North Macedonian parliamentary election, 2020

Author Details
Author (Corporate)
Publication Date 2019-2020
Content Type ,

Summary:

Reports, analyses and information related to the early legislative election taking place in North Macedonia on 12 April 2020.

Further Information:

The country's Prime Minister Zoran Zaev called for an early election on 19 October 2019, following the failure by the European Union (EU) to provide a date for the launch of accession negotiations, despite an agreement with Greece on changing the country's name which had been widely seen as the main issue stalling the process. The leaders of the main political parties in North Macedonia agreed to hold an election on 12 April 2020 following a meeting with the country's President on 20 October.

The government officially stepped down on 4 January 2020, giving way to a caretaker cabinet including experts and some representatives of the opposition which would be tasked with the preparation of the election. On 16 February, the Parliament was formally dissolved and the election date confirmed for 12 April. However, the heads of the main political parties later agreed on 17 March to postpone the election due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

On 15 June, the main political parties agreed on a new date for the parliamentary election. Citizens returned to the polls on 15 July, while high-risk groups were allowed to vote beforehand. The incumbent centre-left SDSM was declared the winner of the election, slightly ahead (35.9%) of right-wing opposition VMRO-DPMNE (34.6%). Media outlets reported that coalition talks would be required for a parliamentary majority to be formed alongside a stable cabinet.

Related Link(s)
Commentary and Analysis
Wikipedia: 2020 North Macedonian parliamentary election https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2020_North_Macedonian_parliamentary_election
IFES Election Guide: Election for North Macedonian Assembly http://www.electionguide.org/elections/id/3314/
OSW: Analyses, 23/10/2019: North Macedonia decides to hold a snap parliamentary election https://www.osw.waw.pl/en/publikacje/analyses/2019-10-23/north-macedonia-decides-to-hold-a-snap-parliamentary-election
Politico, 12/11/2019: North Macedonia’s post-Macron melancholy https://www.politico.eu/article/north-macedonia-eu-accession-post-emmanuel-macron-melancholy/
Balkan Insight, 22/01/2020: North Macedonia: Snap Elections and EU Uncertainty https://balkaninsight.com/2020/01/22/north-macedonia-snap-elections-and-eu-uncertainty/
The Economist, 14/05/2020: No one knows how many people live in North Macedonia https://www.economist.com/europe/2020/05/14/no-one-knows-how-many-people-live-in-north-macedonia
Balkan Insight: Analysis, 13/07/2020: Tight Election Race Fails to Thrill North Macedonia’s Voters https://balkaninsight.com/2020/07/13/tight-election-race-fails-to-thrill-north-macedonias-voters/
LSE: EUROPP Blog, 15/07/2020: Four things to watch ahead of North Macedonia’s elections https://blogs.lse.ac.uk/europpblog/2020/07/15/four-things-to-watch-ahead-of-north-macedonias-elections/
Balkan Insight, 17/07/2020: North Macedonia’s Dirty Election Campaign Only Deepened Society’s Rifts https://balkaninsight.com/2020/07/17/north-macedonias-dirty-election-only-deepened-societys-rifts/
openDemocracy: Can Europe Make It?, 20/07/2020: Elections in North Macedonia: waiting for a kingmaker https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/can-europe-make-it/elections-north-macedonia-waiting-kingmaker/
Foreign Policy, 24/07/2020: North Macedonia’s Success Story May be About to End https://foreignpolicy.com/2020/07/24/north-macedonia-success-story-nato-eu-populism/
Europe Elects, 24/07/2020: North Macedonian Parliamentary Election: Kingmakers and Coalitions https://europeelects.eu/2020/07/24/north-macedonian-parliamentary-election-kingmakers-and-coalitions/
Balkan Insight, 06/08/2020: North Macedonia’s Ruling Party Won Twitter War in Election https://balkaninsight.com/2020/08/06/north-macedonias-ruling-party-won-twitter-war-in-election/

News
BBC News, 19/10/2019: North Macedonia Calls Snap Election After EC Talks Setback https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-50109054
Reuters, 19/10/2019: North Macedonian PM urges snap election after EU declines to launch accession talks https://www.reuters.com/article/idUSKBN1WY0B6
Euronews, 19/10/2019: North Macedonia PM calls for snap election after EU membership talks blocked https://www.euronews.com/2019/10/19/north-macedonia-pm-calls-for-snap-election-after-eu-membership-talks-blocked
Politico, 19/10/2019: North Macedonian prime minister calls for snap election after EU rebuff https://www.politico.eu/article/north-macedonian-prime-minister-calls-for-snap-election-after-eu-rebuff/
Reuters, 20/10/2019: North Macedonian Leaders Agree To Hold Snap Election on April 12 https://www.reuters.com/articleidUSKBN1WZ0OB
Bloomberg, 20/10/2019: North Macedonia Sets Date for Snap Election After EU Talks Fail https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-10-20/north-macedonia-sets-date-for-snap-election-after-eu-talks-fail
EUObserver, 21/10/2019: Snap elections in North Macedonia after EU rejection https://euobserver.com/enlargement/146343
Balkan Insight, 21/10/2019: Early Elections Test North Macedonia’s Unity over EU Drive https://balkaninsight.com/2019/10/21/early-elections-test-north-macedonias-unity-over-eu-drive/
Balkan Insight, 13/12/2019: North Macedonia Parties Unite Against Election Law Reform https://balkaninsight.com/2019/12/13/north-macedonia-parties-unite-against-election-law-reform/
EurActiv, 03/01/2020: North Macedonia PM Zaev quits before April polls https://www.euractiv.com/section/enlargement/news/north-macedonia-pm-zaev-quits-before-april-polls/
Deutsche Welle, 03/01/2020: Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev resigns https://p.dw.com/p/3VgXJ
Kathimerini, 03/01/2020: North Macedonia elects caretaker government after Zaev resigns http://www.ekathimerini.com/248119/article/ekathimerini/news/north-macedonia-elects-caretaker-government-after-zaev-resigns
Politico, 03/01/2020: North Macedonia’s PM resigns https://www.politico.eu/article/north-macedonian-pm-zoran-zaev-resigns/
Reuters, 16/02/2020: North Macedonia parliament dissolves, sets poll date, after EU shuns talks https://www.reuters.com/article/idUSKBN20A0ON
EUObserver, 19/02/2020: North Macedonia warns EU on 'dirtiest ever' election https://euobserver.com/enlargement/147494
EurActiv, 16/03/2020: Pressure on North Macedonia to delay elections over coronavirus https://www.euractiv.com/section/enlargement/news/pressure-on-north-macedonia-to-delay-elections-over-coronavirus/
Balkan Insight, 17/03/2020: North Macedonia Postpones April Polls Over Pandemic https://balkaninsight.com/2020/03/17/north-macedonia-postpones-april-polls-over-pandemic/
Reuters, 17/03/2020: North Macedonia postpones April 12 election over coronavirus https://www.reuters.com/article/idUSKBN2142NB
Reuters, 15/06/2020: North Macedonia elections set for July 15 despite pandemic https://www.reuters.com/article/idUSKBN23M2F1
Balkan Insight, 15/06/2020: North Macedonia Leaders Agree Election Date https://balkaninsight.com/2020/06/15/north-macedonia-leaders-agree-election-date/
EurActiv, 23/06/2020: North Macedonia faces ‘necessary evil’ when voters head to ballot https://www.euractiv.com/section/enlargement/news/north-macedonia-faces-necessary-evil-when-voters-head-to-ballot/
Reuters, 14/07/2020: Leader who changed North Macedonia's name fights to keep power in vote https://uk.reuters.com/article/idUKKCN24F2X1
Politico, 14/07/2020: Coronavirus casts shadow over North Macedonia’s election https://www.politico.eu/article/coronavirus-casts-shadow-over-north-macedonia-election-zoran-zaev/
Euronews, 14/07/2020: North Macedonia prepares for first election since name change - and it's going to be close https://www.euronews.com/2020/07/14/north-macedonia-prepares-for-first-election-since-name-change-and-it-s-going-to-be-close
Deutsche Welle, 14/07/2020: North Macedonia holds first election since changing its name https://p.dw.com/p/3fIif
The Guardian, 15/07/2020: Race too close to call as North Macedonia holds first poll since name change https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/jul/15/race-too-close-to-call-as-north-macedonia-holds-first-poll-since-name-change
RFE/RL, 15/07/2020: Virus-Hit North Macedonia Votes In Poll Seen As Crucial To EU Hopes https://www.rferl.org/a/north-macedonia-critical-election-for-european-future-zaev-mickoski/30727127.html
EurActiv, 15/07/2020: North Macedonia heads to election with pace of EU accession at stake https://www.euractiv.com/section/enlargement/news/north-macedonia-heads-to-election-with-pace-of-eu-accession-at-stake/
The Guardian, 16/07/2020: North Macedonia's Social Democrats grab slim election victory https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/jul/16/north-macedonia-social-democrats-election-victory
Deutsche Welle, 16/07/2020: North Macedonia readies for robust coalition talks after vote https://p.dw.com/p/3fNyp
Politico, 16/07/2020: Social Democrats win North Macedonia election https://www.politico.eu/article/social-democrats-win-north-macedonia-election-zoran-zaev/
EurActiv, 16/07/2020: North Macedonia’s pro-EU SDSM set to win parliamentary vote https://www.euractiv.com/section/enlargement/news/north-macedonias-pro-eu-sdsm-set-to-win-parliamentary-vote/
RFE/RL, 17/07/2020: North Macedonia's Pro-EU Social Democrats Win Elections, Face Complex Coalition Talks https://www.rferl.org/a/north-macedonia-election-zaev-coalition/30732551.html
Kathimerini, 17/07/2020: North Macedonia: Complex coalition talks to follow election https://www.ekathimerini.com/254823/article/ekathimerini/news/north-macedonia-complex-coalition-talks-to-follow-election

Official
OSCE: ODIHR: Early Parliamentary Elections, 12 April 2020 https://www.osce.org/odihr/elections/north-macedonia/447607
PES: News, 16/07/2020: PES congratulates SDSM on their strong election result in North Macedonia https://www.pes.eu/en/news-events/news/detail/PES-congratulates-SDSM-on-their-strong-election-result-in-North-Macedonia/
EU EEAS: Joint Statement by HR/VP Josep Borrell and Neighbourhood and Enlargement Commissioner Olivér Várhelyi on the early parliamentary elections in North Macedonia (17 July 2020) https://eeas.europa.eu/headquarters/headquarters-homepage/83066/

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