The National Convention on European Union in Republic of Macedonia is Project in Partnership between European Movement in Republic of Macedonia (EMRM), USAID and Slovak Association of Foreign Policy (SFPA) supported by Slovak-Aid. The original idea was conceptualized and realized by SFPA during the EU negotiation process of Slovak Republic. Specific interest of Slovak Republic to EU enlargement process gives possibility to many countries ( Serbia, Montenegro, Albania, Moldova and others) to profit this experience from SFPA.
The NCEU-MK started officially at 09.11.2017 godina with Plenary Session.
The Specific purpose of NCEU-MK is democratic institution-building through inclusive democratic process in the area of EU integration.
The process of integration of the Republic of Macedonia in the European Union enjoys undivided support at all levels of Macedonian society. In fact, the European integration is one of the few political processes equally supported by all ethnic and religious communities in the Republic of Macedonia, thus playing an additional vital role for strengthening the internal integration of the Macedonian society, fragmented along many (ethnic, religious, linguistic, ideological, etc.) lines of division. Though the Acquis Communitaire is almost implemented in the national legislation, the process of EU integration has been blocked because of the weakness of institutions and lack of political dialogue. The project will use the issue that is widely supported in all parts of the Macedonian society – EU integration – to create institutions and processes that will help the society to overcome these differences and function effectively and democratically.
Increase effectiveness of the policy-making process in the country by making it more inclusive
The undisputed consensus on the strategic level is not always reflected on the operational policy making level. The inclusiveness of the process of policy making is also an issue that leaves a lot of space for improvement. The policy making process is not inclusive to the civil society and stakeholders such as business community, syndicates, trade unions or other the civil society organizations. Therefore, the project will facilitate the political dialogue between the government and the opposition in the context of integration of the Republic of Macedonia in the European Union, and to provide an appropriate framework for more substantial inclusion of all other stakeholders in the process.
Support the EU integration process in Macedonia through useful know-how and experience sharing with Slovakia.
The integration of the Western Balkan countries, including Republic of Macedonia, to the EU has been one of the top priorities of Slovakia’s foreign policy. In order to achieve this goal, Slovakia is interested in sharing its experience from the integration process with any country in the region. Thanks to progress made in approaching the EU, the Republic of Macedonia can be considered as an appropriate recipient of this kind of assistance. The project will serve as a useful instrument to transfer know how from the integration process from Slovakia to Macedonia and in this way it will strengthen cooperation between the two countries. In addition, the joint implementation of the project by the Slovak and Macedonian partners will enhance partnership between the two non-governmental organizations. Last but not least, new networks of experts from both countries will be created.
The first National convention in Macedonia will focus on 4 sectors copying important chapters of the integration process as identified by the partners in Macedonia as the most crucial ones:
Working Group I: Agriculture and rural development (Chapter 11)
Working Group II: Social Policy and employment (Chapter 19)
Working Group III: Judiciary and fundamental rights (Chapter 23)
Working Group IV: Justice, freedom and security (Chapter 24)
The project envisages the creation of four Working Groups, the expert bodies (government institutions, NGOs, interest groups, regional authorities, business, academia, etc.) that will provide the recommendations to Macedonian governmental institutions on issues of key concern in the EU – Macedonia relations. Each WG will be chaired by two co-chairs and consisted of one internal expert and the regular members. Membership will be open to everybody. Representatives of the governmental structures (relevant ministries and agencies) will be offered to take the co-chairing of working groups. The second co-chair is elected by the WG members and represents NGO or business entity. The research and the background materials will be prepared by internal expert of WG. Each WG session will receive the background materials and research paper on the lessons learned in the specific topic discussed at the WG session from foreign (Slovak/EU) expert. In addition, each WG will be encouraged to invite one foreign (Slovak/EU) expert on the topic in focus to participate in two of its sessions. The majority of events will be held in Skopje, in order to foster the awareness about the critical importance of state-level institutions, recognized by the EU as counterparts in negotiations, for success of reforms and EU integration. At least 1/3 of the mentioned projected events will be held outside Skopje – in regional capitals and other regional centers.