Skopje, April 24, 2006—The International
Finance Corporation and Ministry of Justice of the Former Yugoslav Republic
of Macedonia have signed a Memorandum of Understanding that establishes
the foundations for further cooperation on developing mediation in for
the country over the next three years. The document was signed by
Mr. Antoine Courcelle - Labrousse, IFC Senior Program Manager, and H.E.
Ms. Meri Mladenovska-Gjorgjievska, Minister of Justice.
The MOU has been signed as part of the IFC Alternative Dispute Resolution
(ADR) Project, funded by the government of the Netherlands. The project’s
overall objective is to support establishment of an efficient system of
mediation that will contribute to improved enforcement of commercial contracts.
IFC’s Courcelle-Labrousse underlined that businesses need fair and accessible
ADR mechanisms for resolving issues before they flare up into disputes.
“We are very keen to promote this efficient way of resolving business
disputes in Macedonia. This is an important part of our strategy of promoting
a vibrant private sector and of improving the overall business climate
in the country through both our investment and technical assistance activities,”
Mediation is a process in which the neutral third party – the mediator
– assists parties in an effort to reach a mutually acceptable solution
to a dispute. IFC aims to achieve the objectives of its ADR project
by providing technical assistance through integrated activities in the
following areas: development of the legal framework and a cadre of world-class
mediators, establishment of two pilot court mediation centers, and promotion
through a comprehensive public awareness campaign.
The establishment of the mediation system is compatible with and supports
the ongoing judicial reform programs in FYR Macedonia, by providing appropriate
procedures to enable quicker, cheaper, and better access to justice for
The ADR Program was rolled out in the country in 2004, and since then a
legal framework for practicing of mediation has been taking shape, three
training programs for 50 prospective mediators have been delivered, and
two roundtables and an ADR conference have been organized to promote use
The project maintains strong regional connections and builds upon the
successes and lessons learned from ADR projects implemented within the
same framework of IFC support across the Southeast Europe region.
About the IFC
The International Finance Corporation, the private sector arm of the
World Bank Group, promotes sustainable private sector investment in developing
and transition countries, helping to reduce poverty and improve people’s
lives. IFC finances private sector investments, mobilizes capital in the
international financial markets, helps clients improve social and environmental
sustainability, and provides technical assistance and advice to governments
and businesses. Its 178 member countries provide its share capital and
collectively determine its policies.
From its founding in 1956 through FY05, IFC has committed more than $49
billion of its own funds and arranged $24 billion in syndications for 3,319
companies in 140 developing countries. IFC’s worldwide committed portfolio
as of FY05 was $19.3 billion for its own account and $5.3 billion held
for participants in loan syndications.
For more information, visit www.ifc.org.