North Macedonia to Sell Seized Assets of Former PM Gruevski

Nikola Gruevski, 2014. Photo: Government of the Republic of Macedonia, Wikimedia, CC BY-SA 4.0.

SKOPJE — North Macedonia is poised to auction off a cache of properties once belonging to its embattled former Prime Minister, Nikola Gruevski. The Agency for Management of Forfeited Property has initiated procedures to return funds to the state budget from these assets.

Gruevski, who continues to be a central figure in North Macedonian politics, came to power as the leader of the VMRO-DPMNE party. Under his leadership, the party held sway in the country for a decade from 2006 to 2016. His tenure, however, was not without controversy. Allegations of corruption, wiretapping scandals, and abuse of power marred his time in office, leading to significant political upheaval and protests.

The properties in question include two apartments on Bihaćka street in Skopje, three apartments in Panorama Residence, and construction land in at least two municipalities. These assets were seized following final court decisions, and their impending sale was announced by the agency on its official Facebook page in October.

The backdrop to this property sale is Gruevski’s dramatic escape from North Macedonia. In 2018, after being sentenced in the “Tank” case, a high-profile corruption scandal, Gruevski fled the country. He later surfaced in Hungary, where he was granted asylum, much to the chagrin of Macedonian authorities who have since issued an international warrant for his arrest.

Gruevski’s flight and subsequent asylum in Hungary have been points of contention in diplomatic relations between North Macedonia and Hungary. It also underscores the broader challenges faced by countries in Southeast Europe as many of them grapple with issues of corruption, rule of law, and political accountability.


Image source: Government of North Macedonia

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