Basic information about the territory
- System of governance and political tendencies in the country
- Foreign policy of the country
The system of governance and political tendencies in the country
The Republic of North Macedonia is a country on the Balkan Peninsula in Southeastern Europe and belongs to the group of countries from the so-called Western Balkans. North Macedonia is a sovereign, independent, democratic and social state. The referendum on independence and autonomy, or separation from the Yugoslav Federation, was held on September 8, 1991. The political system of North Macedonia as a parliamentary democracy is based on the principle of the division of power into three branches – legislative, executive and judicial. The Macedonian Parliament is unicameral with 120 deputies elected in direct parliamentary elections every four years. The assembly elects its own chairman, who occupies the second position in the political hierarchy of the state. The last parliamentary elections in North Macedonia were held on July 15, 2020. The SDSM (Social Democratic Union of Macedonia) political party won the election.
The president of the state is elected in direct elections and has a five-year mandate. President Stevo Pendarovski of the SDSM won the elections in May 2019. Check computerminus to learn more about Macedonia political system.
The long-term goal of North Macedonia since gaining independence in 1991 was and is integration into the Euro-Atlantic structures. In 2020, it succeeded in joining NATO and is now intensively striving for EU membership. The Czech Republic supports this for a long time, as it is of the opinion that the integration of the Balkan countries into the EU can increase the stability of the entire region. Integration into the EU will bring new investments, an increase in the standard of living and also the gradual abolition of borders. All this will weaken nationalistic tendencies and diminish the differences between individual countries, as well as calm the discrepancies within these countries themselves.
Foreign policy of the country
Euro-Atlantic and European integration is a key priority, as is ensuring that the Balkans remain a safe, stable and prosperous region. Therefore, North Macedonia supports bilateral and multilateral cooperation with all regional and international partners. Check relationshipsplus for Macedonia defense and foreign policy.
North Macedonia, along with other Western Balkan partners, was identified as a potential candidate for EU membership at the European Council summit in Thessaloniki in 2003. Its Stabilization and Association Agreement (the first in the region) has been in force since 2004. The country submitted application for EU membership in March 2004 and the Council decided in December 2005 to grant the status of a candidate country. The process was then significantly slowed down due to a dispute with Greece over Macedonia’s name. Finally, in February 2019, the country gave in to Greece and, with the so-called Prespa agreement, took a big step forward to get closer to the EU process, formally changing its name to the Republic of North Macedonia. Thanks to this, its acceptance into NATO was accelerated, which it also joined on March 27, 2020. The agreement with Greece also eased the accession process to the EU. France temporarily opposed him. In March 2020, the General Affairs Council of the EU decided to open accession negotiations with North Macedonia based on the decision of the European Council. An association agreement should follow, but it has not yet been approved due to the dispute with Bulgaria. Apart from disputes with Bulgaria over language and history and with Greece over the name Macedonia, the country also has a dispute with Serbia over the recognition of its own Orthodox Church. Relations with Albania are problematic due to the country’s significant Albanian minority (around 20%), which has called for secession and annexation to Albania several times in the past, with Albania supporting these tendencies.
North Macedonia has excellent friendly relations with the Czech Republic. The Czech Republic has long supported Macedonia’s integration into Euro-Atlantic structures, helping the country humanitarian and financial, and Czech police officers also serve together with their Macedonian colleagues on the southern border in Gevgelija, where they jointly fight against illegal migration.
According to the last official census in 2002, the total population of North Macedonia is 2,083,335. The average population density in the country was about 80.6 inhabitants / 1 km². The standard of living is rising, as according to the State Statistical Office, the number of deaths compared to the previous year also decreased by 2.9%. The average life expectancy is 7years (7years for women and 7years for men). The last census took place in 2002. Further attempts at a proper population census in 2011-2012 and 2021 ended in temporary failure. This is due to the dispute over the legal benefits that flow to the Albanian minority, if they make up at least 20% of the population. In the current situation, it is almost unthinkable that the census could be carried out. The ethnic majority is Macedonians (about 64%) and the main minority is Albanians (about 25%) among other ethnicities are mainly Roma, Bulgarians, Serbs, Turks and Greeks. The main religion is Orthodox Christianity, the other prominent religion is Islam. The main languages are Macedonian and Albanian.