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MACEDONIA


 

Key Economic Data 
 
  2003 2002 2001 Ranking(2003)
GDP
Millions of US $ 4,705 3,712 3,400 118
         
GNI per capita
 US $ 1,980 1,700 1,690 111
Ranking is given out of 208 nations - (data from the World Bank)

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Update No: 123 - (31/08/07)

The long haul
Macedonia is doing very well, but from an incredibly low base. It was by far the poorest of the former Yugoslav republics, with a per capita income one-fifth that of Slovenia. 
It, nevertheless, achieved great progress last year in the economic area; but there is a lot of work ahead because the mountain that should be conquered is very high. Mike Zafirovski, a highly successful businessman of Macedonian origin and a potential mentor of his country in the Soros mould, said this in Skopje after meeting with the Macedonian prime minister, Nikola Gruevski.

Zafirovski appeared thrilled with the results that were achieved in some areas, such as the GDP increase of 7 per cent, an export increase of 50 per cent, a somewhat successful struggle against corruption, and the introduction of a third mobile phone operator. He said this is a great start but that there is lot of work ahead, in several areas, such as judicial reforms.

The "Macedonia 2025" team
Mike Zafirovski is heading the "Macedonia 2025" team, an independent and non-political organization aimed towards helping identify, develop and promote several key industries in Macedonia.

"We have only one wish, Macedonia to become an economic power. We are aware that it couldn't be achieved overnight, that years are needed, so I gave the it the name Macedonia 2025", Zafirovski said.

Prime minister Gruevski informed the representatives of "Macedonia 2025" about the Government's activities in the past six months and the future plans. "At the meeting we discussed how to push with joint forces, several projects that will be of interest to the country", Gruevski said. He expects members of the "Macedonia 2025" team to lobby with foreign investors and business people.

Members of "Macedonia 2025" had meetings with many Macedonian businessmen, and were pleasantly surprised by their ideas and business plans. They think that Macedonia should be most interesting for foreign investors in four areas: production of automobile parts, high technology, food production and tourism.

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The following message, in tandem with the "Maceonia 2025" team, was delivered by the prime minister himself, from whom it is worth quoting:-

PM Gruevski in Krusevo: Let's make Macedonia a successful, prosperous country 
Friday, 03 August 2007 
Let's make Macedonia a successful, powerful, and dignified country, because only united will we win our battle, the battle of this generation, of our ideas and aspirations, Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski said in his address at the locality of Meckin Kamen near Krusevo. 

This is the acid test of Macedonia's future where success is a prerequisite, where we must not fail, something that we have been persistently working on. This should be a message that raises self-awareness, highlights responsibility of each and every one of us and strengthens the spirit. The message that will build the state and its future, Gruevski said, pointing out that if the battle of our predecessors was for a free and independent Macedonia - the current one is for a prosperous and economically powerful Macedonia. This is a battle for us, our children and Macedonia, Gruevski said, calling on all to join the efforts for turning this goals into reality, as only unity can lead to success. The oath 'freedom or death' is a portentous source, defined by Dame Gruev's words 'better horrible end than endless horror', Gruevski said, pointing out that these words incorporate the energy and awareness of independent, sovereign state - the Republic of Macedonia. Today we are celebrating a double National Holiday of Macedonia. 

1991 emerged as the independent and sovereign Republic of Macedonia - a unitary state of free and equal people, legitimate member of the United Nations and unitary state organizam that is heading towards generally accepted Euro-integration, Gruevski said.

Today, those values have been incorporated in the Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia. They are guarantying fundamental human rights and freedoms, equality and coexistence of the Macedonian people with their compatriots - Albanians, Turks, Roma, Serbs, Bosnians, Vlachs and all others that live in Macedonia. Equal right, as well as obligations, for preserving the common property, Gruevski said.At the beginning of the 20th century Macedonia aspired for freedom and creation of own state, today - the new generation of Macedonians is facing different challenges - preservation of the nation's identity and dignity and creation of a stable, functional, economically developed and prosperous Macedonia, integrated with NATO and the European Union, Gruevski said. 

Gruevski said that it was investing great efforts in order to complete necessary reforms, deal with corruption and organized crime, and boost the country's economic development. Development, better standard and economic growth are the Government's top priorities, Gruevski said. Many measures have been introduced in this respect, which are expected to attract foreign investors, open new jobs and improve the living standard of the citizens of Macedonia, the Prime Minister said. The Government has been also working on educational reforms - the pillar of a society and key to success, as well as on health care reform, which should put an end to problems the citizens have been facing in this sector so far. The agricultural sector is our pride. We consider the farmer as our protector, Gruevski said, adding that reforms in this sector are aimed at providing decent life to all of those engaged with such activity. 

Speaking about judicial reforms, Gruevski said the process had been burdened with numerous problems and obstructions. However, he expressed satisfaction with the successful defense reforms, which, as he said, were being implemented in accordance with projected dynamics, enabling Macedonia to be part of peacekeeping operations abroad. The Government will also keep on implementing the Framework Agreement - an important pillar of Macedonia's multiethnic democracy.

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