Official visit of Mr. Mladen Ivanic, Chairman of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina
Wednesday, 19 April 2017 12:41   

MKD-BIHDear media representatives,

Distinguished Chairman of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Mr. Ivanic,

Let me wish you a warm welcome in the Republic of Macedonia and express satisfaction with the realization of your visit.

Today, my friend and colleague, Mr. Ivanic, and I had really excellent and comprehensive meeting at which we discussed all issues of common interest for Macedonia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.

I would like to express my satisfaction with the development of relations and cooperation between our two countries so far, which are characterized by traditionally strong friendship, identical views on the development of international and regional cooperation, with common strategic objectives - peace and stability in the region, membership in the European and Euro-Atlantic structures.

The Republic of Macedonia, continuously and in all possible ways, openly and clearly supports the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

We welcome the country's progress in the EU integration process and expect it will soon submit answers to the Questionnaire, after which the European Union will give a positive opinion for the membership of Bosnia and Herzegovina in the European Union.

Mr. Ivanic and I exchanged views on the situation in the region.

We concluded that the EU integration of the countries in the region is essential for the stability of the entire region, its development and prosperity. The only response to the situation in the region is progress in the process of integration into the European Union.

Therefore, we concurred that a priority is the opening of accession negotiations, especially Chapters 23 and 24 for all countries of the region which are not members of the European Union, because those areas are weak areas for our countries: judiciary, fundamental rights, justice, freedom and security. We think that if there is power, capacity in Brussels to open these two chapters for all countries in the region, the situation in the region would have been different.
At the meeting with Mr. Ivanic we exchanged information and views on the current situation in our countries.

I informed Mr. Ivanic on the developments in the country after the early parliamentary elections of 11 December 2016, and the legal and political obstacle in terms of granting the mandate to form the Government of the Republic of Macedonia.

In terms of the post-election platform as a political obstacle, I repeated the position that it undermines the Constitution and the Ohrid Framework Agreement and the Republic of Macedonia is put into a position of subordination and dependence on another country. This endangers the sovereignty, independence and unity of the state.

We both agreed that such interference in the internal affairs of the Republic of Macedonia is an incentive for realization of the great nationalist ideas and that what is most needed now is to reduce tensions in the region and change the rhetoric that we hear lately in the overall region.

With my interlocutor we exchanged views on the economic cooperation because Bosnia and Herzegovina is on the list of the 20th largest economic partners of the Republic of Macedonia. For now, the trade between the two countries is about USD 155 million. The small surplus is constantly on the Macedonian side, but it is the motive to work more on the economic cooperation and it will be the basis for the business forum that will be held tomorrow.

Thank you.