Economic and Social Council

Economic and Social Council

декември 28, 2021

Economic and Social Council in the Republic of Macedonia

The Economic and social council of the Republic of Macedonia is relatively new tripartite institution, established in the end of 1996 . In the past, the agreement for establishment of ESC was signed between the Government, Confederation of Trade Unions and the Economic Chamber of Macedonia.
Promoting and encouraging tripartite social dialogue at national and local levels, as well as promotion of bipartite social dialogue at enterprise level and strengthening the capacity of social partners through involvement in all the activities is one of the most important commitments of the Government of the Republic of Macedonia. In 2005 amendments have been made in the Labour Code for functioning of the social dialogue on a bipartite and tripartite level. The law prescribes rules for establishment of organization of employers and trade unions as well as for collective agreement  ‘and employers’ organizations as well as collective bargaining and labor relations between the two sides. The law provides the basis for the creation of the Economic and Social Council (ESC).


In accordance with the Labour Code  the work of the  Economic and Social council is based on the need of tripartite cooperation among the government , the trade unions and the organization of employers of the Republic of Macedonia about solving the economic and social issues.


On the 25th of August , 2010 , the government of the Republic of Macedonia , the representative organization of employers of Macedonia and the representative trade unions ( federation and confederation of trade unions ) have concluded an agreement for establishment of the Economic and Social Council.


Functions and competences of the ESC

The economic and social council have an advisory consultative role during the creation and implementation of the economic and social strategies and policies and will influence in terms creation for economic and social stability in the country.

In compliance with the listed functions , the Council determines questions and gives opinions, proposals and recommendations to the government of the Republic of Macedonia for certain questions in the area of :

–          economic development;

–          labour market policy;

–          wage policy and prices ;

–          labour and social insurance;

–          social protection;

–          health protection;

–          environment,

–          fiscal policy;

–          working conditions  и and occupational safety;

–          education, culture and vocational training,  and

–     other areas that have influence over the economic and social interests for the employers and the employees.


ESC is competent for the following:

gives opinions, preparation and conclusions on its own initiative or as a request from any of the social partners , the government of the R.M within the authorization determined with the Labour Code and in this agreement ;

– suggestions for ratification and international labour standards in compliance with the convention of ILO 144 for tripartite consultation;

– implementation and constant following of the obligations of the ratification of the convention of ILO 144 for tripartite consultation and for other tripartite bodies as well

– and establishment of working bodies ( boards and commissions )


ESC shares its opinions  , suggestions and recommendations for certain laws, principles, national strategies and programs related to the economic and social interest of the employers and for the employees as well , before they got into consideration from the Government of the Republic of Macedonia, whereby the opinions regarding the Labour Code , employment, pension and disablement insurance , occupational health and safety are mandatory.

Structure of ESC

ESC is consisted of 12 members :

– four members of the Government of the Republic of Macedonia;


– four members from the representative organization of employers

– four members from the representative trade unions


The mandate of the ESC members lasts 4 years with the opportunity of  second nomination.              The following ESC members are nominated from the Government : Minister of labour and social policy, Minister of finance, Minister of economy and deputy president of the government who is responsible about  economic issues.

Every member of ESC has its own deputy.

Deputy members from paragraph 1  this article  of ESC are the deputies Ministers , and as a deputy member  of the President of the Republic of Macedonia is obliged for issues of the economic sphere.

The ESC has the following management structure :

  • President and two deputies of the president
  • Secretary-general

The meeting is managed by the president of the council. The president of the council is the ,Minister of labour and social policy who is also a member on the Council.

When the president is absent , the meeting is organized from one of his deputies , which alternately will be determined by the president of the Council.

The President Of the Council will represent the Council in front of the competent bodies and the publicity, he will be responsible for calling a meeting, suggesting agenda and  coordinating the work.  The secretary is not a member of the Council. He/she is a professional person employed in the Ministry of labour and social policy , nominated by the Minister of labour and social policy .  The secretary of the Council performs administrative  work and helps the president of the Council  in communication and calling meetings in the Council .

The Council’s meeting is held only if there are at least three members of the government of the Republic of Macedonia and three members of the social partners.

Decision making in the Council


The council adopts the suggestions, recommendations and the opinions by a consensus, from the total number of the members (  the government and the social partners) of the Council present on the meeting.   The Council submits the adopted opinions and documents to the certain Ministries and other authorities of the state department.

In accordance with the provisions of the agreement , for certain issues the Council can form two working groups :

  1. working group for labour code and employment;

2.working body for corporative social responsibility.

The Council regularly informs the publicity about its work with  announcements, press release and other forms for informing.

The members of the Council have the right to inform the publicity about the opinions and the points of view of certain questions that have been put on the Council’s agenda.

Also , ESC has its own website where you can inform about the last activities on the Council.


European economic and social council

The European economic and social council (EESC) is an advisory body of EU, that involves the representatives from different working groups  in the civil society , to participate in their own studies to give recommendations, to advice, and to improve the work on the European Council, European Parliament and the European Commission.  EESC is founded in 1957. With the Roma agreement this Committee has been founded as a mechanism by which the interested groups on the civil society will introduce themselves on the common market and there will be a communication among the economic and social actors and EU institutions. The Comission, the Council and the Parliament of EU are obliged to consult the Committee for making decisions in the economic and social policy areas.   
EESC on its behalf can make proposals regarding all other questions of its proper initiative. EESC has 317 members from all EU countries , and the number of representatives of each country is defined proportionally with the number of residents.  
The members of EESC are interested in different sectors of the civil society : employers , employees and civil associations. The members are suggested by the national governments , and they are declared by the EU Council with a 4 years mandate. On every two years EESC elects new management board  that consists of 37 members.
The Committee has a plenary meeting that is held once in a year. In meantime, the working groups of the Committee have a constant communication with the economic and social advising on a national level. Hence they collect information and they organize mutual discussions.    
EESC has developed really big cooperation with the economic and social councils all around the world. With the advising mutual meeting is organized every second year.
The Committee is divided on sicx sections that are dealing with with different areas of the economic and social life. For example the NAT group , agriculture, rural development and protection of the environment; in the the ESO group are the economic and monetary union and the economic and social cohesion, in the SOC group are is the employment policy , social questions and civil questions, INT is for the mutual market, production, TEN group (transport) , energy , infrastructure and information society and REX for foreign affairs.
Within the REX group there are delegations for different areas of interest of EU , among which is the contact group in Western Balkan. The main goal on this group is to keep in touch and to develop the relations with the economic and social councils in the region.  It helps them to establish relations with the EU institutions  and to participate in the processes of stabilization and accession. Couple years ago in the organization on this working group the first forum  has been held on the Forum of civil society in the Western Balkan countries.
The International association of economic and social councils and similar institutions is consisted of consultative advices- presented by the public institutions, in order to enable dialogue among the key economic and social factors of the member-countries.  
Speaking globally , The Statuary definitions of the association are to support and to promote the dialogue and the exchange of experience among the members and the organization itself, at the same time respecting the independency of each of them as well as development of the social dialogue among the social partners.
As part of the pleadings of the International association is the initiative of forming of economic and social councils in the countries in which this  type of institutions do not function, in order of realization of the declaration for protection of human rights and freedoms of UN and the fundamental principles and rights in the labour area supported by International Labour Organization.
In accordance with its competences and as a part of its own activities, this organization plays a role of observer of the following bodies :  

•    Economic and social council of UN
•    ILO
•    food and agriculture organization  

The president , the board of directors and the secretary general as well, manage the association.  
The association held a meeting once in  a year , where the key recommendations are made and afterwards they are printed in a form of annual report of International Organization of ESC and other similar institutions.  
The general assembly of International Organization of ESC and other similar institutions holds a meeting every second year, in which the members from the association and from national institutions as well participate.   Hence, the institutions themselves get to know each other with their work in details as well as with the dialogue among the association as a subject in the negotiations with the international institutions.  


Regarding the political support, given on the 4th meeting of stabilization and association of EU and the Republic of Macedonia on the 24th of July, 2007 , stabilization and association council has given support for the request of our country in order a joint consultative committee to be formed with European economic and social council.

In compliance with the conclusions on behalf of the participants on the forum of civil organizations of the Western Balkan , held from 4th -5th of June, 2008 Joint Consultative Committee has been established.  Also the civil organizations of the Republic of Macedonia have given their best during the establishment in order to strengthen the social dialogue and the cooperation among the representatives and the civil organizations, the social partners and the government.  

The joint consultative committee of the civil sector of the Republic of Macedonia is consisted  of 12 members, per six from each of the contracting parties :

–    Organization of employers of Macedonia  two members   
–    Federation of Trade Unions of Macedonia  one member
–    Confederation of free trade unions of Macedonia one member
–    Civil associations two members
–    Observers not more than 3 members

In accordance with the working rulebook,  

1.    JCC works on the basis for enlargement of EU through the promotion among the economic and social interested groups from the both sides.
2.    JCC covers all of the issues form economic and social sphere related to the globalization and association agreement.

3.    JCC can give opinion in a form of reports or conclusions or through other adequate activities