The 11-th meeting of the Stabilisation and Association Committee between the Republic of Macedonia and the European Union has been held in Brussels
The Deputy Prime Minister of the Government of the Republic of Macedonia in charge of European Affairs, Fatmir Besimi, PhD, today (23.07.2014), has addressed to the 11th meeting of the Stabilisation and Association Council between the Republic of Macedonia and the European Union, held in Brussels, which was also attended by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Macedonia, Mr. Nikola Popovski.
The meeting was chaired by the Senator Benedetto della Vedova, Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Italy, and attended by the Commissioner Štefan Füle and the Director Fernando Gentilini.
At the meeting of the Stabilisation and Association Council has been noted that the Stabilisation and Association Agreement (SAA) remains in the core of the relation between the EU and the Republic of Macedonia untill the country's accession to the EU, and it provides also a contractual framework in which the EU and the country cooperate between each other and follow the development of the events in their mutual relation.
The Council has also pointed out the main objective of the country, i.e. the initiation of the negotiations for accession to the EU, confirming again its strong commitment to this objective, taking into account the recommendations of the European Commission.
The Deputy Prime Minister Besimi, in his addressing, has stated that the Euro-Atlantic Integration remains a strategic priority of the new Government of the Republic of Macedonia and that it will continue to work on the reforms and on the implementation of the priorities arising from the Progress Report and the conclusions of the European Council, such as the reforms in the judiciary and the strengthening of the confidence in the institutions, the human rights, the freedom of expression, the political dialogue, the good inter-ethnic relations, as well as the good neighbourly relations.
The Stabilisation and Association Council has reviewed the organising of the elections in April and the considerations by OSCE/ODIHR according to which the elections have been organised efficiently and has welcomed the electoral reforms, according to the recommendations of ODIHR.
According to the established practice of regular reporting on the implementation of the National Programme for the Adoption of the Acquis, the Deputy Prime Minister Besimi has addressed the revised National Programme for 2014 and has noted that in the process of the European Integration in the last years the key reforms that are part of the High Level Accession Dialogue (HLAD) have been implemented.
In his addressing, the Deputy Prime Minister Besimi has pointed out that the Republic of Macedonia continues with its pro-active contribution to the promotion of the bilateral relations with the neighbouring countries in the region. He said also, that Macedonia has been fully committed to overcoming all open issues, particularly those with the Republic of Greece and the Republic of Bulgaria.
The SA Council, in terms of the interethnic relations, has emphasized the importance of implementing the Ohrid Framework Agreement.
The SA Council has welcomed the continued active participation in and the constructive approach to the regional cooperation of the Republic of Macedonia , including in the initiatives in South-East Europe, such as the Regional Cooperation Council, the South-East European Cooperation Process, as well as the country's current Presidency with the Central European Free Trade Area (CEFTA). The SA Council has welcomed the upcoming Macedonian Presidency of the CEI.