Government at a Glance: Western Balkans 2020 - Republic of North Macedonia is regional frontrunner in terms of business-friendly environment

8th July 2020, Skopje – Republic of North Macedonia is regional frontrunner in terms of business-friendly environment and faces less fiscal risks compared to the other countries. These are the main points for our country in OECD’s Government at a Glance: Western Balkans 2020. The Report states that the country is regional leader in ensuring favorable business environment and outperforms OECD and OECD-EU averages.

In addition, it is indicated that Western Balkan countries engage much less frequently in dialogue with the private sector, only North Macedonia does so on a regular basis.

Minister of Finance, Nina Angelovska, took part Wednesday in online promotion of the Report, which OECD has prepared for the first time for the Western Balkan countries, incorporating more than 40 indicators referring to public administration, public finances, budget practices and procedures, public procurement, digital government, etc. Angelovska pointed out that the country faced the crisis with a sound financial system and stable government debt, lower by around 10 p.p. in relation to the average of the countries in the region, as well as that, despite the crisis, reform activities were being undertaken in line with the Public Financial Management Reform Program. She underlined that COVID-19 measures were designed cautiously, being targeted, with clear goals so as to provide the maximum effect with limited resources, taking consideration of the fiscal space.

- We have designed 3 extensive sets of anti-crisis measures which include tax relief, wage subsidies, vouchers and payment cards, supporting private consumption, as well as financial support for investments and competitiveness, etc. The measures play significant role in managing the crisis, and we have managed to maintain fiscal space should any need for additional interventions emerge, Angelovska said.

She also pointed out that, in the meantime, the Ministry of Finance has achieved significant progress in strengthening the transparency through new tools being published in the past period, as well as in preparing the new Budget Law and the technical specification of the integrated public financial management system which is to fully reform and modernize the public financial management processes. 

Minister of Information Society and Administration, Damjan Manchevski, Ministers of Finance of the countries covered by the Report, representatives of the Commission’s Directorate-General for Neighborhood and Enlargement Negotiations, as well as other high officials, also attended the event.