Council adopts assistance measure in support of the army of North Macedonia

The Council adopted an assistance measure under the European Peace Facility (EPF) worth €9 million to the benefit of the army of North Macedonia (ARMK).

This decision is part of the EU’s efforts to further strengthen its security engagement with its Western Balkan partners.

With this assistance measure, we will strengthen the Army of North Macedonia, who are actively contributing to EU missions and operations. This is the first bilateral package for North Macedonia under the EPF, the second for the country as part of the Balkan Medical Task Force, and the fourth package for the Western Balkans, clearly underlining the EU’s strong engagement for the region’s security and stability. We are committed to further strengthening our common work on security and defence with future member states in the Western Balkans.

Josep Borrell, High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security policy

The EPF assistance measure will strengthen the capacities of the ARMK, notably by enhancing and upgrading the equipment of its light infantry battalion group. Through the provision of appropriate equipment, the assistance measure will help increase the ARMK’s capacity to maintain and enhance operating standards to participate in EU military CSDP missions. The proposed support will include logistics, medical equipment, communication and information systems, intelligence capacities, chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN), engineering and training equipment.

The assistance was requested by the Minister for Foreign Affairs of North Macedonia in December 2022.

This is the fourth measure aimed at bolstering security and defence in the Western Balkans, after the 2021 and 2022 assistance measures benefitting Bosnia and Herzegovina and the 2022 measure benefiting the Balkan Medical Task Force, to which North Macedonia is participating and framework nation.