The entire Balkan region should consider agricultural production as a joint change to enter the European market with the help of our ideal climate. To achieve success we have to act together with substantial quantities of standardized products, Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Economy Ljupcho Nikolovski told the “Grow Up” conference in Kopaonik on Thursday.

“Our countries produce relatively small amounts with non-standardized quality in certain sub-sectors – horticulture, fruit picking, viticulture, which is why we do not meet the requirements of the European market in terms of quantities and standards. If this changes, as long as we join and work together, then the EU market will be open for us,” said Minister Nikolovski.

Nikolovski referred to IPARD and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and pointed to North Macedonia’s success in the wine sector and its products that are well recognized on the global market.

“The EU and Macedonia are strategic partners. The European delegation supports us through many projects that are financed by the EU itself. IPARD is our success story, with maximum use of funds. We are also leaders in the consolidation process for agricultural land, which we implement with support from FAO. We have other European projects focused on agriculture, but if farmers don’t change their habits, if we don’t achieve quality and sufficient production, we cannot expect success. We have to produce in sufficient quantities and satisfactory quality,” stressed Minister Nikolovski.

At the conference sidelines, Minister Nikolovski met with Nabil Gangi, FAO Deputy Regional Representative for Europe and Central Asia, where he stressed the results from the mutual cooperation and thanked for the successful implementation of the projects the Agriculture Ministry implements with FAO’s support.