Bulgaria would support Macedonia in its attempts to become NATO and European Union member, Foreign Minister Ivailo Kalfin said.
International Herald Tribune (IHT) quoted Kalfin as saying that he hoped Macedonia would be invited to join NATO in 2008. Macedonia’s NATO accession was important both for Bulgaria and for the whole region, Kalfin said after a meeting with his Macedonian counterpart Antonio Milososki.
Kalfin also said that as an EU member state Bulgaria would support future EU enlargement.
“Bulgaria's position is that the enlargement is the most successful European project in the past decade," Kalfin said.
After the European Commission’s decision to let Bulgaria and Romania join the EU on January 1 2007, EC President Jose Manuel Barroso called for halt in the enlargement process.
Such decision would lead only a ‘distant chance” for Balkan countries such as Croatia, Macedonia, Serbia, Montenegro and Albania to enter the union, IHT said.
Bulgaria would impose a visa regime for the Macedonian citizens after January 1 2007, but “thanks to Bulgaria's decision to issue visas charge-free, mutual travel and communications will not suffer that much", Milososki said.