Interviews and Speeches

Your Excellency Ambassador Shcherbak,

Dear Excellencies,

Distinguished guests,

Ladies and gentlemen, friends,

 

It is my honour to address you on this solemn occasion marking 20 years since the establishment of diplomatic relations between the Republic of Macedonia and the Russian Federation.

31 January 1994 is a date that is permanently engraved in the history of relations between the two countries. On this day, 20 years ago, when Macedonia went through a very complex period, Russia stepped forward with unstinting support, recognizing the Republic of Macedonia under its constitutional name. Since then, we work together on consolidation, development, and improvement of our relations and cooperation.

The best example of the very friendly relations, and still fresh in my mind, is the visit that I made last year to Moscow. In a positive atmosphere and hospitality, I was met by my Russian counterpart, Foreign Minister Lavrov. During our talks, in an open and honest way, together we confirmed that in the past 20 years, the Republic of Macedonia and Russia have built a solid foundation of partnership, friendship, and respect.

The Macedonian-Russian dialogue is continuous and is characterized by a high degree of understanding of foreign policy interests, guidelines, and ways to achieve them.

With joint efforts of both countries, we have continually expanded the horizons of cooperation. We have signed more than 30 agreements in all areas. At the same time, we had dynamic exchanges in cultural, academic and media spheres that contributed to the stronger mutual coming together.

In this context, I would mention the Days of Macedonian Culture that were successfully organized in Moscow and St. Petersburg, and the Days of Russian Culture held in our country. Last year we also signed the agreement on opening of cultural information centres, which gave new impetus to the promotion of both cultures that have deep historical ties.

In the economic context, we undertook major diplomatic activity, and I can freely say that cooperation in recent years has increased and diversified into different sectors, and it corresponds to the potential of the economies in both countries.

At the multilateral arena, we are building partnership relations. We have intensive cooperation on issues of international security, peace, and development. In this context, I would like to emphasize our cooperation within the United Nations, where Russia continually gives unconditional support to the constitutional name, and to the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the Republic of Macedonia.

Talking about the past, we should also think about what we can expect in the future.

The Republic of Macedonia is especially interested in further deepening of the good, stable, and friendly relations with the Russian Federation.

We have a common history; let us continue building a common future.

How? - By directing the cooperation towards strategic fields, in order to have more dynamic and structurally developed relations. Let me mention a few of them.

1. Economy. Economic diplomacy should be a tool that we will continue to use to attract Russian investments to Macedonia, and also to use it for greater promotion of Macedonian companies in Russia. We need to open markets in both countries for new products.

2. Tourism. It should be one of the priority areas of cooperation. It will not only enable greater promotion of the Republic of Macedonia among Russian citizens, but it will also help build closer ties between the business communities of both countries, and have cultural exchanges between nations.

3. In the area of multilateralism, we should maintain our partnership and continue the strong engagement in the programs and activities on the regional and international scene.

Distinguished guests,

In the spirit of the Macedonian-Russian cooperation, let me express my sincere gratitude to all those who work on a daily basis to strengthen the Macedonian-Russian dialogue.

Special gratitude goes to His Excellency, Ambassador Shcherbak, for his tireless efforts, not only to maintain the achievements, but also for the further improvement of mutual understanding and friendship between our two nations.