SKOPJE, North Macedonia - On Jan. 28, 2020 a round table titled “The path
towards EU and NATO: Perspectives and Challenges” organized by the Council of
Ambassadors and under the auspices of the President of the Republic of North
Macedonia, Stevo Pendarovski, was held.
Among the Ambassadors accredited to North Macedonia Chief
NATO Liaison Office Skopje, Slovenian Colonel Zoran Jankovič was an honor guest
and a key note speaker at the round table.
In his speech, Colonel Jankovič stressed the major
benefit from NATO membership to be the participation in the decision making
process which is a powerful tool as all decisions are consensus based. He also
mentioned that 28 NATO member nations have ratified the Protocol and now Spain
remains to conclude the process which has commenced in their Parliament.
Colonel Jankovič also referred to the reforms process and
said “Perception that only MOD and Armed Forces acceded to NATO is wrong.
Comprehensive Governmental approach is needed but sometimes hard to achieve.
Decision making process always starts and ends in the Capitals, that’s why link
with your delegations and representatives in NATO entities is extremely
important, as well as information exchange and protection of classified
information. Beside MOD and Armed forces representatives, also experts from
MOFA, crisis management experts and experts from all other ministries and
different agencies are needed for successful work. Business as usual approach
is not permitted, and changes in mindset, processes and structures are
expected. You have in military terms only single set of forces to fulfill all
Colonel Jankovič continued with “A lot has already been
achieved, but the positive momentum must be maintained, because despite the
broad support there is still active internal and external opposition to the
country’s NATO membership. Therefore it is vitally important for all parties to
put their division aside and to engage constructively in the further
implementation of reforms”. He continued that it is now certain that the
country will soon become full-fledged member of the Alliance.
While reiterating that NATO is a transatlantic Alliance
and it will remain as such, the bond between EU and NATO is inseparable and as
the country is aspiring to join EU obligations for North Macedonia will derive
“Recognizing the multitude and complexity of challenges
in the field of security and defence NATO and EU also enhanced cooperation. The
Joi nt Declaration is a solid foundation for intensifying NATO – EU cooperation.
Significant progress has been achieved over the past years, which was recently
reflected in the fourth NATO – EU progress report”, said Colonel Jankovič
He concluded by expressing his gratitude to President
Pendarovski and Ambassador Zhbogar for the opportunity to speak alongside them
and said that NATO–EU cooperation is unprecedented and it shall continue to be
enhanced at all levels. He stressed at the end that the contribution of today’s
forum to achieving the objectives will be significant.