EU Rewards Ministry of Agriculture of Georgia with 8mln Euro

With the help of the European Neighborhood Program for Agriculture and Rural Development (ENPARD) the Ministry of Agriculture of Georgia has been able to take important steps forward by forming an 888 farmer cooperative and creating 54 regional information-consultation centers throughout the country. Compared to previous years, the number of agricultural products has increased by 10%. In recognition of this achievement, the EU has allocated €8 million from the European Union funded ENPARD program to the Government of Georgia.

“The ENPARD program in Georgia aims at agricultural sector revitalization. We set clear objectives which should be achieved in the following years. There was a lot of doubt as to whether they were achievable but I am glad to note that the accomplishments exceed what was planned. The new tranche is further evidence of the fact that Georgia is capable of getting closer to the EU and the EU is ready to support this process. Agriculture will remain among our priorities,” said EU Ambassador to Georgia, Janos Herman.

The Minister of Agriculture of Georgia, Otar Danelia, thanked the Ambassador of the European Union for the support and noted that this will further boost agricultural development in Georgia.

“Today, it was officially announced that the EU Commission has issued a new tranche worth 8 million Euros to Georgia. This includes the part of 52 million euros allocated under the program- ENPARD 1. We have also agreed to launch the ENPARD II program which is awaiting official approval. The total amount of the second program is 60 million euros.

ENPARD was launched in 2013 with a total budget of 52 million euros. The Ministry of Agriculture of Georgia had to fulfill certain obligations under the program. Macroeconomic stability, public financial management system (PFM), transparency and a unified government policy for the development of agriculture in Georgia were the initial goals of the program covering the part of the ENPARD budget support; so far the assessment team has identified top results in all three areas.

The Ministry of Agriculture, along with the ENPARD, also attained the set goals in other components. 888 rural-agricultural cooperatives were registered by 19 May, 2015, which differs much from the planned number of 50. Four of them are considered “second-level” cooperatives, which provide an effective high value chain system, and the number of cooperatives is constantly growing in Georgia. Another requirement of the European Union has been over-met: more than 30 regional information and consultation centers had to be established under the program, however, the Ministry of Agriculture has set up 54 regional information and consultation service centers throughout Georgia since 2013, all of which meet international standards.

Meri Talishvili

22 October 2015 22:24