Farmers in Serbia will soon be in the race for 60 million euros from EU funds

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Without modern facilities, mechanization, equipment there is no progress in agriculture. In addition to national incentives, producers from the European Union have been available to producers in recent years. In the coming days, the announcement of the largest competition so far within the IPARD project worth around 60 million euros is expected.
Serbian agriculture is not the same as ten years ago, when IPARD was agreed. Many manufacturers have modernized production, but there are still opportunities for further improvement. Velibor Savic from Martinac already submitted a request at the first competition from the IPARD project and received money for a roller, a tank and the construction of a pit of 300 cubic meters for sewage. The value of the investment was around 220 thousand euros.
Savic says that the complete realization lasted about a year.
“Six months after the request, we waited for the ministry’s approval for our project. When we got the approval, we immediately started building the shaft pit. The procurement of machinery went quickly, so now we have met EU standards for manure storage and can move on with the farm,” states Savic.
Money from European funds helped Vlado Zivanovic to conquer new markets.
“The new tea packaging line, purchased with IPARD funds, enabled us to export to several EU countries and America,” notes Vlada Zivanovic, owner of the company “Jadar Pak” from Osecina.
“The agency recognized that our production program has a perspective and we received funds without any problems. The procedure is normal, with the necessary documentation. We plan to build a refrigerator and a dryer for fruits and herbs, and we will apply again,” Zivanovic added.
The biggest competition so far is expected to be announced in the coming days. Producers will have around 60 million euros at their disposal, which they will be able to use for the purchase of physical property of agricultural farms.
The Minister of Agriculture, Branislav Nedimovic, points out that there are still a lot of difficulties in terms of supplementing the requests and consulting companies that work with farmers.
“I cannot determine when they will choose a consultant. It is our job to get them through the entire procedure. We will have one novelty, and that is that we will approve an advance payment of 50 percent,” Nedimovic points out.
According to him, that will greatly contribute to the speed of realization of investments in Serbian agriculture.
“When you get a solution, you will get 50 percent in advance, and when you realize the remaining fifty,” says Nedimovic.
Farmers’ interest in IPARD programs is growing. Last year, 320 requests were approved, and two years earlier only 20. European Union funds were used by producers in Serbia for the purchase of tractors, modernization of processing and packaging equipment, construction of facilities and development of rural tourism, RTS reports.