Conference and bilateral meetings on: DOING BUSINESS WITH EU – HOW TO ACHIEVE A MORE INTENSIVE TRADE COOPERATION BETWEEN NORTH MACEDONIA AND POLAND
➢ News (25.09.2023, во 15:12:00)
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DOING BUSINESS WITH EU – HOW TO ACHIEVE A MORE INTENSIVE TRADE COOPERATION BETWEEN NORTH MACEDONIA AND POLANDClick for more

In the coming period, exports should be the main driver of economic growth in the country. To that end, the Economic Chamber is undertaking a series of activities under the Private Sector Regional Integration Support Activity (PSRISA), in partnership with USAID. As part of this project, an analysis of the export potentials of the Macedonian economy has been developed, clearly identifying the sectors in which N Macedonia and Poland have the greatest opportunities for intensifying cooperation.

“We have established an appropriate legal framework with the Republic of Poland, and all prerequisites for advancing trade and increasing investments have been met. However, we would like to see a changed picture in terms of the volume of trade compared to the previous trend of a continuous trade deficit on our side. We aim to make efforts to increase the export of Macedonian products to the Polish market and exchange and transfer experiences that could be beneficial for the further development of our relations," emphasized the Executive Director of the Economic Chamber of North Macedonia, Antoni Peshev, MBA, at today's opening of the conference for intensifying cooperation between the Republic of North Macedonia and Poland.

The structure of previous trade shows that products from the food sector, textiles, metals, and metallurgy sectors dominate. However, there is potential for future cooperation in other areas such as energy, waste and packaging, and the IT sector. Currently, Macedonian exports to Poland are highly concentrated. Only 15 products are exported with a value greater than $1 million, while the top 25 export products with the highest value account for 72% of the country's total exports to Poland.

According to empirical analyses, the untapped export potential of the Republic of North Macedonia to Poland is around $50 million in the next 5 years. This means that exports are expected to reach $140-150 million by 2027. Products with the highest export potential include electrical parts and equipment, automotive parts, metal products (steel sheets, metal pipes, and sections), clothing, primary agricultural products, food products, plastic products, medicines, and other pharmaceuticals, emphasized Peshev.

He stressed that the Chamber is undertaking a series of activities to provide more assistance, support, and preparation for businesses to conquer other markets, form new partnerships, and build their competitiveness. All of this aims to make exports the main engine of the country's economic growth in the upcoming period. Part of these activities is being implemented by the Economic Chamber of North Macedonia through the Private Sector Regional Integration Support Activity (PSRISA) in partnership with USAID. Within this framework, an Analysis of the Export Potentials of the Macedonian economy was developed, clearly identifying the sectors in which N Macedonia and Poland have the greatest potential for intensifying cooperation.

It is a distinct honor and pleasure to address the representatives of eminent companies from two friendly countries today. I hope this event will serve as a stepping stone to intensify and deepen cooperation," emphasized the Ambassador of the Republic of Poland to the RN Macedonia, H.E. Krzysztof Grzelczyk. He added that both countries have excellent cooperation in the tourism sector, where Polish tourists constitute the largest group among EU member states. However, he stressed that there is still ample room for collaboration in other sectors, and it is essential to work intensively to realize this potential.

"Poland has always been open to cooperation with North Macedonia and supports its path toward EU integration. For these reasons, I hope that companies will find ways to collaborate not only in increasing trade cooperation but also in knowledge exchange and joint market approaches," Ambassador Grzelczyk continued.

“USAID has built a strong partnership with North Macedonia over the past 30 years. Our assistance to the people of North Macedonia focuses on routing out corruption, supporting youth integration within the civil society as well as building a strong economy. We support the country’s aspirations for full Euro-Atlantic integration, and we are working hand in hand with local stakeholders to achieve this goal.   Strong economic ties with EU member states are the future of North Macedonia,” emphasized Ms. Jeri Dible, USAID Country Representative for North Macedonia.

She highlighted that the forum provides a unique platform for Polish and Macedonian businesses to share insights, explore opportunities, and address challenges. North Macedonia can draw extensive knowledge from the Polish experience. Poland’s diversified economy, regional economic integration, and pathways for steady growth present a model of self-reliance in an increasingly global marketplace. Western cooperation to advance fair economic practice will simultaneously promote entrepreneurship, investment, and the creation of new jobs. She encouraged companies to consider the importance of responsible and innovative trade practices. To consider not only the potential to expand their trade and collaboration but also the benefits for the communities and the environment. “Economic growth must be sustainable if we are to transfer prosperity to the generations that follow us. So, focus on long-term solutions rather than short-term gains,” pointed out Ms. Dible.

In his address to the attendees, Mariusz Żebrowski, Vice President of the Lower Silesian Chamber of Commerce, emphasized that this is the chamber's first such mission from the Lower Silesian region and expressed hope that more successful events with a larger number of participants from both sides will be organized in the future. He added that establishing business relations primarily depends on communication and networking among representatives of business communities, regardless of their size.

"In Poland, the majority of registered companies are small and medium-sized, but they are the most significant contributors to the economy, making the highest percentage contribution to the domestic GDP. Business is created by people, and the administration must support them. For these reasons, we, as chambers of commerce and business representatives, play a key role in achieving these goals," Żebrowski added.

"Exports are the main driver of economic development and are crucial for improving the country's international competitiveness. Furthermore, for smaller economies like ours, exports represent the most viable alternative for corporate growth. Considering the importance of exports in the Macedonian economy, connecting with neighboring and European economies becomes highly significant. Export activities themselves bring benefits such as increased sales, profits, turnover, and reduced market fluctuation risk, generating new knowledge and experience. This makes businesses more resilient to crises and market uncertainties," highlighted Gazmend Abdija, Director of the Agency for Foreign Investments and Export Promotion.

Following the official part of the conference, Krzysztof Przyłucki, Head of the Foreign Trade Department at the Polish Investment and Trade Agency (PAIH), delivered brief presentations on Polish companies. Subsequently, individual business meetings were held between representatives of Macedonian and Polish companies.

This event was organized under the Private Sector Regional Integration Support Activity (PSRISA), implemented in partnership with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the Economic Chamber of North Macedonia, and in collaboration with the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Skopje, the Polish Investment and Trade Agency (PAIH), the Agency for Foreign Investments and Export Promotion, and the Lower Silesian Chamber of Commerce.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sanja Nikolova M.A.
Expert at the organizational unit for member representation and networking