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Saturday, March 24, 2018, 

Ivanov: EU to give Macedonia accession talks start date

Ivanov: EU to give Macedonia accession talks start date

Brussels, 26 October 2017 (MIA) - I expect the European Union to demonstrate decisiveness and give Macedonia a date for start of accession negotiations, said President Gjorge Ivanov in the address at Thursday's opening of the 19th Annual Session of the Homeland & Global Security Forum within the Crans Montana Forum, MIA reports from Brussels.

Ivanov said all European standards and principles were being adopted in parallel with the membership talks.

"The country becomes more European and gets closer to the European standards with each closed chapter. The Union must understand that the enlargement process is not a purely technical, but primarily a political and strategic issue. The EU must dedicate more attention to Europe's east and southeast. Enlargement must continue, investment are required in the infrastructure and energy networking, because solidarity is the only way to build a region and continent of security, peace and well-being", said President Ivanov.

According to him, delay in the enlargement process would make the situation more complex, whereas the integration status quo in combination with the economic crisis and security challenges have made the Balkans and Macedonia more vulnerable to outside destabilization factors.

"The migrant crisis has shown the necessity for cooperation in the field of regional security, in order to resist global security threats. A good example of this cooperation is the assistance we received from several European countries in the prevention of the illegal migration. This is model that the Union should follow. In addition, the financial crisis has demonstrated the need for networking of the regional market in order to be competitive on the global market. Initiative 16+1 can provide support in this regard, enabling countries of Central, East and Southeast Europe to link through infrastructure, thus completing the European project on free flow of people, commodities, services and capital. However, all of this is incomplete without the third element - Union enlargement", stressed Ivanov.

Later in the day, President is scheduled to meet with Belgian Foreign Minister Didier Reynders. ik/11:41


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