EU government officials have reaffirmed their promise to allow six Balkan countries to one day join the bloc, including North Macedonia. A statement from the EU, referring to membership talks said ”The Council looks forward to the holding of the first intergovernmental conferences with the Republic of North Macedonia and with Albania as soon as possible.”
Up until recently, North Macedonia’s EU application had been stalled. Despite North Macedonia and Bulgaria now holding a good relationship, Bulgaria previously vetoed North Macedonia’s EU accession due to a historical disagreement over the country’s language; which they claim is a regional dialect of Bulgaria and should be recognised as this. Bulgaria’s decision to veto North Macedonia’s application in 2020, had hindered the country’s chances of joining the EU unless a resolution could be found.
However, after a politically rocky year, earlier this week Bulgarian Government appointed a new leader, Kiril Petkov who has made clear he will facilitate North Macedonia’s EU ambitions. Bulgaria’s new government must still lift its predecessor’s veto on North Macedonia, but it appears hopeful that this is now likely.
North Macedonia’s Citizenship by Investment programme has recently become an interesting option for those looking to gain a second passport in a European country which may later have the added benefit of being an EU member. The beauty of investing in a country which is not yet a member of the European Union, is that the programme is much lower in cost than a direct CBI option in a EU member country. Bulgaria for example will cost investors €1,024,000 for citizenship, whereas North Macedonia’s new programme is available from just $200,000, plus fees. To find out more about your options, please contact our specialist advisors for a free consultation.
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