During a Vienna economic conference, Zoran Zaev publicly pleaded with EU Commissioner Johannes Hahn, asking now that Macedonia changed its name, the EU doesn’t go back on its promise to allow “North Macedonia” to open accession talks. Hahn assured Macedonians for years that the EU will keep its promise, but as the time came to actually open accession talks, a number of countries, led by France, are objecting and it looks likely Macedonia will be stood up.

Opening of accession talks for EU entry is the only guarantee tha tthe country will remain stable, will introduce inclusive policies and that reform processes in North Macedonia will continue, Zaev told Hahn during their meeting in Vienna.

According to the press statement by Zaev’s Government, Hahn reiterated his support for opening accession talks. It is expected that the European Commission, where Hahn is in charge of enlargement, will approve opening of accession talks. But, as in many previous years, the issue can be blocked at the European Council level, where each member state has veto power.

Hahn took to Twitter to assure Macedonians that accession talks will be approved before the summer, a promise he is unlikely to keep.

Macedonia delivered on all requested reforms and much more. Now up to member states to acknowledge the convincing progress! I’m confident that “North Macedonia” will get EU’s green light before the summer, Hahn tweeted.