Environmental Problems of East Central Europe

By F. W. Carter; David Turnock | Go to book overview

16

Macedonia

Stefan Bužarovski and Aleksandar Stojmilov

Introduction

Macedonia was the only former Yugoslav republic to acquire its independence without war, and thus it has been hailed as one of the more successful examples of peaceful political transition in Central and Eastern Europe, given the challenging international context in the early years (Figure 16.1). Yet the economic and social legacies of Yugoslav communism, combined with regional political instability, pose an obstacle to more rapid development which could help to resource programmes geared to solving environmental problems. Within the former Yugoslavia, Macedonia was widely seen as an economically underdeveloped area, though this perception does not necessarily reflect historical realities which situated the country at a strategic and relatively prosperous Balkan crossroads, much coveted by the great powers. But its geographic unity was broken in 1913, when Bulgaria, Greece and Serbia partitioned the region into three parts following the withdrawal of the Ottoman Empire.

Serbian Macedonia (of which the present Macedonian state is a direct successor) then became a backward Yugoslav province, with traditional agriculture as the main source of revenue, until increased federal investment after the Second World War accelerated the pace of industrialisation and urbanisation. However, despite the fact that Yugoslavia's post-1945 economic growth rate was among the highest in the world, there was a notable gap between the advanced north and the lagging south in terms of the technological level of development and the industrial structure (Nikolovska 1995, p.6). Hence, when Macedonia declared independence in 1991, it had experienced a high level of rural-urban migration but the infrastructure was only moderately developed and the technologically outdated heavy industries were linked with significant pollution problems. Moreover, independence introduced new economic and political difficulties, so that the environmental issues could not be given the greatest attention. Thus there is still no comprehensive assessment and monitoring of the state of the Macedonian environment, and data in general are scarce and fragmented. But stabilisation and economic recovery are now creating a situation where ecological issues can be more fully considered (Dimitrijevik 1995).

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Environmental Problems of East Central Europe
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Illustrations viii
  • Acknowledgement xvii
  • Abbreviations xviii
  • Part I - Context 1
  • 1 - Introduction 3
  • References 16
  • 2 - Environmental Politics and Transition 22
  • References 37
  • 3 - Environmental Movements, Nation States and Globalisation 40
  • 4 - The Central Importance of the European Union 56
  • References 89
  • 5 - The Soviet Union and the Successor States 92
  • Part II - Country Studies 117
  • 6 - Czech Republic 119
  • 7 - East Germany 139
  • References 155
  • 8 - Hungary 157
  • References 180
  • 9 - Poland 183
  • References 203
  • 10 - Slovakia 207
  • 11 - Slovenia 228
  • References 246
  • Part III - Country Studies 249
  • 12 - Albania 251
  • References 277
  • 13 - Bosnia and Hercegovina 283
  • Note 303
  • 14 - Bulgaria 305
  • 15 - Croatia 330
  • 16 - Macedonia 347
  • References 364
  • 17 - Romania 366
  • References 391
  • 18 - Yugoslavia 396
  • Part IV - Conclusion 417
  • 19 - Conclusion 419
  • References 431
  • Index 433
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