– The IFAD-funded projects implemented by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Water Management and Forestry through its Project Coordination Unit have been of great benefit to all agricultural producers, as well as the local communities included in their implementation – said minister Dedić today in Bihać at the memorandum signing ceremony with the municipalities of the Una-Sana Canton and Canton 10, which will participate in the eighth IFAD-funded operation – Rural Enterprises and Agricultural Development Project (READP).
Following the memorandum signing, the municipalities will be invited to nominate their projects in the public bidding process.
– We present this today so that municipalities can provide for the project co-financing funds in their budgets. Also, the Federation Government will participate in the infrastructure financing through the IFAD funds ranging from 50 to 95% in the implementation of projects of interest to each of the municipalities. Farmers will be provided opportunities to increase their cropland and improve their collection, processing and marketing potential – said minister Dedić.
The READP will be implemented in 5 clusters covering 73 municipalities of the Federation of BiH over the next five years. The project will include support to farmers, their associations, the development of local infrastructure – water supply, local roads, green markets, irrigation systems and other investments conducive to agricultural development.
The Rural Enterprises and Agriculture Development Project – said Halil Omanović, Director of the Project Coordination Unit – will be funded through the IFAD loan in the amount of 11.78 million EUR, out of which 60% is earmarked for Federation of BiH. The Project covers 73 municipalities divided into 5 geographically close clusters that also share similar production features and conditions.
The goal of the project is to increase the economic potential of small farmers by co-financing starter packages for various types of production such as berries, tree fruits, vegetables, herbs, forest fruit collection, dairy, honey and beekeeping, as well as the development of farmer associations.
– In the next five years, the Project will significantly contribute to economic development of rural areas across the Federation of BiH. Today, we signed the agreements with the municipalities of Cluster 1 that encompasses all municipalities from the Una-Sana Canton and three municipalities from the Canton 10, namely Drvar, Glamoč and Grahovo – said Omanović.
Mayors also stressed the importance of support to be provided through the Project to their small farmers and the development of the key local infrastructure. In the forthcoming period, memorandums will also be signed with other municipalities from the remaining clusters of the READ Project.