EU prepares first round of sanctions against Macedonia

The European Commission has reportedly prepared a first round of sanctions against Macedonia due to the unresolved political crisis in the country.


The crisis, which started in 2015 when wiretapped conversations incriminating top politicians were leaked, deepened in April when President Gjorge Ivanov issued a blanket pardon for 56 people, including top politicians. The decision was later revoked, but sparked mass protests in the country. So far, there has been little progress in resolving the crisis.

The Commission has decided to cut the EU pre-accession IPA 2 funds allocated for Macedonia for 2016 by over €27mn, broadcaster 24vesti reported, citing Commission spokesperson Maja Kocijancic. The decision was attributed to the fact that the Macedonian authorities have shown no willingness to fulfill their reform priorities or the 2015 Przino agreement. The poor management of projects for which the funds were intended was also cited.

The funds were aimed at the sectors of transport, justice and the management of public finance. The Commission sent the notice for the first wave of sanctions to the government on June 22, Alsat M said on July 1, adding that the Commission also plans to stop the disbursement of an additional €50mn allocated for Macedonia from IPA 2 funds.

BNE Intellinews
4 July 2016