The North Macedonia Free Zones – DTIDZ hosted the inaugural European Free Zones Summit Skopje 2019 from May 2nd to the 4th, which was organized in cooperation with the World Free Zones Organization  (WFZO). The summit served to bring together high ranking officials and new collaborations amongst international free zones.

The summit united regional ministers with high-level representatives from free zones around the world in order to create a platform for sharing best practices, promoting cooperation, finding solutions to common challenges, and stimulating advancement for the future of free zones. The summit was opened by Aleksandar Mladenovski, CEO of North Macedonia Free Zones, Dr. Koco Angjusev, Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of North Macedonia, and Dr. Mohammed Al Zarooni, Chairman of the World FZO. The panel discussions that took place explored future challenges for free zones across continents, state aid, illicit trade, its effects on free zones, and a safe zone program, as well as the need to form large associations encompassing all types of free zones.

As part of its efforts to develop stronger global relations, the World FZO also signed agreements, appointing National Contact Points (NCP) in key countries. These NCP’s will coordinate research, knowledge sharing and information gathering at the local level. On May 3rd at the summit, agreements were signed between the World FZO and nine partners, marking the launch of a National Contact Point program.

The World Free Zones Organization, based in Dubai, UAE, is a global not-for-profit organization representing the interests of free zones around the globe. It currently has more than 550 members in over 120 countries. The Republic of North Macedonia, through the North Macedonia Free Zones – DTIDZ, is also a member. This significant event that took place for the very first time in Skopje emerged from their joint cooperation and shared interests.