MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING WITH USA
Vice Prime Minister responsible for European affairs Vasko Naumovski and US Ambassador to Macedonia Philip Reeker signed last night a memorandum of understanding between the Macedonian and US government.
The memo, envisaging assistance for trainings and related activities, is part of the Declaration for Strategic Partnership signed by Macedonia and the United States back in May 2008. It encompasses trainings of civil servants in various fields in an attempt to raise the level of professionalism, but also to secure their posts in service of the citizens despite changes in government structures.
Vice PM Naumovski took the occasion to note that the memorandum was a crown of long negotiations and preparations by both sides. Trainings for civil servants stemming from it will be realised between Macedonian and US institutions. Investments in human resources, he said, are one of the four priority areas for cooperation with the US government and trainings for civil servants are an extremely important support for Macedonia.
- I am convinced the transformation of state services into a modern and effective system serving the citizens is the key for country's future progress. Administration reform is one of the most crucial priorities of Macedonia in its integration process towards EU, stated Vice PM Naumovski after signing the memorandum.
According to Ambassador Reeker, the memo will protect US investments by guaranteeing that trained civil servants will remain on their posts and will assist Macedonia to make utmost efforts using the power of professionally trained public administration. He noted that US since the independence of Macedonia had invested one billion dollars in various spheres aimed at country's development.
- Trainings in education, police, judiciary and defense will hugely benefit Macedonia. Trained individuals will be able to apply new and better systems at their work places, thus contributing to the advancement of Government's operations, stated Reeker.
The US Ambassador said the signed declaration remains a priority for the United States and as a result additional programs and funds for projects have been provided.
Asked by reporters why US companies and investments were scarce in Macedonia, in addition to Johnson Controls, and to comment the announced opening of new Chinese factory, Reeker stated the governments of US and Macedonia were working jointly to create adequate conditions to attract foreign investors and to make the country more competitive.
- The American government is not controlling the companies in the country and cannot tell them where to invest. We want to encourage US companies to come here and to invest. However, I believe that with these reforms, which need to be implemented in order to boost the competitiveness, we will be able to convince US companies to invest in Macedonia. It is important investments to come from all around the world and we welcome every investment initiative in Macedonia, stated US Ambassador Reeker.