On March 29, 2023, the kick-off conference of the Media4EU project took place in Skopje, North Macedonia. The conference, which saw the participation of 30 representatives of international bodies, national and local media and Civil Society Organisations, formally marks the beginning of the project and its activities.
“Media4EU – Civil Society Program for the participation of media in North Macedonia’s EU membership negotiation” is a 3-year long project dedicated to improving the standards of journalism and the media sphere of North Macedonia. The one-day conference began with a presentation of the project and its executives by Mr. Dimitar Nikolovski, Executive director of EUROTHINK – Center for European Strategies, leader of the project. It was followed by presentations on the importance of media and CSOs in the EU negotiation process of North Macedonia, featuring Mr. David Geer, the Ambassador of the European Union to the Republic of North Macedonia, and Mr. Bojan Marchic, Deputy Prime Minister for European Affairs, who highlighted the support that the government offered to the project and the importance of this type of projects in the battle against misinformation.
The conference continued with a presentation of the project activities and the grant scheme by the project consortium, composed by EUROTHINK, ALDA and BIRC – Balkan Institute for Regional Cooperation and it concluded with a Q&A session, where the participants had the opportunity to engage in constructive discussions.
Mr. Marco Boaria, Head of the Development Department of ALDA, briefly introduced the commitment of the Organisation towards the media topic, underlining the importance of the freedom of speech: “ALDA has consistently advocated for years for engagement in media and freedom of speech. A principle followed is that a plurality of voices and more opportunities for dialogue leads to better local governance and more opportunities for the grievances of citizens to be aired out.” – said Mr. Boaria.
The Media4EU project aims at improving media and journalism standards of North Macedonia
The aim of the Media4EU project is to bring the journalism and media spheres of North Macedonia up to European standards, featuring trainings, workshops, and exchanges with European journalists to strengthen the capacities of journalism in North Macedonia and contribute to raising the attractiveness of the profession for the youth. The project recognises that stronger standards for media are necessary for the country’s EU accession process and aims to be a good source of information for journalists and constituents alike, as well as allow for opportunities for cooperation among media, civil society, and state institutions. Overall, this conference promoted the project and its activities and provided an excellent opportunity for exchanges and networking in the media sector of North Macedonia.