Agriculture is still of great importance to the economy
of Northern Macedonia, but the sector that has increased
most during the 1990s is the service and service sector.
countryaah, Northern Macedonia's economy is heavily dependent on the
outside world, and it has been hit hard by the region's many
conflicts. By participating in the economic sanctions
against the former Yugoslavia, it was suspended from its
dominant export market. At the same time, a Greek trade
blockade against present-day Northern Macedonia disrupted
much of the country's business. At the end of the 1990s,
some economic recovery took place, but as a result of the
conflict in Kosovo in 1998-99 and the ethnic unrest in the
country, the economy deteriorated again. During the 1990s,
the country received loans from the IMF against the
implementation of agricultural reforms and privatization of
business. All in all, these measures slowly led to an
improvement in the economy, but at the same time also led to
widespread protests against increased price levels.
Agriculture is still of great importance to the country's
economy. Livestock (sheep and cattle) account for just over
half of agricultural production.
Arable farming is mainly located in the river valleys.
About 20 percent of the agricultural area is irrigated
(including Bitola and Prilep). The most important crops are
wheat, barley, corn, rice, tobacco, cotton, sugar beet,
citrus fruits and grapes. The milling units are generally
Northern Macedonia imports more agricultural goods than
it exports, but the country has the condition of becoming
Raw material resources and energy consumption
Northern Macedonia has limited mineral deposits. The most
important export products are nickel iron as well as steel
and oil products. Copper ore is mined in the eastern part of
the country, lead and zinc ore in the eastern part of the
country, nickel at Kavadarci in the south and brown coal at
Suvodol in the south-east.
Most of the energy demand is covered by coal and oil;
coal is mined in the country while oil (mainly crude oil) is
imported. Renewable energy types contribute just over 24 per
cent to total production. Some rivers are utilized for water
energy, but the wind power is poorly developed. Nuclear
energy is missing.
After the Second World War, extensive industrialization
took place. However, the industrial investment has been
relatively unilaterally focused on heavy industry based on
existing mineral deposits (especially iron).
The Skopje area developed from the Second World War until
the country's independence into one of Yugoslavia's most
important industrial centers. In addition to the metallurgy
sector (including iron and steel mills), there is the
engineering, food and textile industry as well as the
chemical industry, which is also in Veles. In Kavadarci is a
large iron and nickel plant. During the 1990s, the
industrial sector was gradually privatized. Most recently,
privatization has reached SMEs, while the larger, often
obsolete companies are still owned by the state.