Lazarov: The intergovernmental session in Sofia shows that things will no longer be put under the rug

Kiril Lazarov

The Macedonian-Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce is one of the participants that at the operational level will be involved in the process of restoring dialogue between the two countries.

"We are putting into full function all the actors of the Chamber in order to dimension the tasks in our scope of work and responsibilities that gravitate to the economy and investments," the president of the chamber, Kiril Lazarov, told "Local".

Hence, according to him, the intergovernmental session in Sofia is just the beginning of the road that shows that things will no longer be put under the rug and left only to declarative commitments. His expectations from the meeting are primarily of an economic nature and rely on rational and pragmatic foundations, through the prism of numbers and statistics.

"One thing has become clear throughout this period, and that is when we have close, stable and friendly relations with Bulgaria, the trade exchange, the tourist offer, the interest for investment, ie the economic relations as a whole are growing," Lazarov said.

Starting from the premise that if both countries have a real motive to cooperate economically with projects that have a regional character such as the project for Corridor 8, then we will very easily agree on topics that have an economic platform.

Among the projects that are a priority, Lazarov singles out several: "For me personally, a priority would be the design and rapid construction of a highway to Bulgaria. "The railway would be in five years from now, and the airline in two months from now."

Kiril Lazarov

How do you comment on the intergovernmental session of S.Macedonia and Bulgaria scheduled for tomorrow, which will be held in Sofia?

- The intergovernmental session is a result and confirmation of the efforts for the whole process to take place quickly and is a positive basis for restoring trust and dialogue. In light of resolving the disputed issues, I would say that this session is logical because after the meeting of Prime Ministers Petkov and Kovacevski came to the conclusion that they approach a substantive solution to the problem and will apply tactics to define the tasks of the working groups and realize the agreed dynamics. . This shows that things will no longer be put under the carpet and left only to declarative commitments and words, but that there is a sincere intention to concretize and realize all open issues, from economic to cultural platform.

Will the Macedonian-Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce have a representative in any of the four working groups?

- To have no dilemmas, the Government has formed working groups that will be represented by the institutions at the strategic level, and at the operational level, of course as a chamber we will be involved as part of the process. We have announcements for our active participation in order to dimension the tasks in our scope of work and responsibilities that gravitate to the economy and investments. We put in full function all the actors of the chamber in order to give an active contribution in the dialogue and the tasks.

What are the expectations of your chamber from the meeting? Do you feel that in the economy, as part of the focus on Macedonia-Bulgaria relations, positive effects will be seen quickly?

- Our expectations are based on rational and pragmatic bases and are based through the prism of numbers and statistics. One thing has become clear throughout this period, and that is when we have close, stable and friendly relations with Bulgaria, the trade exchange, the tourist offer, the interest for investment, ie the economic relations as a whole are growing. When there is an economy, there is closeness, there is a future and good feelings for each other. In the interview for your esteemed portal, sometime after Christmas, I told the statistics and when the blockade from Bulgaria was current and it can be seen that it is stagnating, stagnation in the economy creates antagonism between nations. Therefore, the focus between the relations between the two countries should be the economy, because only it has the power to create a positive effect in relations and only the economy will pave the way for easier finding of a political solution.

Kiril Lazarov

Do you share the optimism with the Minister of Economy, Bekteshi that in the field of economy, trade, transport and energy, the two sides will easily reconcile?

- That is real optimism, we do not have misunderstandings with Bulgaria in these segments, but we have a strong motive. Bulgaria has a strong motive to be economically dominant in our country, from their strategic point of view, but also to improve its own economic performance because according to their census, Bulgaria has lost over 900.000 young able-bodied people in the last 10 years, who understands economics knows how it will affect their GDP, and we have a strong motivation because we too are short of labor due to migration movements. If both countries have a real motive to cooperate economically with projects that have a regional character such as the project for Corridor 8, then we will very easily agree on the topics that have an economic platform.

What economic proposals should the Macedonian government make? Which projects do you think are a priority to solve?

- In the political part, the Government of Macedonia has the proposals, the red lines and the resolution in our Assembly for protection of the identity and linguistic peculiarities of our country. The proposals that are of economic nature have already been publicly presented and positioned by us as a chamber and we will repeat them on this occasion. Acceleration of the construction of Corridor 8 and its final completion, a project for highway connection in addition to the planned express connection from Kumanovo to the border crossing Deve Bair Bulgaria, the gas connection from Petrich to us through the interconnector. Bulgaria to speed up the connection from their side to the Klepalo crossing near Berovo, because it has been completed by us. And in the coming period, to define new investments as required by the new world economy, and that is investments in renewable energy sources, digitalization and IT industry, strategic agricultural projects, tourism, etc. For me personally, the design and rapid construction of a highway to Bulgaria would be a priority. The railway would be in 5 years from now, and the airline in two months from now. In the medium and long term, due to the accelerated economic and tourist exchange with Bulgaria, the construction of a beautiful European highway is needed. It will be a real connection between nations and businessmen.

Source: Lokalno.mk


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