03 December 2011

Macedonia presented as gateway for running Japanese businesses in Europe

Macedonia's investment opportunities have been presented for the first time before the Japanese business community in Osaka. Agriculture, food and wine production, manufacturing of car components and low income tax of 10% compared to high taxes in Japan are the most distinguished sectors, which Macedonia is known for, according to the director of the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO) for Osaka, Suzuki Yatsushi.
Investment opportunities offered by the Republic of Macedonia as a gateway for running businesses in Europe were presented at the second business forum organised by a government delegation led by PM Nikola Gruevski in cooperation with JETRO before representatives of several Japanese companies from the Osaka Prefecture.
Macedonia, the JETRO director said, in recent years has improved its business procedures and now it is ranked 22nd on the Doing Business list by the World Bank, whereas Japan is 20th on the same list.
PM Gruevski in his address underlined the profound respect of the strong collective working ethics and innovative brilliance of Japan, which has helped the hard-working and intelligent nation of Japan to establish the third biggest economy in the world, the government said in a press release.
"The Republic of Macedonia in the past several years for many has become one of the most pleasant surprises and one of the most positive economic examples in Europe," Gruevski noted.
According to the press release, he said that Macedonia's achievements had been recognised by the World Bank in its Doing Business report in which Macedonia was one of the most improved economies and business destinations, while in the 2012 report it was ranked 22nd, thus being higher on the list compared to 19 out of 27 EU member countries. Macedonia's rating is seen as stable and with positive perspectives in a report recently published by the credit rating agency Fitch in circumstances when the agency has lowered the ratings of over 10 European countries - which indicates that Fitch differentiates Macedonia and its policies compared to other countries. According to Gruevski, it came as a result of the Macedonian government's commitment to improve the business climate and working conditions for both domestic and foreign companies.
"Our goal is to attain economic growth, to develop the private sector and to open new jobs. Consequently, we work very hard to enable favourable conditions for companies to make profits and to achieve double benefit - for companies' management and the living standards of Macedonian citizens," Gruevski noted.
"The government is addressing one of its most important challenges to provide educational opportunities for its citizens that are required by modern societies. Macedonia has significantly increased its funding for education, expanded the access to higher education and boosted the use of computers and Internet in public schools and universities. These measures resulted in attracting many famous foreign companies in Macedonia," the PM added.
By implementing a series of structural and institutional reforms, PM Gruevski said that growth and efficiency were being supported as well as investments leading to dynamic market economy, which on its part provided flexibility for the structural changes needed for Macedonia to succeed on international markets and to adapt towards the challenges on the road to EU accession.
Vice PM and Minister of Finance Zoran Stavreski also delivered an address at the business forum presenting country's macroeconomic policy, reforms realized in the tax system, cadastre and central register as well as the investment opportunities in the sector of infrastructure and energy, reads the press release.
Business presentations were also delivered by Minister for Foreign Investments, Bill Pavleski, director of the Agency for Foreign Investments and Export Promotion, Visar Fida and director of the Directorate for Technological Industrial Development Zones, Viktor Mizo.
The Osaka business forum wraps up the visit of the government's delegation led by Premier Gruevski to Japan, where the PM met with Crown Prince Naruhito and his Japanese counterpart Yoshihiko Noda and other government officials. Two business forums in Tokyo and Osaka were organised during the visit as well.

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