Gruevski for Republika: Chauvinism Labels Are False Propaganda of Soros
In the second part of the interview for Republika, VMRO-DPMNE leader Nikola Gruevski speaks of the accusations that he is a nationalist and of his meeting with George Soros in Prague.
Read the segment of the interview with the first person of VMRO-DPMNE below.
Do you believe what Soros does is more against you or for them, i.e. the opposition?
"I think both. I think he is not aware of the latter. He is unaware that these people in 2006 were almost on their knees with 39 percent unemployment, the highest in Europe at the time, with 32 percent poverty, ranking us at 105 on his Transparency International list. Us, VMRO, we are the ones that are fighting against that, and despite all crisis and obstacles we reduced the unemployment to around 23 percent, and the poverty rate at some 21 percent, and we are now at number 66 on the list of Transparency. Pensions grew by over 70 percent, and the lowest by 90 percent, the social aid over 70 percent. We also have more media per capita in Europe. Courts are no longer elected by the Parliament, like in the period of SDSM's rule, they are rather formed by a more complicated system. According to the official ranking of World Bank, Macedonia ranks fifth in Europe and tenth in the world regarding the conditions it provides for businesses. As a country, we are worst ranked for indices financed by Soros, such as Reporters without Borders, Freedom House, etc. Business Insider has declared us a country with lowest effective tax rate in the world - 7.4 percent. And the consulting house of IBM declared us a country with most foreign investments in Europe in the past 2 years. We have made more reforms in all sectors than any other government so far, and that is why we have the support of people."
You had a meeting with Soros a couple of years ago in Prague. What did you talk about?
"We had a brief meeting of around 15-20 minutes at the Conference for the Roma Decade. This is an area in which Soros is quite active, financing a number of projects in numerous countries. All the Prime Ministers and Heads of Delegations had brief meetings with him and his team, discussing mainly the activities of the Government regarding Roma people's assistance. With regards to this issue, we are among the most successful countries as compared with other countries in Eastern Europe, although there is still room for improvement.
At the end of the meeting, he wanted to be informed about the process of resolving the name dispute. He suggested that the issue is resolved as soon as possible as Papandreou would be Prime Minster for a short period of time, after which it would be difficult to settle the name issue. We already knew that, but, unfortunately, regarding the crucial aspects of the problem, Greece had the same well-known red lines which are unacceptable for Macedonia. He also shared some other details about the process, so I concluded that he is well acquainted with the problem. We did not talk about other issues. There was neither time nor accessibility for further discussions."
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