British Defence Minister Ben Wallace at the meeting with Minister Shekerinska in London: Welcome to NATO!

Image-2Welcome to NATO – British Defence Minister Ben Wallace told Minister Shekerinska at the meeting in London.

The meeting takes place on the eve of the NATO – Alliance Leadership Summit where our country takes active part for the first time in a meeting of the Heads of States and Governments of the Member States.

“We appreciate the speedy completion of the process of ratification of the Accession Protocol for North Macedonia and the continued British support for our defence reform. Our focus will be on developing capabilities and capacities as a NATO member” Minister Shekerinska said, adding that compared to 2017, the defence budget has doubled and, in addition, over 20% of the 2020 budget has been allocated for equipping and modernizing the Army.

Minister Shekerinska said that with intensive advisory assistance from the United Kingdom, with several advisers in the field of defense reform and army transformation, North Macedonia has successfully implemented the NATO accession process.

British Defence Minister Wallace expressed his satisfaction with the fact that North Macedonia is only a step away from full membership of NATO. He said the United Kingdom strongly supports the Alliance open door policy and is prepared to provide all the necessary support in the development of NCOs and in training of the Light Infantry Battalion Group.

North Macedonia and the United Kingdom are true allies in the Alliance, friendly countries that have extremely developed and defensive cooperation, the two countries’ defence ministers agreed.

The intensive defence cooperation between the two countries encompasses a range of fields, including training of Army members at the UK most prestigious military schools, such as the Royal College in London, the Command Staff College in Shrivenham, Cranfield University, the Royal Military Academy and the Royal Military College where we consistently achieve great results.