Today was launched the largest IPARD project in the history of Struga. For the first time, we are not returning any money, but will be demanding more from the EU
Today in Struga was officially launched the factory Podgorka for production, processing, cutting and packing of meat according to the most modern standards.
The plant received the highest financial support from Measure 3 - Investment in processing and marketing of agricultural products under the IPARD 2 program, i.e. EUR 2.2 million.
The owner of the company Mevmed Dzemajloski informed that the company currently employs circa 50 people from the Struga region, and with the expansion of the factory capacities, which is planned for 2020 and 2021 will be opened a 100 new jobs, which, as he emphasized, will lead to further boosting of the local economy via using domestic suppliers in the production process.
The Director of the Payment Agency, Mr. Nikolce Babovski said that under the IPARD 2 Programme were signed 1,355 contracts for all measures, totaling 31.5m euros.
"To date, the Republic of North Macedonia has used 39.5 per cent of the total IPARD 2 funds. Until present, 814 contracts have been authorized and 12.4 million euros have been returned to applicants' bank accounts for fully implemented investments," said Babovski.
The Minister of Agriculture Forestry and Water Economy, Mr. Trajan Dimkovski added that this is a facility whose construction and equipment are fully in line with national and EU Food Safety and Product Quality Standards. The company started with 30 employees, 25 more jobs have been created and the number of new jobs is expected to grow. The Minister Dimkovski underlined that this is another proof that the country has the institutional capacity and knowledge to implement major projects such as this most modern capital investment in Struga, which managed to obtain European funds under the IPARD II program with a quality project. The investment in processing facilities is important not only for modernizing agriculture but also for the development of the overall economy as well as for increasing the exports of domestic products.
The Prime Minister, Mr. Zoran Zaev pointed out that such decisive investment steps of a domestic company, which managed to obtain funding from the IPARD program with a high quality project, are an encouraging and motivating success story. A valuable example that deserves to be followed and an experience to be learned from as to encourage other business initiatives.
In his address, the Prime Minister said that today will be launched the largest IPARD project in Struga's history and for the first time, we are not returning money but asking for more from the EU.
"During this period we are making great efforts to promote the regional cooperation. We are creating conditions that will enable 24-hour border control at one point and mutual recognition of the phytosanitary controls on products moving across the region. Thus will insure fast and safe transport of products from the region to reach the markets in due time, which will also be greatly assisted by the fast lanes for the trucks", said Prime Minister Zaev.
Today's launch of the factory Podgorka was attended by representatives of the European Union, who said that Republic of North Macedonia is a leader in the allocation of the IPARD funds in the region.