electrical machinery and equipment have been particularly attractive to Macedonian importers. and iron and steel. meat. In 2009. and the trade deficit amounted to $2. the Government of Macedonia received approval from the World Bank for a credit facility for local government development worth $19 million. mainly poultry. The Macedonian Armed Forces consist of an army. UN Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK). which could potentially bring to the country total lending of up to $280 million. U. the Government of Macedonia’s borrowing 175 million euros (about $245 million) abroad by selling a Eurobond. U. Montenegro. Serbia. the World Bank Board adopted a new 4-year Country Partnership Strategy for Macedonia. total trade between Macedonia and the United States was $120. and $20 million in direct support. and Moldova were replaced with membership in the Central European Free Trade Agreement (CEFTA). It became a full World Trade Organization (WTO) member in April 2003. which the other countries joined in December 2006. The IMF concluded its regular Article IV Consultation with Macedonia in October 2009 and the IMF Board approved the staff report in January 2010.000 troops.S.2% of Macedonia's total imports. and the recovery of private transfers brought up the reserves to the pre-crisis level of about $2.2% of GDP. Trade Macedonia remains committed to pursuing membership in the European Union and NATO. Serbia. Macedonia has had a foreign trade deficit since 1994. or well over 4 months of import coverage. Macedonia signed a Stabilization and Association Agreement with the EU in April 2001. . and Italy. the Government of Macedonia decided not to request additional financial assistance from the IMF. Following a 1997 cooperation agreement with the European Union (EU). Principal Macedonian exports to the United States are tobacco. However. and a police force (under the Ministry of Interior). air and air defense force.
S. the OSCE. hosting the logistical supply line for KFOR troops in Kosovo. the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). Macedonia enjoys good relations with its neighbors. It has strong trade and tourism ties with Greece.000 refugees from the violence and ethnic cleansing in Kosovo. As part of these efforts. more affordable. In pursuit of these goals. and security institutions as the country's primary foreign policy goal. Macedonia and Kosovo completed demarcation of their shared border and established formal diplomatic relations in October 2009. Macedonia has contributed troops to international coalition operations in Iraq. economic.-Macedonian bilateral defense cooperation continues. Macedonia continues to play an indispensable role as the Kosovo Force's (KFOR) rear area. military and seeks to deepen this relationship as it restructures its forces.S. Following the resolution of the conflict. and interoperable with NATO. defensively oriented. Athens and Skopje began talks on the name issue in New York under UN auspices in December 1995. Macedonia ultimately was able to accommodate the influx. troops. A small number of Roma refugees from Kosovo remains in Macedonia. Macedonia has made important strides toward Euro-Atlantic integration. Relations with Kosovo are good. and has developed similarly robust political and trade ties with Albania and Bulgaria. Macedonia is restructuring its military to be smaller. Macedonia joined the Council of Europe. Greece and Macedonia signed an interim accord in October 1995 ending the embargo and opening the way to diplomatic recognition and increased trade. Close U.S. These talks continue. although a dispute between the Macedonian Orthodox Church and the Serb Orthodox Church has strained ties over the past several years.Successive Macedonian governments have viewed integration into Euro-Atlantic political. with Macedonia having signed an Interim Free Trade Agreement with UNMIK in 2005 and with regular bilateral political contacts occurring between Pristina and Skopje since 2005. The stability of the young state was gravely tested during the 1999 Kosovo crisis. The refugee influx put significant stress on Macedonia's weak social infrastructure. Relations between Belgrade and Skopje are good overall. and . most of them housed in the predominantly Roma municipality of Suto Orizari in the Skopje suburbs. including U. The Macedonian Government has welcomed close cooperation with the U. Macedonia is an active participant in NATO's Partnership for Peace and Membership Action Plan. FOREIGN RELATIONS In February 1994. when Macedonia temporarily hosted about 360. and continues to have troops in Afghanistan and in the EU peace support operation in Bosnia and Herzegovina. opening liaison offices in respective capitals January 1996. With the help of NATO and the international community. and supported by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). the overwhelming majority of refugees returned to Kosovo. Greece imposed a trade embargo on Macedonia due to disputes over the use of the name "Macedonia" and other issues. and NATO's Partnership for Peace (PfP). After signing the agreement with Greece. with 4% of its military. Macedonia recognized Kosovo’s independence in October 2008. in support of NATO operations in Kosovo and to assist Macedonia's efforts to reform its military to meet NATO standards. Macedonia hosts NATO troops.
and the U. Macedonia and the United States enjoy a cooperative relationship . At the April 2009 Strasbourg-Kehl Summit. The United States strongly supports Macedonia's aspirations for full integration into EuroAtlantic institutions. strongly condemned the initiators of the 2001 insurgency in Macedonia and closely supported the government and major parties' successful efforts to forge a peaceful. the EU agreed to pursue a Stabilization and Association Agreement (SAA) with Macedonia. Albania and Croatia received invitations to join the Alliance. Liaison Office was upgraded to an Embassy in February 1996. In December 2005. Ambassador to Skopje arrived in July 1996. Today. In partnership with the EU and other international organizations active in Macedonia. NATO Allies noted that Macedonia met NATO membership criteria. the European Council granted candidate country status to Macedonia.) peacekeepers in Kosovo. 1994.S. The United States believes Macedonia has met the performance-based standards for membership. The development of political relations between the United States and Macedonia has ushered in a whole host of other contacts between the two states.United Nations. and was accepted as a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO) in October 2002.S. In May 2003.S.S. the Adriatic Charter countries have cooperated closely in regional military exercises. but could not reach consensus on issuing an invitation for membership. Its trade and trade-related provisions have been in force since June 2001. and the two countries established full diplomatic relations on September 13. In October 2009. modeled on the Baltic Charter. negotiations with Macedonia were launched April 5. the United States is facilitating the Macedonian Government's implementation of the Framework Agreement and fostering long-term peace and stability in the country. At the NATO Bucharest Summit in April 2008. in the absence of a solution to Macedonia's dispute with NATO member Greece over Macedonia's name. 2000. created the Adriatic Charter. The United States. together with its European allies. Croatia. Allies re-confirmed the commitment to invite Macedonia to join NATO as soon as the name issue is resolved.-MACEDONIAN RELATIONS The United States and Macedonia have enjoyed good bilateral relations since Macedonia gained its independence in 1991. The United States formally recognized Macedonia on February 8. political solution to the crisis through the Ohrid Framework Agreement. 1995. U. Macedonia. The U. In 1999. Macedonia continues to make an important contribution to regional stability by facilitating the logistical supply of NATO (including U. the European Commission recommended that Macedonia commence EU accession negotiations. Since then. In December 2009 European Council deferred discussion of a start date for negotiations. and have deployed a joint medical team to support international coalition operations in Afghanistan. Albania.S. The SAA was signed April 2001 and came into force in April 2004. the Council provided the Government of Macedonia a list of benchmarks to guide Macedonia's preparations to open formal accession negotiations. In March 2008. as a mechanism for promoting regional cooperation to advance each country's NATO candidacy. and the first U. The Adriatic Charter expanded to include Bosnia-Herzegovina and Montenegro as members in December 2008.
efficient. and strengthening parliament. and social issues. assistance has been to assist Macedonia in implementing the August 2001 Framework Agreement. and improve the transparency and efficiency of government services through technology. Complementing its assistance in Macedonia's political and economic transition. a more vibrant civil society. introducing information and communication technology . build the capacity of the administration to implement them. USAID programs improve education and human capacity in Macedonia through projects on the primary. and market-oriented multiethnic society with large amounts of foreign assistance for democracy and economic reforms. Department of Justice Resident Legal Advisor and a Senior Law Enforcement Advisor focus on strengthening the independence of the judiciary. Bilateral assistance budgeted to Macedonia under the Support for East European Democracy (SEED) Act totaled over $500 million from 1990 to 2010. USAID is focused on helping the Macedonian Government and civil society combat corruption. Agency for International Development (USAID) programs in Macedonia promote accelerated growth. and abating trafficking in persons and organized crime.S. Training programs that provide career-enhancing education to prepare youth and adults for growth sectors are also supported. assistance is to facilitate Macedonia's transition to a market economy and increase employment and growth levels. and projects to strengthen rule of law and improve education. support stronger democratic institutions. Successful completion of the decentralization process is a remaining priority for framework implementation. supporting government decentralization. and accountable branch of government. The United States has supported Macedonia's progress in building a democratic. secure. At the micro-level. USAID will support the Government of Macedonia to align the domestic energy system to EU norms. assistance is given to firms and agribusinesses to increase their competitiveness and productivity. USAID also supported the State Commission for Prevention of Corruption in developing a comprehensive State Program for Prevention of Conflict of Interest and assisted in training over 150 judges and prosecutors in dealing with conflict of interest cases.S. and help introduce energy efficiency interventions in households and the business sector. a focus of U. In the energy area. increasing police capacity. coupled with initiatives to attract foreign investment and stimulate local investment and support creation of new jobs and new enterprises. USAID is also focused on promoting an independent and efficient judiciary. efficacy of public prosecution. A further priority of U. programs target improvements in the business-enabling environment by helping to bring legislative and regulatory frameworks in line with EU standards. economic. defense reforms. and promoting the rule of law.S. cultural. USAID economic assistance is focused on two levels. USAID provides technical and material support to assist the Macedonian judiciary in developing into a more independent. secondary.across a broad range of political. and post-secondary levels. U. A U.S. Macedonia received approximately $19 million in SEED Act assistance in 2009 and will receive approximately $23 million in 2010. build institutional capacity to develop and implement energy policies. transparent. capable of standing on an equal basis with other government branches. In the democracy sector. military. enhancing democratic political competition. and help educate Macedonians for a modern economy. reform of criminal codes. Targets include improving teaching techniques. modernizing vocational education. At the macro-level.
state. Todd Brown The U. citizens traveling or residing abroad to register via the State Department's travel registration website or at the nearest U.gov. Travel Alerts. Consular Affairs Publications. embassies and consulates abroad. For additional information on international travel.travel. crime. are also available at http://www.S.gov/p/eur/rls/or/104441. and focusing on workforce development activities in schools. Americans living and traveling abroad should regularly monitor the Department's Bureau of Consular Affairs Internet web site at http://www.gov. Principal U. and Travel Warnings. The Department of State encourages all U. Embassy in Macedonia is located at Str. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Foreign Minister Antonio Milososki signed a joint Declaration of Strategic Partnership and Cooperation affirming the determination of our governments to further expand and deepen the partnership between our two countries based upon common goals.S. The full text of the declaration is available at http://2001-2009. 21. political disturbances. and the addresses of the U.travel. Reeker Deputy Chief of Mission--Brian Aggeler USAID Mission Director--Michael Fritz Political and Economic Affairs--David Burger Economic/Commercial Affairs--Darren Hultman Consul--Carolyn Gorman Management Affairs--Matthew Spivak Public Affairs--Angela Aggeler Defense Attaché--Col. and Travel Warnings can be found.S.state. health conditions. where the current Worldwide Caution. 1000 Skopje (tel:  (2) 310-2000. applying accurate school-based assessment techniques. Department of State's Consular Information Program advises Americans traveling and residing abroad through Country Specific Information. TRAVEL AND BUSINESS INFORMATION The U. performance improvement of key institutions. safety and security. 2008. embassy or consulate . including interethnic cooperation. which contain information on obtaining passports and planning a safe trip abroad. see http://www.shtml. and values. For the latest security information. interests. Travel Warnings are issued when the State Department recommends that Americans avoid travel to a certain country because the situation is dangerous or unstable. Travel Alerts.S. Country Specific Information exists for all countries and includes information on entry and exit requirements. On May 7. Officials Ambassador--Philip T. and corruption.gov/Citizen/Topics/Travel/International. currency regulations. “Samoilova” Nr. fax:  (2) 310-2299). Other programs address crosscutting issues.S.S.usa.(ICT) as a learning tool in the classroom. Travel Alerts are issued to disseminate information quickly about terrorist threats and other relatively short-term conditions overseas that pose significant risks to the security of American travelers.state.htm. assistance to the Roma minority.
.m. companies working abroad through its website http://www.cdc.gov/travel/contentYellowBook. the Department of State web site provides timely. Eastern Time.S. Available on the Internet at http://www.gov/travel/default.m. including Background Notes and daily press briefings along with the directory of key officers of Foreign Service posts and more. and more. Further Electronic Information Department of State Web Site.gov provides a portal to all export-related assistance and market information offered by the federal government and provides trade leads.state. foreign policy information. TDD/TTY: 1-888-874-7793. Emergency information concerning Americans traveling abroad may be obtained by calling 1888-407-4747 toll free in the U.aspx. immunization recommendations or requirements. help with the export process. and advice on food and drinking water safety for regions and countries.osac.S. centralized public contact center for U.S. Travelers can check the latest health information with the U.S.abroad. and Canada.S. Georgia.S.cdc. Passport information is available 24 hours. 7 days a week. You may speak with a representative Monday-Friday. The Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) provides security information and regional news that impact U.. to 10 p. free export counseling.gov Export. The National Passport Information Center (NPIC) is the U. passport information. Registration will make your presence and whereabouts known in case it is necessary to contact you in an emergency and will enable you to receive up-to-date information on security conditions.aspx give the most recent health advisories.S. global access to official U.gov. Telephone: 1-877-4-USA-PPT (1-877-487-2778). and Canada or the regular toll line 1-202-501-4444 for callers outside the U. 8 a. The CDC publication "Health Information for International Travel" can be found at http://wwwn. Department of State's single. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. A hotline at 800-CDC-INFO (800-232-4636) and a web site at http://wwwn. excluding federal holidays.
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