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March 25, 2023

September 8 – Republic of Macedonia celebrates independence

H.E. LJUPCO ARSOVSKI Ambassador of the Republic of Macedonia to Romania

The idea for independent state of Macedonia has been the dream of thousands and thousands of Macedonians who have pursued this dream for decades and centuries, struggling for this idea and dream, sacrificing their lives for the freedom and democracy of their homeland. Three important dates are written in their blood.

8 September 1991, along with 2 August 1903 – National Uprising against the five century Ottoman rule and 2 August 1944 –another battle won against the occupation forces in World War II, finally heralding free Macedonia, are dates that will forever remain written in the history of my country, because these dates symbol our nation’s struggle, striving, desire, dream, joy and sorrow.

On 8 September 1991, in the Referendum on the independence of the Republic of Macedonia, the citizens unequivocally expressed their desire for a free and a democratic state pursuing a decisively set goal- that after the admission to United Nations membership, their country fulfill all criteria required for fully-fledged membership of the European Union and NATO, this being of vital interest for the continued and lasting stability and welfare.

As of 1992 henceforth the newly established young independent state of the Republic of Macedonia has been pursuing a consistent foreign policy, promoting its national values and interests, at the bilateral and at the multilateral level. Good-neighborly relations and cooperation are my country’s continual commitments. The Government is investing great and persistent efforts in fulfilling the precisely defined benchmarks required for setting a date for start of negotiations for fully-fledged membership of the European Union, having fulfilled the criteria for liberalization of the EU visa regime for the Macedonian citizens.

In the last two years the reform activities undertaken in the context of our country’s bid for NATO membership have been finalized, i.e. the membership criteria have been fulfilled. This was established in the 2008 Bucharest NATO Summit Declaration and my country’s dedication and commitments towards this organization were recognized. Regretfully, the objection by our southern neighbor, which as of the day of proclamation of our dependence imposed the irrational demand that we change our Constitutional name, led to the adoption of a political decision, i.e. that a solution on the name difference is found as a condition for our NATO accession. The name difference talks are conducted under UN auspices. These days when Macedonia marks 18 years of its growth and maturity it is self-evident that the Macedonian national identity, language and culture are well established, recognized and widely accepted categories in the global setting, without any alternatives.

The Republic of Macedonia and Romania have always had friendly relations and cooperation in the cultural, scientific and other fields. Economic cooperation remains the lasting interest of both countries, featured with ample room for its further expansion and strengthening. It is encouraging that according to the statistical data, 2008 is better in trade and economic terms than 2007. Indeed we are moving forward!

There is a saying in the business circles that “he who has the data wins”. On this note, the Embassies of the two countries, in Skopje and in Bucharest, respectively, as well as the economic chambers, the honorary consuls , we all pursue intensive contacts and exchange economic information (about tenders, bids, economic interests, etc.) which has prompted and will continue to prompt the interest of the economic operators in both countries.

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