North Macedonia is a sovereign republic with multi-party parliamentary democracy. Authority in North Macedonia is based on the principle of a strict division of functions and responsibilities amongst the holders of legislative, executive, and judicial powers.
The President of the Republic of North Macedonia represents the Republic, and acts as Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces. The President is elected in general and direct elections, with a mandate of five years, and a maximum of two terms.
The Parliament (Sobranie), the legislative body, is the central and most important institution of state authority. The unicameral assembly is composed of 120 Members of Parliament with four-year mandates. Members are elected by popular vote from party lists, based on the percentage parties gain of the overall vote in each of six election districts, 20 seats each.
Executive authority rests with the Government, which is headed by the Prime Minister. The cabinet ministers are appointed by the Prime Minister Designate and approved by a majority vote in the National Assembly.
The North Macedonian legal system is based on civil law. The judiciary is comprised of basic and appellate courts, the Supreme Court, the Constitutional Court, and the Republican Judicial Council. Parliament appoints judges to serve on each of these courts. Membership to the European Union is of the highest strategic interest and priority for the Government, an objective shared by an overwhelming majority of citizens and all political parties. North Macedonia was the first country in South East Europe to sign a Stabilization and Association.
The accession of North Macedonia to the European Union (EU) has been on the current agenda for future enlargement of the EU since 2005, when it became a candidate for accession. North Macedonia submitted its membership application in 2004, thirteen years after its independence from Yugoslavia. It is one of five current EU candidate countries, together with Albania, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey. Accession talks started in March 2020.
North Macedonia is a member state of the (NATO). In 1995, the country joined the Partnership for Peace. It then began taking part in various NATO missions. At the 2008 Bucharest summit, Greece vetoed the country’s invitation to join; however, NATO member states agreed that the country would receive an invitation upon resolution of the North Macedonia naming dispute,Following an agreement in June 2018 to rename the country, representatives of NATO member states signed a protocol on the accession of North Macedonia to NATO on 6 February 2019. Over the next thirteen months, all of NATO’s 29 member states ratified the protocol. The accession protocol entered into force on 19 March 2020, allowing North Macedonia to deposit its instrument of accession and thereby become a member state of NATO on 27 March 2020.