Main non-governmental actors are NGO’s and artists associations, although their influence is very limited, with a narrow scope and very often under evident political patronage.
Still, the NGOs were very active during the last years of the previous government and were supporting the so called “Colorfull Revolution” (along with several political parties). In June 2012, as an opposition to the former government’s cultural policy and its uncritical cultural practices, 14 organisations and NGOs promoted the Association “Core” as a new platform of the independent cultural scene of that time. Throughout its work the Association insisted on transparency by the Ministry of Culture and its annual public competitions, seeking participation of independent cultural representatives in the decision-making process, etc. Since its establishment the “Core” Association represented the essence of the independent cultural scene, constantly promoting the need for democratisation and decentralisation of culture, proving that the independent cultural and artistic scene was one of the vital players, but very underestimated, in Macedonian culture.
However, after the fall of the regime and the establishment of the new democratic coalition government (2017), the “Core” Association and many other pro-government NGO’s started to receive sufficient funds on a yearly basis from the Ministry of Culture and the government itself, thus transforming them into kind of passive and silent state favorites. The latest data shows that 33 NGO’s will receive 19.8 million MKD (325 000 EUR) from the government for their activities in 2021.