A Macedonian government delegation, led by Prime Minister Zoran Zaev, headed to Budapest Sunday for the China-CEEC Summit of Heads of Government, which will take place in Hungary’s capital on the fifth anniversary of the formation of 16+1 cooperation, namely on November 27-28 under the chairmanship of President Viktor Orban.
The delegation includes Vice-Premier for Economic Affairs Koco Angjusev, Economy and Culture Ministers, Kresnik Bektesi and Robert Alagjozovski respectively, the State Secretary for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and national coordinator for the 16+1 cooperation group, Viktor Dimovski, and PM’s economic adviser Fatmir Besimi, the government said in a press release on Sunday.
On the event’s sidelines, Zaev is set to meet Chinese Prime Ministers Li Keqian and the Summit’s host Orban.
The idea of a cooperation platform between Central and Eastern European Countries (CEEC) and China -shortly referred to as 16+1 – was conceived after the first China–Central and Eastern European Countries Economic and Trade Forum that was held in 2011 in Budapest. Members of the format include China, 11 EU Member States: Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia; and 5 non-EU countries: Albania, Bosnia/Herzegovina, Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia.
Participating countries aim to invigorate and expand their cooperation on a wide range of areas, including but not limited to trade and investment, connectivity, finance, agriculture, science and technology, health, education, culture, people-to- people relations and local connections. In order to facilitate cooperation and exchange, various mechanisms and institutions have been established, gradually enhancing the 16+1 framework. Members seek to build a lasting partnership on the principles of openness, inclusiveness and mutual benefit.