On 25 March 2020, the EU Council reaffirmed that good neighborly relations and regional co-operation remain key elements of the enlargement process, as well as of the stabilization and association process. It reiterated the importance of continuing the implementation of bilateral agreements in good faith as an important part of the enlargement process, according to a document by which Bulgaria sets conditions for Macedonia on which depends the country’s negotiation process.
“A candidate country should not introduce open issues into the EU, especially with regard to Member States. Several such issues persist with regard to the Republic of North Macedonia, which could upon accession negatively affect the decision-making within the EU.
The issues are a consequence of the way this country is dealing with its own past. Finding long-lasting solutions would require genuine political will and courage. The access path of the Republic of North Macedonia provides a valuable opportunity for its leadership to break with the ideological legacy and practices of communist Yugoslavia. The Enlargement process must not legitimize the ethnic and linguistic engineering that has taken place during the former authoritarian regimes,” reads part of the memorandum.