Making Significant Progress
This region’s history dates back to antiquity, beginning with the kingdom of Paeonia, and since then it has fought quite a number of battles before the modern territory of Macedonia came under the Serbian rule following the Balkan Wars of 1912 and 1913. Making rapid and significant progress, since its peaceful secession in 1991 from Yugoslavia, Macedonia is today a member of the UN and of the Council of Europe, has applied for NATO membership, and has emerged strongly as an open, market-based economy.
By His Excellency Sasho Tashevski, Ambassador of the Republic of Macedonia in United Arab Emirates
Republic of Macedonia is an upper middle-income country that has made great strides in reforming its economy over the last decade. The vision of the Government of Republic of Macedonia is full membership in European Union and NATO, to ensure economic stability and improvement in the life of its citizens.
The Government is pro-business oriented, focusing on attracting FDI and making it easy for investors for doing business. In the “Doing Business Report 2018”, Republic of Macedonia is on 11th place in the world, and 5th in Europe for ease of doing business. “Business Insider” has ranked Republic of Macedonia No. 1 in the world for lowest taxation: average 7,4%. The corporate income tax is 10% flat rate. There are 13 free zones fully operating in the country, with tax holidays for 10 years (zero taxation for VAT, corporate & personal income tax, and zero custom duties for import of raw materials & machines). Areas of development include agriculture (fruits & vegetables), tourism, mining & minerals (especially marble), IT sector, textile industry, construction, healthcare, education, etc. When mentioning the marble, I am very proud to say that the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, is fully made of the white marble “Sivec”, coming from Republic of Macedonia.
Macedonia is cradle of culture with its old history of statehood for more than 3000 years, and its indepence since 1991. The biggest effort that Republic of Macedonia has made in the tourism industry is building new international airport in its capital, city of Skopje. In 2015, the airport was ranked No.1 airport in Europe for small airports, below 2 million passengers per year. The snowball effect is that world known hoteliers have opened their hotels all over the country, especially in city of Skopje and Ohrid, along the shore of Ohrid lake, where there is also an international airport fully reconstructed. Ohrid lake is the oldest lake in Europe and 2nd oldest in the world, over 4 million years old. The city as well is like museum with its unique architecture. Therefore, the lake and the city are both protected by UNESCO, as natural and cultural heritage to the world. Ohrid is the city with the 1st University in Europe, dating from 10th century AD, the University of Plaoshnik, where brothers Saint
Cyril and Method invented the cyrilic alphabet and spread it all over Eastern Europe and Russia. Nowdays, 314million people all over the world are using the cyrilic alphabet. The country is with picturesque valleys, mountains and lakes, tempered climate with four seasons and ~270 sunny days during the year, with excellent opportunities for alternative tourism like climbing, mount biking, skiing, speleology, scuba diving and paragliding. Great place to be discovered is Skopje, the capital of Macedonia with its old Bazaar, dating from 15th century AD, the town fortress of last roman Emperor Justinian from 6th century AD, who wrote the Roman Law, the memorial house of Saint Mother Theresa, canyon Matka with the cave Vrelo, the deepest underwater cave in the world. Macedonia is well known by the great hospitality of the people, as well as delicious cuisine. Republic of Macedonia and United Arab Emirates have established direct bilateral relations in 1996.
My Efforts towards Cordial Relations
Since 2014, we have established an Embassy in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates and I am proud to say that I was elected as an Ambassador to improve and strengthen the political and economic relations between our two friendly countries. To be more precise, we have signed several important Agreements, such as the Agreement for Avoiding of Double Taxation, Agreement for Cooperation in the Security, Agreement for Cooperation between Ministry of Health of Republic of Macedonia and DHCC (Dubai Health Care City), Agreement for Air Traffic Regulation between our two countries. There are several more agreements in the pipeline ready for signing. Concerning the trade and business relations, I am proud to say that various companies from United Arab Emirates have already invested in different sectors in the Republic of Macedonia, and they call themselves Happy Investors. United Arab Emirates were No.1 FDI investor in the country in 2016, according to official reports from National Bank of Macedonia. Besides improving political and economic relations, the Embassy is constantly working on strengthening cultural relations.
Republic of Macedonia and Republic of India have great bilateral relations. We have our Embassy in New Delhi, and so far we have several FDI investments from Republic of India into our country, in the mining and steel sector. Indian companies have invested in two mines for production of Zinc, Copper and Lead, as well as in Steel factory. Republic of India, as world’s fastest growing economy is an example of great sustainable growth. Republic of Macedonia can be an entry point for indian companies to enter the European market. We have established direct bilateral agreements with all European countries, including Ukraine and Turkey. This means no double taxation and no trade barriers and free access to a market of 650 million customers.