FORUM SA - North Macedonia - country outlook

FORUM SA’s business mission to North Macedonia

With the aim of developing the international character of its exhibitions, FORUM has dynamically started the mapping of specific foreign markets, with potential commercial interest for its exhibitors. First stop was North Macedonia.

The trip was organized by FORUM’s international department and is the first of a series of business missions, aimed at strengthening the international profile of the company’s exhibitions (FOOD EXPO, HORECA, XENIA, ARTOZA, FOOD TECH, GLOBAL PACK). The three-member mission, as part of the market outlook, made a series of important contacts with institutional bodies, but also with businessmen of the neighboring country. The main conclusion of their contacts is that North Macedonia is a virgin market, rapidly developing, with huge interest in investments in the Food, Hotels, Bakery and Manufacturing sectors.

FORUM SA meeting
Association of Bakery and Packaging

Institutional contacts

The circle of institutional contacts was opened with the Embassy of Greece in North Macedonia, specifically with Μs. Anastasia Zografou, First Counselor For Economic And Commercial Affairs at Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Hellenic Republic and the 1st counselor of Embassy and acting ambassador, Ms. Gina Andreadis. Both of them noted, among other things, that due to the rapid development that the country is experiencing at the moment, there is a need for technology in the agro-food sector, but also in the subsequent processing sectors. On the same wavelength, Mr. Aris Vlachos, president of the Hellenic Business Association and former president of Greek Investments in the Balkan countries, confirmed during his meeting with the Greek delegation, the positive climate that currently exists in Greece’s bilateral relations with the North Macedonia, which favors the further development of commercial contacts. The meeting with Mr. Bekim Emini CEO of INVEST NORTH MACEDONIA, the organization that is the official government body for promoting exports and attracting investments for the North Macedonian market, was also extremely important, as well as the contacts with Ms. Daniela Mihajlovska, of the Hoteliers’ Union and Mr. Antoni Peshev, Director of the Chamber of Commerce. Finally, the meetings with Mr Ilija Pavlickovski, president of the Union of Bakers, and Vasko Ristovski, representative of the Packaging Union of North Macedonia, were also pivotal, during which the need for packaging machinery in the agri-food sector was highlighted, with the aim of increasing of the production.

Business meetings

In addition to meetings with institutional bodies, the Greek mission also made a series of contacts with the heads of leading companies active in North Macedonia. Starting with Mr. Dimitris Vergitsis, CEO of CANDIA LLC, who channels Greek products to the local market through his delicatessen store based in North Macedonia, while he is also the representative for well-known Greek companies such as ABEA, Cretan Mills, Meli Kalokiri and BIOXYM. This was followed by a meeting with Mr. Vasilios Podas, CEO of PLATAMONAS FISH, a Greek fresh fish and seafood import company, with headquarters in Greece and a branch in North Macedonia. Also, they met with Mr. Trajce Petrovski, Deputy Commercial Officer and Marjan Gjoorsev, Product Manager of TINEX, of the second largest supermarket chain in the neighboring country, together with Ms. Ana Tanevska Gjorgjievska, Deputy General Manager of Holiday INN and owner of a hotel chain. The meeting with Mr. Doncho Nacev, Owner of the travel agency Arbo Travel, as well as the discussion with Mr. Ognen Ognenovski, head of the company TARGET GROUP, and Petar Denkovski, General Manager of the largest super market chain in North Macedonia and Serbia. Afterwards, the Greek delegation met with Ms. Biliana Mitzeska and Mr. Stetan Zistevski of the ZEGIN pharmacy chain, with 165 stores all with a separate food section, but also with the people of the ZITOLEB company, active in the bakery sector, Mr. Branko Risteski (General Manager) and Mr. Dejan Angelovski (Regional Manager).

The multi-day Greek mission, the first of a series of trips to important target markets for Greece, was completed with great success, paving the way for the development of the export activity of Greek companies. Next stop, Albania.

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