In 2017, after the tense parliamentary elections and the violent actions at the National Assembly, it looked as if North Macedonia is on the brink of another conflict that would have pushed the country even farther from its dream of Euro-Atlantic integration. However, in the summer of the same year, the country signed the Agreement on Friendship, Good Neighborliness and Cooperation with Bulgaria and in 2018, the Final Agreement on Resolving the Name Disputes with Greece (the so-called Prespa Agreement).
The signing of the two agreements significantly helped the country to come out of diplomatic isolation and strengthen its international position and credibility. They were an expression of wise, courageous and responsible policy. This was leadership policy with a vision for the future and at the same time protection of key national interests. These agreements directly and permanently contributed to the peace, stability and the promotion of good neighborly relations in the region of Southeast Europe.
After the signing of these two agreements, the positive report of the European Commission for 2019 fully reaffirmed the country’s achievements and gave an unequivocal recommendation for opening of accession negotiations for EU membership. In March 2020 The European Council has adopted a decision to start accession negotiations for EU membership. These two agreements, in synergy with the successful implementation of the reform agenda, determined and strengthened the position of the country internationally and provided a key step in achieving its strategic goals.
Additionally, the signing of the Ohrid Framework Agreement in 2001 is another example of a courageous and responsible policy that changed the constitutional and legal framework of the country for issues related to its multiethnic character, thus enabling the development of a unique model of a multicultural society. Twenty years later, North Macedonia is an example of a functioning multiethnic democracy that, regardless of the seemingly complex political and institutional context, is developing and strengthening year by year.