North Macedonia's parliament approves new coalition government

    WORLD  24 June 2024 - 10:21

    North Macedonia's Prime Minister Hristijan Mickoski has secured parliamentary approval for his new coalition government, marking a significant step as he takes on the challenges of advancing the country's bid to join the European Union and addressing domestic issues.

    In a vote, Mickoski's coalition garnered support from 77 lawmakers out of 120, with 22 voting against and 21 absent. Mickoski's centre-right VMRO-DPMNE party, which secured 43 per cent of the vote in May's elections, formed a coalition with an ethnic Albanian and a leftist party to reach a governing majority of 78 seats, Caliber.Az reports per foreign sources.

    Mickoski, a former engineering professor, faces the task of continuing North Macedonia's efforts to join the EU, initiated by his centre-left predecessors. However, his party's nationalist stance, particularly regarding agreements with neighbouring Bulgaria and Greece that could impact EU accession, presents a challenge. VMRO-DPMNE has expressed reservations about key agreements, including the deal with Greece that resolved the long-standing name dispute, opting to use the country's former name during parliamentary debates.

    Internationally, Mickoski's government's approach to these agreements is expected to be scrutinized, with concerns raised about potential implications for North Macedonia's EU aspirations. Despite these challenges, Mickoski has pledged to focus on strengthening the rule of law, tackling corruption, alleviating poverty, and boosting economic growth. His economic plans include tax cuts, pension increases, and targeting a 5 percent economic growth rate for the year, while aiming to keep inflation below 2.5 per cent.

    North Macedonia's journey towards EU membership, which began in 2022 alongside Albania, is anticipated to be lengthy and complex, with Mickoski navigating both international expectations and domestic demands during his tenure.

    Caliber.Az

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