24th January 2024, Skopje – Today, in the Government’s building of the Republic North Macedonia, Minister of Finance, Fatmir Besimi, together with Prime Minister, Dimitar Kovachevski met Xiaoqing Yu, World Bank Country Director for the Western Balkans, and Massimiliano Paolucci, Country Manager for Kosovo and North Macedonia.
The topic of discussion covered the New Country Partnership Framework with the World Bank, through which, Republic of North Macedonia will be made available US$ 695 million covering a four-year period, awarded and approved by the WB Board of Executive Directors.
At the meeting, impressions of WB Board of Executive Directors were conveyed, acknowledging the achievements and the proper policies of the Government of Republic of North Macedonia and the broader macromangement.
“The new Country Partnership Framework is continuation of this thirty-year long partnership, speaking in favor of the close cooperation with this international financial institution, being a result of our commitment and the actions we take in support of prosperous society, and development of both the processes and the economy. The new Partnership Framework comprises priorities designed together with the World Bank in many areas, aimed at easier access and better-quality public services, along with greater opportunities for creating jobs, highly valued positions in the private sector, = strengthened resilience to climate change, as well as reduced carbon emissions”, Prime Minister, Dimitar Kovachevski underlined at the meeting with World Bank representatives.
Prime Minister Kovachevski added that projects amounting to US$ 404 million have been supported by this partnership. This support will reach even US$ 1.1 billion under new Framework.
For the purpose of attaining the three goals, projects are prepared covering plenty of areas such as transport, municipal infrastructure, agriculture, digitalization, energy, health care, education, social services.
Minister of Finance, Fatmir Besimi, highlighted that the Country Partnership Framework provides for continuity in implementing the launched reforms aimed at human capital improvement, thereby foreseeing substantial funding of the reforms in the field of social welfare, education, and health care, contributing to social prosperity and accelerated economic growth.
In addition, Country Partnership Framework is focused on improving business environment and infrastructure, boosting competitiveness and modernizing agriculture sector, as well as energy transition.
At the meeting, the crucial matter of discussion also covered the extension of the first loans within the new Partnership, i.e. EUR 27.5 million for financing the second Social Services Improvement Project, providing for grater accessibility and improvement of the social services’ quality, also including the preschool services to vulnerable groups.
Loan in the amount of EUR 31 million is also granted for additional financing for the Road Upgrading and Development Project, aimed at improving transport connectivity along Corridor 8 between Skopje and Deve Bair.
In December, World Bank as our significant and strategic partner, also granted a loan as budget support amounting to US$ 100 million intended for supporting the policies, which rest upon three pillars, such as energy and financial sector climate transition, boosting public finances sustainability, and safeguarding public finance stability.
Country Partnership Framework, along with IMF’s acknowledgement of our sound and sustainable policies during the first review within the Precautionary and Liquidity Line, speaks in favor of maintaining proper course.