Minister of Economy and Regional Development Nebojsa Ciric today announced that Industrija Motora Rakovica (IMR) will be granted an earmarked credit of RSD 100 million in June in order to solve its problems and complete a contingent of tractors for the Ethiopian market.
During a visit to this tractor, engine and spare parts producer, Ciric stressed that 100–150 young people will be hired by the factory during the next year.
Speaking about the closed deal on supplying tractors to the Ethiopian market, during which the IMR is to deliver 15,000 tractors over the next five years, the Minister said that the first contingent of 300 tractors is on its way, while another 300 will be delivered over the next month-month and a half.
He added that in cooperation with IMR executives, the issue of unsettled debts and belated payments to employees, amounting to around RSD 200 million, will be resolved in the next 12 months.
The Minister said that over 800 people work in the factory on machines which are 20–30 years old and their average salary is RSD 29,000, which is below Belgrade average, but at least they are paid out on a regular basis.
If this company is operational, 200 other suppliers throughout Serbia also have work, Ciric observed, adding that the goal is to transform the IMR from a socially-owned into a state company.
He announced a meeting with a European company on Wednesday to discuss business and technical cooperation, but noted that it is still not known whether the two companies will be linked through privatisation or joint investment.
IMR and Metals and Engineering Corporation signed an agreement envisaging the export of 15,000 tractors to the Ethiopian market over the next five years, worth €160 million.
IMR’s total net production and services income in 2011 amounts to RSD 3.5 million.