Legal Market Overview
In a year of mixed fortunes for the Balkan state, North Macedonia became an official member of NATO and formally began EU accession talks within days of the Covid-19 pandemic – and subsequent lockdowns–taking hold on the world. Nonetheless, the now-tangible prospect of Eurozone incorporation is a major win for a country which has displayed impressive annual growth for many years, following a prolonged period of post-Soviet privatisation and growing industrial exports – chiefly in metal and textiles.
Construction is a key growth sector, with support from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, continuing to fund a number of infrastructure projects. The liberalisation of the electricity sector in 2019 has also caused a boom in energy investment. Major foreign corporations and banks are also increasingly active in the region, with firms providing comprehensive legal services to leading multinationals or coordinating regional efforts entirely.
While the IMF projects a 4% dip in GDP as a result of the pandemic, an impressive 7% bounce-back is anticipated in 2021.
Key deals and general advisory mandates for the most high-profile clients are handled by established full-service domestic law firms such as Polenak Law Firm, Debarliev, Dameski & Kelesoska Attorneys at Law and Papazoski and Mishev Law Firm, while several foreign firms – including CMS, Schönherr and Karanovic & Partners in cooperation with local lawyers – are also active in the market.