Deputy Head of the EU Delegation to the Republic of Serbia Mateja Norčič Štamcar met with the Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management Branislav Nedimović during the 86th International Agricultural Fair in Novi Sad.
After the meeting, they visited the stand of the project “Strengthening the capacity to align with EU acquis in the fields of agriculture, rural development, food safety, the veterinary and phytosanitary policy”, which supports the Ministry of Agriculture during the EU accession negotiations process.
“The EU encourages and supports Serbia’s efforts to harmonize laws and standards with EU laws because we want the modern agricultural and processing sector to be harmonized and competitive on the EU and the international market,” said Norčič Štamcar.
“The current EU support for farmers and rural development in Serbia is now. We will provide over 500 tractors to Serbian farmers. Mechanization and increased production are the core of the assistance we provide. This is a great example that shows that EU funds flow to the individual, and for the benefit of the entire society, “she added, stressing that the EU is an important trading partner in the field of agriculture.
Nedimović and Norčič Štamcar also visited the stand with organic food.
“We are very grateful for the EU support provided in the negotiation process in agriculture, and I personally sincerely appreciate the expressed understanding and cooperation in terms of increasing the number of measures under the IPARD program, which is an important step and will provide significant opportunities for Serbian manufacturers for better use of IPARD funds, “Minister Nedimovic said.
Norčič Štamcar pointed out that the highest priorities of the EU have always included the protection of public health of citizens and that the EU places emphasis on food safety, which in turn enables free food trade and the welfare of farmers.
“The food sector in Serbia knows why it matters – the EU is by far the largest export market for Serbian agricultural products. The value of food exported from Serbia to the EU in 2018 exceeds 1.3 billion euros, with a positive trade balance in favor of Serbia of over 200 million euros, ” Stamcar said, adding that the value of EU aid for the agricultural sector is almost 100 million euro.
The International Agricultural Fair in Novi Sad is open on Saturday and will last until Friday, May 17th. During this period, more than 1500 exhibitors will take part in this most visited fair in Serbia.