Address by the President Ivanov, at the 16th Danube-European Conference on Geotechnical Engineering
Thursday, 07 June 2018 13:28   

konferencija_geoinzinjeri_01Dear attendees,

Ladies and gentlemen,

As President of the Republic of Macedonia, I am honored to be the patron of the XVI Danube-European Conference on Geotechnical Engineering. The fact that this important Conference is held in our country is an acknowledgment for the Republic of Macedonia, and therefore I congratulate its domestic and foreign organizers.

Next month will mark 55 years of the catastrophic Skopje earthquake. Exactly 5 seconds were enough to leave 150.000 people homeless, inflicting an immeasurable human and huge material loss. But our capital was restored thanks to the solidarity of the world and the professionalism of the geotechnical engineers. The geotechnical engineers were among the most responsible for putting the healthy foundations of the new and more resistant city.

Today, the Republic of Macedonia is connected with the European transport corridors. Roads, tunnels and bridges are being built, industrial capacities are being developed. The flow of people, goods, capital and services is branched and deepened. And all this has one goal, and that is a higher economic growth and development for the Macedonian citizens.

For the economic growth and development to be sustainable, we indeed need the expertise of the geotechnical engineers again.

Unfortunately, our region is not immune to disasters. All that we have inherited from previous generations, all that our generation is creating can disappear in just a few seconds. The dramatic climatic and meteorological changes that are in sight will increase the risk of hydrological hazards in Europe.

The complexity of nature still surpasses the narrow theoretical and scientific models of man. Despite the overall scientific and technical-technological development, we, as humanity, still cannot prevent all geotechnical hazards. But what we can do is to prevent them from becoming disasters. And we will achieve this by strengthening our institutions with the knowledge, capacities and resources necessary for the effective and efficient prevention, response and mitigation of the consequences in accordance with the Sendai Framework. Only you can help us, the geotechnical engineers, to build our infrastructure on solid and healthy foundations. With your help, we will be able to deliver a safer future to our descendants.

As patron of this important International Conference, I am sure that it will contribute to finding the necessary practical and applicable solutions to these geotechnical challenges. At the very end, I wish you a successful Conference and a nice and pleasant stay here in the Republic of Macedonia.

Thank you.