Macedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic of [Country Flag of Macedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic of]
Transnational Issues
[Country map of Macedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic of]

Macedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic of


[Top of Page]

Location: Southeastern Europe, north of Greece

Geographic coordinates: 41 50 N, 22 00 E

Map references: Europe

total: 25,333 sq km
land: 24,856 sq km
water: 477 sq km

Area—comparative: slightly larger than Vermont

Land boundaries:
total: 748 km
border countries: Albania 151 km, Bulgaria 148 km, Greece 228 km, Serbia and Montenegro 221 km (all with Serbia)

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

Maritime claims: none (landlocked)

Climate: hot, dry summers and autumns and relatively cold winters with heavy snowfall

Terrain: mountainous territory covered with deep basins and valleys; there are three large lakes, each divided by a frontier line; country bisected by the Vardar River

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Vardar River 50 m
highest point: Korab 2,753 m

Natural resources: chromium, lead, zinc, manganese, tungsten, nickel, low-grade iron ore, asbestos, sulfur, timber

Land use:
arable land: 24%
permanent crops: 2%
permanent pastures: 25%
forests and woodland: 39%
other: 10% (1993 est.)

Irrigated land: 830 sq km (1993 est.)

Natural hazards: high seismic risks

Environment—current issues: air pollution from metallurgical plants

Environment—international agreements:
party to: Air Pollution, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography—note: landlocked; major transportation corridor from Western and Central Europe to Aegean Sea and Southern Europe to Western Europe


[Top of Page]

Population: 2,009,387 (July 1998 est.)
note: the Macedonian government census of July 1994 put the population at 1.94 million, but ethnic allocations were likely undercounted

Age structure:
0-14 years: 24% (male 244,636; female 230,103)
15-64 years: 67% (male 675,783; female 669,878)
65 years and over: 9% (male 85,030; female 103,957) (July 1998 est.)

Population growth rate: 0.68% (1998 est.)

Birth rate: 15.71 births/1,000 population (1998 est.)

Death rate: 8.08 deaths/1,000 population (1998 est.)

Net migration rate: -0.88 migrant(s)/1,000 population (1998 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.08 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.81 male(s)/female (1998 est.)

Infant mortality rate: 19.49 deaths/1,000 live births (1998 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 72.77 years
male: 70.67 years
female: 75.03 years (1998 est.)

Total fertility rate: 2.06 children born/woman (1998 est.)

noun: Macedonian(s)
adjective: Macedonian

Ethnic groups: Macedonian 65%, Albanian 22%, Turkish 4%, Serb 2%, Gypsies 3%, other 4%

Religions: Eastern Orthodox 67%, Muslim 30%, other 3%

Languages: Macedonian 70%, Albanian 21%, Turkish 3%, Serbo-Croatian 3%, other 3%

Literacy: NA


[Top of Page]

Country name:
conventional long form: The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia
conventional short form: none
local long form: Republika Makedonija
local short form: Makedonija
abbreviation: F.Y.R.O.M.

Data code: MK

Government type: emerging democracy

National capital: Skopje

Administrative divisions: 34 counties (opstinas, singular—opstina) Berovo, Bitola, Brod, Debar, Delcevo, Gevgelija, Gostivar, Kavadarci, Kicevo, Kocani, Kratovo, Kriva Palanka, Krusevo, Kumanovo, Murgasevo, Negotino, Ohrid, Prilep, Probistip, Radovis, Resen, Skopje-Centar, Skopje-Cair, Skopje-Karpos, Skopje-Kisela Voda, Skopje-Gazi Baba, Stip, Struga, Strumica, Sveti Nikole, Tetovo, Titov Veles, Valandovo, Vinica
note: in September 1996, the Macedonian Parliament passed legislation changing the territorial division of the country; names of the 123 new municipalities are not yet available

Independence: 17 September 1991 (from Yugoslavia)

National holiday: 8 September

Constitution: adopted 17 November 1991, effective 20 November 1991

Legal system: based on civil law system; judicial review of legislative acts

Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch:
chief of state: President Kiro GLIGOROV (since 27 January 1991)
head of government: Prime Minister Branko CRVENKOVSKI (since 4 September 1992)
cabinet: Council of Ministers elected by the majority vote of all the deputies in the Assembly; note—after the withdrawal of the Liberal Party (LP) from the ruling coalition in early 1996, the Council of Ministers was reorganized without LP participation
elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term; election last held 16 October 1994 (next to be held NA 1999)
election results: Kiro GLIGOROV elected president; percent of vote—Kiro GLIGOROV 78.4%

Legislative branch: unicameral Assembly or Sobranje (120 seats; members are elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms); note—Assembly to vote on new election laws in spring 1998
elections: last held 16 and 30 October 1994 (next to be held NA October/November 1998)
election results: percent of vote by party—NA; seats by party—SDSM 58, LDP 29, SP 8, PDP 10, DPA 4, independents 7, other 4; note—since October 1994 elections, some members of the Assembly have changed their party affiliation; the seating as of January 1997 is as follows: SDSM 61, LDP 27, SP 6, PDP 11, DPA 7, independents 3, other 5

Judicial branch: Constitutional Court, judges are elected by the Judicial Council; Judicial Court of the Republic, judges are elected by the Judicial Council

Political parties and leaders: Social-Democratic Alliance of Macedonia or SDSM (former Communist Party) [Branko CRVENKOVSKI, president]; Party for Democratic Prosperity or PDP [Abdurahman ALITI, president]; Liberal Democratic Party or LDP [Stojan ANDOV and Petar GOSEV]; Socialist Party of Macedonia or SP [Ljubislav IVANOV-ZINGO, president]; Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization—Democratic Party for Macedonian National Unity or VMRO-DPMNE [Ljubcho GEORGIEVSKI, president]; Democratic Party for Albanians or DPA [Arben XHAFERI, president]; Democratic Alternative or DA [Vasil Tupur KOVSKI, president]

Political pressure groups and leaders: Movement for All Macedonian Action or MAAK; Democratic Party of Serbs; Democratic Party of Turks; Party for Democratic Action (Slavic Muslim); Party for the Complete Emancipation of Romas or PCER [Faik ABDI]

International organization participation: CCC, CE, CEI, EAPC, EBRD, ECE, FAO, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, IDA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat (nonsignatory user), Interpol, IOC, ISO, ITU, PFP, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO (applicant)

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Ljubica Z. ACEVSKA
chancery: 3050 K Street, NW, Suite 210, Washington, DC 20007
telephone: [1] (202) 337 3063
consulate(s) general: New York

Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Christopher Robert HILL (18 July 1996)
embassy: Bul. Ilindenska bb, 9100 Skopje
mailing address: American Embassy Skopje, Department of State, Washington, DC 20521-7120 (pouch)
telephone: [389] (91) 116-180
FAX: [389] (91) 117-103

Flag description: a rising yellow sun with 8 rays extending to the edges of the red field


[Top of Page]

Economy—overview: The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, although the poorest republic in the former Yugoslav federation, can meet basic food and energy needs through its own agricultural and coal resources. The economy slowly rebounded in 1996-97 after years of recession. Continued recovery depends on Macedonia's ability to attract investment, to redevelop trade ties with Greece and Serbia and Montenegro, and to maintain its commitment to economic liberalization. The economy depends on outside sources for all of its oil and gas and most of its modern machinery and parts. An important supplement of GDP is the remittances from thousands of Macedonians working in Germany and other West European nations.

GDP: purchasing power parity—$2 billion (1997 est.)

GDP—real growth rate: 1.5% (1997 est.)

GDP—per capita: purchasing power parity—$960 (1997 est.)

GDP—composition by sector:
agriculture: 20.4%
industry: 38.6%
services: 41% (1995 est.)

Inflation rate—consumer price index: 3.5% (1997 est.)

Labor force:
total: 591,773 (June 1994)
by occupation: manufacturing and mining 40% (1992)

Unemployment rate: 30% (1997 est.); note—many employed workers are, in fact, furloughees

revenues: $1.06 billion
expenditures: $1 billion, including capital expenditures of $107 million (1996 est.)

Industries: coal, metallic chromium, lead, zinc, ferronickel, textiles, wood products, tobacco

Industrial production growth rate: 3.4% (1997 est.)

Electricity—capacity: 1.366 million kW (1995)

Electricity—production: 5.4 billion kWh (1995)

Electricity—consumption per capita: 2,584 kWh (1995)

Agriculture—products: rice, tobacco, wheat, corn, millet, cotton, sesame, mulberry leaves, citrus, vegetables; beef, pork, poultry, mutton

total value: $1.2 billion (f.o.b., 1996)
commodities: food, beverage, tobacco 17.0%, machinery and transport equipment 13.3%, other manufactured goods 58%
partners: Bulgaria, other former Yugoslav republics, Germany, Italy

total value: $1.6 billion (c.i.f., 1996)
commodities: machinery and equipment 19%, chemicals 14%, fuels 12%
partners: other former Yugoslav republics, Germany, Bulgaria, Italy, Austria

Debt—external: $1.06 billion (June 1997)

Economic aid:
recipient: ODA, $NA
note: US, $10 million (for humanitarian and technical assistance); in December 1995, the EU agreed to provide a credit line of ECU 21.7 million for investment projects

Currency: 1 Macedonian denar (MKD) = 100 deni

Exchange rates: denar per US$1—31 (July 1997), 40.5 (September 1996), 38.8 (December 1995), 39 (November 1994), 865 (October 1992)

Fiscal year: calendar year


[Top of Page]

Telephones: 125,000

Telephone system:
domestic: NA
international: NA

Radio broadcast stations: AM 6, FM 2, shortwave 0

Radios: 369,000 (1992 est.)

Television broadcast stations: 5 (relays 2)

Televisions: 327,011 (1992 est.)


[Top of Page]

total: 922 km
standard gauge: 922 km 1.435-m gauge (232 km electrified) (1997)

total: 10,591 km
paved: 5,500 km (including 133 km of expressways)
unpaved: 5,091 km (1997 est.)

Waterways: none, lake transport only

Pipelines: 0 km

Ports and harbors: none

Airports: 16 (1997 est.)

Airports—with paved runways:
total: 10
2,438 to 3,047 m: 2
under 914 m: 8 (1997 est.)

Airports—with unpaved runways:
total: 6
914 to 1,523 m: 2
under 914 m: 4 (1997 est.)


[Top of Page]

Military branches: Army, Navy, Air and Air Defense Forces, Police Force

Military manpower—military age: 19 years of age

Military manpower—availability:
males age 15-49: 536,321 (1998 est.)

Military manpower—fit for military service:
males: 432,190 (1998 est.)

Military manpower—reaching military age annually:
males: 16,857 (1998 est.)

Military expenditures—dollar figure: 7 billion denars (1993 est.); note—conversion of defense expenditures into US dollars using the current exchange rate could produce misleading results

Military expenditures—percent of GDP: NA%

Transnational Issues

[Top of Page]

Disputes—international: dispute with Greece over name; in September 1995, Skopje and Athens signed an interim accord resolving their dispute over symbols and certain constitutional provisions; Athens also lifted its economic embargo on The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia; 20 bilateral agreements remain unsigned in a dispute over Bulgarian nonrecognition of Macedonian as a language distinct from Bulgarian; the border commission formed by The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Serbia and Montenegro in April 1996 to resolve differences in delineation of their mutual border has made no progress so far; Albanians in Macedonia claim discrimination in education, access to public-sector jobs and representation in government; Party for Democratic Action (DPA) calls for a rewrite of the constitution to declare ethnic Albanians a national group and allow for regional autonomy

Illicit drugs: transshipment point for Southwest Asian heroin and hashish; minor transit point for South American cocaine