the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia

Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia

Year of Version:2011
Date of Entry into Force:November 20, 1991
Date of Text (Adopted):November 17, 1991
Type of Text:Constitution / Basic Law
Subject Matter:Other
The Constitution of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia was adopted on November 17, 1991, and has been amended 31 times, most recently on April 12, 2011. As the supreme law of the country, the Constitution defines the organization of the state authority, the separation of powers and the rights of the Macedonian citizens.

The Constitution guarantees protection to intellectual property rights including copyright and related rights, as follows:

1. Article 16 guarantees the freedom of expression (“The freedom of personal conviction, conscience, thought and public expression of thought is guaranteed.”) and free access to information (“The freedom of speech, public address, and the establishment of institutions for public information are guaranteed.”); these are applicable to intellectual property.

2. Articles 17 and 18 guarantee the protection of confidential information, the freedom and confidentiality of correspondence and other forms of communication, as well as the security and confidentiality of personal information. Protection from any violation of citizen’s personal integrity is also guaranteed, which is relevant to the protection of intellectual property.

3. From the aspect of collective management of copyright and related rights, Article 20 guarantees the freedom of association in order for the citizens to exercise and protect their political, economic, social, cultural and other rights and convictions. Citizens may freely establish associations of citizens and political parties, join or resign from them.

4. Article 29 provides that foreign subjects enjoy freedoms and rights guaranteed by the Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia under conditions regulated by law and international agreements.

5. Article 30 guarantees the right to property: “The right to ownership of property and the right of inheritance are guaranteed. Ownership of property creates rights and duties and should serve the well-being of both the individual and the community.” Such might cover intellectual property. Article 31 guarantees that foreign subjects in the Republic of Macedonia may acquire the right of ownership of property under conditions determined by law.

6. The freedom of creation is guaranteed. Article 47 provides that the freedom of scholarly, artistic and other forms of creative work is guaranteed. Rights deriving from scholarly, artistic or other intellectual creative work are guaranteed. The Republic stimulates, assists and protects the development of scholarship, the arts and culture.

7. Under Article 50, every citizen may invoke the protection of freedom and rights determined by the Constitution before the regular courts, as well as before the Constitutional Court of Macedonia, through a procedure based upon the principles of priority and urgency.

• Article 51 states that laws shall be in accordance with the Constitution and all other regulations in accordance with the Constitution and law.
• Article 52 provides that laws and other regulations are published before they come into force in “The Official Gazette of the Republic of Macedonia” at most seven days after the day of their adoption. Laws come into force on the eighth days after the day of the publication at the earliest, or on the day of publication in exceptional cases determined by the Assembly. Laws and other regulations may not have a retroactive effect, except in cases when this is more favorable for the citizens.

8. Article 55 guarantees the freedom of the market and entrepreneurship. It ensures an equal legal position to all parties in the market.

9. Article 56 guarantees the protection of genetic resources and traditional cultural expressions. According to this article all the resources of the country, its flora and fauna, amenities in common user, as well as the objects and buildings of particular cultural and historical value determiner by law, are amenities of common interest to the Republic and enjoy particular protection. The same provision also guarantees the protection, promotion and enhancement of the historical and artistic heritage of the Macedonian people and of the nationalities and the treasures of which it is composed regardless of their legal status.

10. Under Article 118, the international agreements ratified in accordance with the Constitution are part of the internal legal order and cannot be changed by law.
Available Texts: 

Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia, Complete document (pdf) [102 KB]


Устав на Република Македониjа Устав на Република Македониjа, Complete document (pdf) [264 KB]

WIPO Lex No.:MK014