Northern Macedonia remains firmly committed to its full EU membership, and all its diplomatic efforts are aimed at promoting good neighborly relations and regional co-operation in line with the European perspective. This is also a high priority of our foreign policy.
This message was sent yesterday from Rome by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Bujar Osmani, during his meetings in the Italian capital with senior Italian officials and the Secretary of State for Relations with the Holy See, Monsignor Paul Richard Gallagher.
Osmani said European reforms in northern Macedonia need to continue, especially in the areas of the rule of law and the fight against crime and corruption.
At the meetings, it was agreed that the start of accession negotiations will bring numerous benefits, both to Northern Macedonia and the region, but also to the credibility of the EU’s efforts to complete the European integration process.
“We stand firm on the path of European integration. European reforms need to continue, especially in the areas of the rule of law, with visible results and in the fight against crime and corruption. We must fully complete our preparations for the start of negotiations, complete the negotiating structure, strengthen the negotiating capacity. “Alignment with European rules and standards in the process of stabilization and association must continue, as well as the implementation of European legislation, as well as all activities that have a conditional European framework,” Osmani said at a meeting with his Italian counterpart Luigi Di Maio. .
The talks focused on European credibility in the region, which is closely linked to the credibility of the enlargement process, the harmonization of the negotiating framework for Northern Macedonia and Italy’s strong and active support for the opening of negotiations for Northern Macedonia.
Economic cooperation was also discussed. Osmani reminded that Italy is consistently among the top ten countries in terms of the size of trade cooperation with Northern Macedonia, which exceeds half a billion euros, while in 2019 it reached 720 million euros.
In the meeting with the Secretary for Relations of the Holy See, Monsignor Paul Richard Gallagher, emphasis was placed on the perspective of mutual relations and the active role of Northern Macedonia in promoting interfaith dialogue and respect for religious freedoms.
The interlocutors agreed that the historic apostolic visit of Pope Francis to the Republic of Northern Macedonia in May 2019, brought a new dimension to relations of almost three decades, full of friendship and mutual respect.
Possibilities for strengthening sectoral cooperation between the two countries were also examined, mainly in the fields of culture, protection of cultural and historical heritage, education and health.
“All diplomatic efforts and the high priority of our foreign policy aim at promoting good neighborly relations and regional cooperation, in order to ensure a European perspective for both Northern Macedonia and the entire region.” “The foundations of our organization, as a multinational and multi-confessional society, are a model of values that is part of the value system of Western civilization,” said Osmani, adding that “our efforts were welcomed and the hope was expressed that Macedonia’s integration “The North will develop in a way that will be beneficial to the entire Western Balkans.”
During his visit to Rome, the Foreign Minister also met with the exiles. In discussions with them, issues of interest to the diaspora were discussed, but the importance of registration was also stressed.
“We talked about other issues of interest to the diaspora, their concerns, needs, but also opportunities to improve communication with the country, opportunities to improve the availability of services used by citizens abroad, and the possibility of returning to Macedonia. North », Osmani wrote on his Facebook profile.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Northern Macedonia Bujar Osmani had a meeting with the Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs and Community of the Italian Parliament, Piero Fassino. Osmani posted on Twitter where he noted that there was a fruitful discussion on co-operation between Northern Macedonia and Italy. He stressed that good neighborly relations, regional co-operation and economic diplomacy are the cornerstone of priorities, based on a positive agenda and genuine initiatives.
Osman’s visit to Italy, according to the Foreign Ministry, comes at an extremely important time for the EU enlargement process.