Washington DC, 31 May 2022 (TDI): Foreign Affairs Minister of The Republic of North Macedonia, Bujar Osmani headed to Washington DC to lead the North Macedonia delegation for the Strategic Dialogue with the United States of America.

Meetings with high-level government officials as well as think tanks are on the agenda. Minister Osmani highlighted this meeting as an opportunity to strengthen their relations further and explore new avenues for future collaboration.

Bilateral relations

Both countries have a cooperative relationship, that is, in a broad range of political, economic, cultural, military, and social issues.

Above all, the two countries have had good bilateral relations during the time that North Macedonia gained its independence from Yugoslavia in 1991.

The US acknowledged North Macedonia formally in 1994, as a result, both countries established full diplomatic relations in 1995.

The US firmly supports North Macedonia in various areas, namely, its aspirations to be integrated into Euro-Atlantic institutions.

Hence, the US is committed to assisting North Macedonia in embracing inclusive democracy and citizen-responsive governance.

Also, the US is committed to supporting the country in fighting corruption and discrimination, strengthening rule of law, and building upon achievements as a North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Ally and partner among other areas.

Most importantly, the US and its European allies took action in mediating an end to the 2001 civil conflict in North Macedonia which had resulted from ethnic tensions.

They supported the government and major parties’ successful efforts to produce a peaceful, political solution to the crisis through the Ohrid Framework Agreement.

The signing of the Prespa Agreement with Greece in June 2018  and the previous Treaty on Good Neighborly relations with Bulgaria signed in August 2017, made way for North Macedonia to be part of NATO as the Alliance’s 30th Ally in 2020.

Assistance, Economic relations, and International Organizations membership

The US Government’s assistance concentrates on strengthening North Macedonia’s resilience as a committed strategic partner.

For instance, the US supports North Macedonia’s continued development on the way to full integration within the Euro-Atlantic community. Also, the Government of North Macedonia’s efforts to sustain democratic and economic reforms to build prosperity and stability.

Economically, in 2021, the entire trade between North Macedonia and the US was at $306 million, that is, a 6.9 %  increase over 2020.

US electrical equipment and machinery have been specifically attractive to importers in North Macedonia whilst main exports to the US include tobacco, apparel, iron, and steel.

The two countries belong to similar numerous international organizations. Specifically, the United Nations, Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), Adriatic Charter, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, the World Trade Organization, and NATO.

Furthermore, the European Council supported the decision to allow EU accession negotiations with North Macedonia on March 26, 2020. Still, Bulgaria is blocking the beginning of North Macedonia’s accession talks.

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