According to the latest Openness Index, which ranked four countries from the Western Balkans – North Macedonia, Serbia, Montenegro, and Bosnia and Herzegovina, i.e. their governments and parliaments, the Government of North Macedonia was ranked first on the list, while the country’s Parliament was ranked third.

The evaluation of the state of good governance of the parliaments and the executive branches of the four Western Balkan countries – North Macedonia, Serbia, Montenegro, and Bosnia and Herzegovina, which is traditionally carried out by Metamorphosis Foundation in cooperation with its partners from the regional network of NGOs – Accountability, Technology and Institutional Openness of South East Europe (ACTION SEE), with the support of USAID’s Civic Engagement Project and the National Endowment for Democracy, this year, apart from the Western Balkan countries, has also monitored the parliaments of Croatia and Slovenia, which are EU member countries.

The goal of the evaluation according to the Openness Index is to determine the degree to which good governance principles are observed in the region.

According to the research, the most open is the Government of North Macedonia which meets 83.43% of the criteria for openness. It is followed by the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina (the government of the country) with 74.9%. Tthe third is the Government of Montenegro with 59.46%, followed by the Council of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina (the government of the Croatian-Bosnian entity of B&H) with 58.42%. The Government of the Republic of Serbia meets 47.67% of the criteria and the Government of the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina meets 50.18% of the criteria. The Government of the Republika Srpska (the Serbian entity in Bosnia&Herzegovina) was ranked lowest, since it met 38.53% of the criteria for openness.

As the first country in the region that has published and implemented a Transparency Sтrategy, North Macedonia gave an example of how the institutions should systematically approach and direct its efforts towards proactive transparency and openness toward its citizens. The best results were achieved by North Macedonia’s ministries with 62%, followed by the Montenegrin ministries with 57.9%, the ministries of Serbia with 48.7% and the ministries in Bosnia and Herzegovina, which meet 30.6% of the criteria for openness, indicates the Openness Index.

The Parliament of the Republic of North Macedonia meets 68.1% of the indicators for openness and is ranked third in the region (first ranked is the Parliament of Montenegro with 77.89 % and is followed by the Parliament of Slovenia with 72.31 % of the openness indicators).

This paper is accompanied with practical recommendations as to how the executive government and the Parliament in North Macedonia can improve their obeyance of the good governance principles in the future. The recommendations will be communicated to senior civil servants in all of the monitored institutions through meetings as well as to the general public via social media and public events.

The research is conducted annually and is allowing us to compare the degree to which all parties will act in accordance with these recommendations. This assessment is available in Macedonian, Albanian and English language at Metamorphosis’s webpage https://metamorphosis.org.mk/izdanija_arhiva/

This research was conducted by Metamorphosis Foundation as part of USAID’s Civic Engagement Project. For more information about Metamorphosis Foundation, please visit its web page нашата веб-страница and USAID’s Civic Engagement Project.