The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has announced a new IPARD public call for grants to support primary agricultural production, through which producers can receive €12.3 million from EU funds and the national budget. Interested farmers can compete with projects from €10,000 to €500,000. For investments, they can receive grants from 60% to 70%, which means that grants of up to €350,000 per project are possible.
The Head of Sector for Cooperation in the EU Delegation to Montenegro, Herman Spitz, estimated that the IPARD programme should increase the agri-food sector's ability to cope with competitive market pressures and help Montenegro to gradually align with EU rules and standards. He said he expects a high interest from Montenegrin farmers for the new IPARD call.
"Rural areas of Montenegro need a certain future, and agriculture must play a central role in the economic development of these areas, but also make a key contribution to the development of the whole country," Spic said.
The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Milutin Simovic, stressed that the IPARD programme is becoming a symbol of recognition of the EU's support to Montenegro. So far, 500 requests have been received in three of the IPARD calls for two measures, the highest number in the region.
“At the moment, in the first two calls, investments worth a total of €28 million are underway in Montenegro. This investment momentum has started and it is expected to generate a grant of around €15 million. As a result of the third public call (for processing), to which the total investment value of €38 million has arrived, a new investment cycle will follow. Even today, with a new call for primary production, we are launching a third investment cycle, expecting to receive at least as many requests as we received through the first call, to which there were 389, ” explained Simovic.
The Ministry of Agriculture has established Open Door Days at the Payments Directorate to help farmers and processors become more familiar with the application procedures for the IPARD programme. The first open day was held for the media and partners, who can then inform potential users.