Zaev's Government will hold its first session

Newly appointed Prime Minister Zoran Zaev said that he will hold his first Government session on Monday, and will begin organizing the Government. Zaev said that he will likely call for a rebalancing of the budget in Autumn, so that the Government would be able to implement the promises his SDSM party made.

"We will give initial instructions to the Ministers to prepare reports to the Government, including the Finance Minister Tevdovski. I believe that it is best to await for their initial reports to have an overview of the budget. My initial expectation is that we will need to have a rebalancing of the budget in Autumn to adjust to the new Government program and policies, but that will depend on the financial conditions and the liquidity of the budget", Zaev said at an event on Monday morning.

He said that he will like to meet with Ali Ahmeti, leader of his main coalition partner DUI, even today, to discuss the distribution of the deputy ministers. The Government, Zaev added, will need to appoint a new Secretary General and other ad-hoc bodies so that it will be able to begin working. According to Zaev, one of the topics on Monday will be to prepare for a list of economic proposals which SDSM campaigned on.

"It includes the promises we made to abolish the public broadcasting tax, to reintroduce subsidized electricity periods during the day and a welfare package for the most vulnerable citizens. Some of these proposals will be tied to separate budgets and some will be implemented through the new budget we will prepare", Zaev said.

In his comments, Zaev also opened the idea of hiring journalists as spokesmen in the Government. Asked about the idea to tear down the recently built fence around the Government, Zaev said that the building will be open to the people and that he will consult architects about how parts of the fence could be put to good use. The fence was erected after an attempt by SDSM supporters to storm the building in 2015.

Zaev also called on Public Prosecutor Marko Zvrlevski to resign, accusing him of being close to the previous Government led by VMRO-DPMNE. "I expect to see the response of the Public Prosecutor after my call. A priority for our Government is to reform the judiciary and this is why we say that Marko Zvrlevski is a symbol of the usurpation of the legal state and he needs to resign as soon as possible", Zaev said. VMRO-DPMNE leader Nikola Gruevski criticized this call, noting that Zvrlevski is tasked with prosecuting an on-going corruption case against Zaev and said that such calls are a scandalous attempt by Zaev to avoid the charges.