In the introductory part, the participants were addressed by Mr. Xhelal Bajrami, Minister of Labor and Social Policy. He welcomed the Committee’s work and stressed that its work is expected to initiate more discussion and information exchange in Macedonia and the EU. Mr. Vasko Naumovski, Deputy Prime Minister for European Affairs, in his address stressed the importance of the participation of civil society in policy-making and commitment of the Government to improve its inclusion in the future. His Excelency, Ambassador Erwan Fouere, Special Representative and Head of the Delegation and the two presidents, Ms. Vladimir Drbalova and Mr. Saso Klekovski also addressed the members of the JCC, observers and guests.
In the second part of the meeting, Minister Bajrami spoke about the current state of Macedonia on the path towards the EU. He emphasized the efforts of the Government to provide continuity in the reform processes, particularly in the implementation of the priorities of the Accession Partnership. He further gave a brief summary of key achievements in meeting the Copenhagen criteria. Finally, Minister Bajrami once again stressed that this Committee with its work should contribute to the promotion and development of social and civil dialogue as practiced in several European countries between the social partners. Ambassador Fouere, speaking on the same topic has highlighted the key areas where reforms must continue: the end of the name issue of the state, effective implementation of adopted laws that are of vital importance, the independence of the judiciary and the elimination of all forms of political influence, fighting corruption, achieve greater trust between ethnic communities, further implementation of the Ohrid Agreement, greater commitment to the inclusion of civil society organizations in decision-making process, strengthening of social dialogue through the presentation and further extensive consultation and debate to achieve the best solutions for anti-discrimination law.
Reports on economic and social rights were presented in the third, final part of the meeting.
The meeting was broadcasted live and clips of proceedings are available on MCIC’s website.
More information on the Macedonia-EU JCC and report from the the 1st meeting are available on the EESC website.