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Albania, EU to co-finance 94 mln euro agriculture funding programme

Albania, EU to co-finance 94 mln euro agriculture funding programme Albania's Finance Ministry/All Rights Reserved.

TIRANA (Albania), January 24 (SeeNews) – Albania and the European Union (EU) will co-finance a 94 million euro ($115.3 million) funding programme in the country's agricultural sector, Albania’s agriculture minister Niko Peleshi has said.

The programme will be implemented under the EU's instrument for pre-accession assistance in rural development (IPARD), Peleshi said on Tuesday during a video conference posted on the Facebook page of Albanian prime minister Edi Rama.

The EU will provide 71 million euro, while the Albanian government will contribute 23 million euro to implement the programme that will offer direct financial assistance to farmers and with support rural development.

The objectives of IPARD are to provide assistance for the implementation of the acquis concerning the Common Agricultural Policy and to contribute to the sustainable adaptation of the agricultural sector and rural areas in the candidate country.

Low expenditures and structural problems such as the small size of local farms and crop fields are some of the main challenges Albania faces in the area of agriculture, the European Commission (EC) noted in a press release issued after a meeting of EU - Albania Stabilisation and Association Agreement subcommittee on agriculture and fisheries in November.

Albania became a candidate to join the EU in June 2014.

($ = 0.81511 euro)