INITIATIVE FOR ORGANIZING AN EVENT FOR BUSINESS NETWORKING in order to connect foreign investors with domestic companies from the automotive industry that have a potential to become their local suppliers
 The Automotive Industry Association within the Foreign Investors Council within the Economic Chamber of Macedonia held a regular session in the premises of "Van Hool" at which the modalities for strengthening the cooperation between the foreign investors in the free zones and the domestic companies for them to be more efficiently integrated in the local supply chain.


Avram Stojchevski, chairmen of the Automotive Industry Association, used the occasion of the press conference to point out that having in mind that the greater part of foreign investors in the country are working in the field of the automotive industry, it is logical for the greatest part of Macedonian companies- potential suppliers- to come from this industry.

Of a total number of about 50 Macedonian companies that produce or have a capacity to produce different parts or to offer services necessary for direct production in the automotive industry, only a limited number of them can say that they have already achieved that.

- Foreign investors always pay great attention to the localization of the suppliers in order to optimize the expenses and the delivery time. Local suppliers are more flexible, can adjust faster to the demands of foreign partners and to use the vicinity and the reduced transport costs to be more competitive- said the president of the Association, Mr. Stojchevski.

- Foreign investments in the field of the automotive industry are relatively young industry in our country and we expect the effects of their work to intensify regarding the promotion of the cooperation with the companies in Macedonia. We know that there is a potential in this- said Stojchevski.

In that direction and as a continuation of the activities undertaken by the Automotive Industry Association an initiative emerged to hold bilateral business meetings between foreign companies and local suppliers from the automotive industry and associate sectors. The first step is to establish communication and to hear the needs and demands of foreign companies and to present the possibilities and the offers of the domestic companies.

At the same time, at today's session, the companies- members of the Association were introduced to the Pilot-program for development of the supply chain within the Program for competitive industry and innovations in Macedonia designed by the World Bank upon the request of  the Government of the Republic of Macedonia in order to stimulate the relations between small and medium companies and big foreign companies that work in the Republic of Macedonia.

 The representative of the Direction for the technology and industrial zones presented the consolidated Law on technology industrial development zones via which easer access is provided to domestic companies and the business procedures cooperation with foreign companies in the zones are simplified. The investing possibility in the TID- zones is already available for domestic companies and 2 Macedonian companies have already invested in the free zones. The representative of the State Environmental Inspectorate had an address on hazardous waste management.

 According the agenda, the media had the possibility to visit the factory production units of "Van Hool Macedonia" and to get to know the conditions for work that include all European standards for quality and for occupational health and safety.

The Association currently has about 20 active members such as foreign investors from the free economic zones and domestic companies that have the role of potential suppliers. State institutions have the role of external partners- observers that are directly related to attracting foreign investments and these institutions are: the Agency for foreign investments and promotion of export, Customs Administration, the academic community presented by the Faculty of technology in Skopje, several secondary vocational schools and foreign donors in the country such as the World Bank and the International Financial Corporation-IFC.

Vlatko Stojanovski