President of the Republic of North Macedonia
Претседател на Република Северна Македонија (Macedonian)
Presidenti i Republikës së Maqedonisë së Veriut (Albanian)
Stevo Pendarovski
since 12 May 2019
StatusHead of State
ResidenceVilla Vodno[1]
AppointerDirect election
Term lengthFive years
renewable once
Constituting instrumentConstitution of North Macedonia
Formation16 April 1991
First holderKiro Gligorov
Salary17,250 USD annually[2]

The President of the Republic of North Macedonia (Macedonian: Претседател на Република Северна Македонија; Albanian: Presidenti i Republikës së Maqedonisë së Veriut) is the head of state of North Macedonia.

The office was first established a few months before the declaration of independence on 8 September 1991. The first president was Kiro Gligorov, the oldest Macedonian political official,[3] until his resignation in 1999. Although largely a ceremonial position, with most of the legislative power being vested in the prime minister and the Assembly, the president is the commander-in-chief of the armed forces and the first body for performing foreign affairs.[4][5]

Presidential rights and obligations are determined by the Constitution and laws. The president must be a citizen of North Macedonia, be over 40 years of age and have lived in North Macedonia for at least ten of the previous fifteen years before election.[6]

Electoral system

The president of North Macedonia is elected using a modified two-round system; a candidate can only be elected in the first round of voting if they receive the equivalent of over 50% of the vote from all registered voters.[7] In the second round, voter turnout must be at least 40% for the result to be deemed valid.[8]

The Constitution mandates that the president must be over 40 years of age and have lived in the country for ten of the last fifteen years before election day.

Before 2009, the constitution required a 50% turnout in the second round. The XXXI amendment to the constitution, voted on 9 January 2009 by all 86 present deputies, lowered it to the current 40%,[9] as the government feared the tendency of ever lower election turnout would make presidential elections frequently invalidated. In the 2009 Macedonian presidential election that followed, the turnout in the second round ended up being 42.6%.[10]


During the period of the Socialist Republic of Macedonia, there was a collective presidency which was abolished in 1991. Its first president was Metodija Andonov Čento, elected at the first plenary session of ASNOM, when the modern state was formed, while the last one was Vladimir Mitkov.[11]

Following the transition from socialist system to parliamentary democracy in 1990, the Socialist Republic of Macedonia changed the collective leadership with a single-president post in 1991, few months before independence. Kiro Gligorov became the first president of the Socialist Republic of Macedonia on 27 January 1991.[12] On 16 April 1991 the parliament adopted a constitutional amendment removing the term "Socialist" from the official name of the country, and on 7 June of the same year, the new name Republic of Macedonia was officially established.[13] Hence Gligorov continued his function as President of the Republic of Macedonia.

After the process of dissolution of Yugoslavia began, the Republic of Macedonia proclaimed full independence following a referendum held on 8 September 1991. Kiro Gligorov was incapacitated after an assassination attempt in 1995. Stojan Andov served as acting president for 44 days during Gligorov's incapacitation. On completing his second term as head of the independent state, Gligorov was succeeded by Boris Trajkovski in 1999. Following Trajkovski's death in 2004, he was succeeded by Branko Crvenkovski. Gjorge Ivanov won the 2009 presidential election and took office on 12 May 2009. He was re-elected in 2014. Stevo Pendarovski is the current incumbent and he took the office on 12 May 2019.

The position initially had some considerable powers, as Macedonia functioned within the framework of a de facto semi-presidential republic. The president had control over the military and was the primary actor when it came to setting the foreign policy agenda. As such, both Gligorov and Trajkovski were the primary representatives of the fledgling republic abroad. The 2001 Ohrid Agreement, brokered by President Trajkovski in an effort to reduce interethnic tensions in the country, led to the adoption of constitutional amendments on November 16, 2001, which, in addition to granting representational rights to the Albanian-speaking minority, also stripped the president of any executive authority he previously had.[14] President Trajkovski respected this arrangement for the remainder of his term, with authority over foreign policy passing first to Prime Minister Ljupco Georgievski and then to Prime Minister Branko Crvenkovski.

After Trajkovski's tragic death in 2004, Crvenkovski was elected as the next president, and it was widely expected that he would remain in de facto control of the government.[15] Owing to his clout in the Social Democratic Union, Crvenkovski maintained some level of control over foreign affairs during the premiership of Hari Kostov, but with the election of Vlado Buckovski, the new leader of the Social Democratic Union, as prime minister, Crvenkovski largely refrained from interfering with the government and limited his activities to ceremonial matters. While Crvenkovski was opposed to Nikola Gruevski after the latter's election as prime minister, there was little that he could have done, as by that time the presidency had very little authority.

In 2009, Crvenkovski was replaced as president by Gjorge Ivanov, an ally of Gruevski. After Greuvski resigned in 2016, an interim government led by Emil Dimitriev was inaugurated, but President Gjorge Ivanov largely took de facto lead over governance and halted judicial inquiries into Gruevski administration officials implicated in the wiretapping scandal. This caused massive protests, including calls for Ivanov's impeachment.

With the inauguration of Zoran Zaev executive authority returned to the government. In 2019, Ivanov was succeeded by Zaev ally Stevo Pendarovski as president. In 2020, Zaev briefly resigned as prime minister and was replaced by Oliver Spasovski. During Spasovski's interim premiership, President Pendarovski came to the fore as the country's leader, most notably in first declaring and then ending the country's State of Emergency in the fight against COVID-19. Pendarovski largely gave up his increased executive authority when Zaev returned as prime minister at the end of the year. In 2022, Zaev was replaced as prime minister by Dimitar Kovacevski.

List of presidents

Socialist Republic of Macedonia

Main article: Socialist Republic of Macedonia


  KPM/SKM   Independent

  Acting President
No. Name
Portrait Term of office Political party
President of Initiatory Committee for the Anti-fascist Assembly for the National Liberation of Macedonia

1 Metodija Andonov-Čento
1 October 1943 2 August 1944 KPM
Chairman of the Anti-fascist Assembly for the National Liberation of Macedonia

Metodija Andonov-Čento
2 August 1944 1 January 1945 KPM
Presidents of the Presidium of the People's Assembly
Metodija Andonov-Čento
1 January 1945 15 March 1946 KPM
Dimitar Nestorov
16 March 1946 30 December 1946 KPM
2 Blagoja Fotev
1947 4 January 1951 KPM
Vidoe Smilevski
4 January 1951 1953 KPM
renamed in 1952 to
Presidents of the People's Assembly
3 Dimče Stojanov
1953 19 December 1953 SKM
4 Lazar Koliševski
19 December 1953 26 June 1962 SKM
5 Ljupčo Arsov
26 June 1962 24 June 1963 SKM
6 Vidoe Smilevski
25 June 1963 12 May 1967 SKM
7 Mito Hadživasilev
12 May 1967 1 August 1968 SKM
8 Nikola Minčev
23 December 1968 6 May 1974 SKM
Presidents of the Presidency
9 Vidoe Smilevski
6 May 1974 31 October 1979 SKM
10 Ljupčo Arsov
31 October 1979 29 April 1982 SKM
11 Angel Čemerski
29 April 1982 29 April 1983 SKM
12 Blagoja Taleski
29 April 1983 29 April 1984 SKM
13 Tome Bukleski
29 April 1984 26 April 1985 SKM
14 Vančo Apostolski
26 April 1985 28 April 1986 SKM
Mateja Matevski
28 April 1986 30 April 1986 SKM
15 Dragoljub Stavrev
30 April 1986 May 1988 SKM
16 Jezdimir Bogdanski
May 1988 28 April 1990 SKM
17 Vladimir Mitkov
(born 1931)
28 April 1990 27 January 1991 SKM
18 Kiro Gligorov
27 January 1991 18 September 1991 Independent

Republic of Macedonia / North Macedonia

Main article: North Macedonia


  LPM   DA   VMRO-DPMNE   SDSM   Independent

  Acting president
No. Portrait Name
Term of office Political party Election
Took office Left office Time in office
Kiro Gligorov
Kiro Gligorov
18 September 19914 October 19954 years, 16 daysIndependent1994
Stojan Andov
Stojan Andov
(born 1935)
4 October 199517 November 199544 daysLPM
Kiro Gligorov
Kiro Gligorov
17 November 199519 November 19994 years, 2 daysIndependent
Savo Klimovski
Savo Klimovski
(born 1947)
19 November 199915 December 199926 daysDA
Boris Trajkovski
Boris Trajkovski
15 December 199926 February 2004 †4 years, 73 daysVMRO-DPMNE1999
Ljupčo Jordanovski
Ljupčo Jordanovski
26 February 200412 May 200476 daysSDSM
Branko Crvenkovski
Branko Crvenkovski
(born 1962)
12 May 200412 May 20095 yearsSDSM2004
Gjorge Ivanov
Gjorge Ivanov
(born 1960)
12 May 200912 May 201910 yearsVMRO-DPMNE2009
Stevo Pendarovski
Stevo Pendarovski
(born 1963)
12 May 2019Incumbent4 years, 350 daysSDSM2019

Latest election

Main article: 2019 North Macedonian presidential election

Candidate Party First round Second round
Votes % Votes %
Blerim Reka Independent 79.888 10,60
Gordana Siljanovska-Davkova VMRO-DPMNE 318.341 42,25 377.713 44,73
Stevo Pendarovski Social Democratic Union of Macedonia 322.581 42,81 436.212 53,59
Invalid/blank votes 32.696 4,34 30.437 3,60
Total 753.520 100 844.360 100
Registered voters/turnout 1.808.131 41,67 1,808,131 46,70
Source: SEC

See also


  1. ^ "". Archived from the original on 28 September 2011.
  2. ^ "Infographic: What are the Monthly Salaries of Presidents in the Region". Sarajevo Times. 25 February 2018.
  3. ^ "Eleven years since the death of President Kiro Gligorov". Sloboden Pečat. January 2023. Archived from the original on 24 March 2023.
  4. ^ "Macedonian President Urges Boycott Of Name Referendum". Radio Free Europe. 27 September 2018. Retrieved 12 March 2022.
  5. ^ "Stevo Pendarovski wins North Macedonia's presidential election". Al Jazeera. 6 May 2019. Retrieved 12 March 2022.
  6. ^ Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia, Article 80.
  7. ^ Polls Open in Macedonia Presidential Elections Balkan Insight, 13 April 2014
  8. ^ AMENDMENT XXXI Constitution of North Macedonia
  9. ^ "The Constitution of the Republic of North Macedonia".
  10. ^ Anna Fruhstorfer; Michael Hein (12 October 2016). Constitutional Politics in Central and Eastern Europe: From Post-Socialist Transition to the Reform of Political Systems. Springer. pp. 325–. ISBN 978-3-658-13762-5.
  11. ^ "Prof. Dr. Vladimir Mitkov - Faculty of Law, University of Skopje". Archived from the original on 30 June 2012.
  12. ^ Kiro Gligorov was elected as a President on 27 January 1991, when the Socialist Republic of Macedonia was still an official name of the state. After the change of the state's name, he continued his function as a President of the Republic of Macedonia The Official Site of The President of the Republic of Macedonia Archived 2009-04-30 at the Wayback Machine
  13. ^ "On This Day" - Macedonian Information Agency - MIA Archived 2008-01-25 at the Wayback Machine, see: 1991 (in Macedonian)
  14. ^ Keil, S.; Stahl, B. (17 December 2014). The Foreign Policies of Post-Yugoslav States: From Yugoslavia to Europe. ISBN 9781137384133.
  15. ^ "Profile: Branko Crvenkovski". 4 May 2004.