Tuesday, 12 October 2021

17th Sitting of the Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management Committee

At the sitting held on 12 October, the members of the Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management Committee considered the current situation in agriculture, budget – incentives.

The sitting was attended by State Secretary at the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management Zeljko Radosevic, Assistant Directors of the Directorate for Agrarian Payments Bojan Zivkovic and Dragoslav Milutinovic and the Minister’s Chief-of-Staff Marko Saranovac.

Committee Chairman Marijan Risticevic said that he had informed all the relevant parties about the conclusions reached by the Committee at the last sitting when it considered the 2022 Draft Budget. He said that the Ministry of Finance is willing to pay part of the money owed to farmers, stressing that all funds allocated for agricultural incentives are actually an investment into the development of the state. If the incentives are late and irregular, the state will suffer the consequences, said Risticevic. He also mentioned the noticeable increase in the price of inputs into production such as mineral fertiliser and gas.

State Secretary Zeljko Radosevic thanked the Committee for constructive cooperation and support of the Ministry and its work. He outlined the current agricultural work in progress. He agreed with Risticevic about the rise in the prices of all production materials, from seeds to mineral fertilisers, adding that farmers are the biggest investors in Serbia, because they invest over two billion EUR in their work every year, from which the budget of the Republic of Serbia also benefits. That is why as much budgetary funds as possible should be provided in support of agriculture, said Radosevic. He also said that good results yielded by the export of agricultural products demonstrate the vitality of our agriculture despite the global crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. In the Republic of Serbia 2022 Draft Budget, 837 million RSD less has been allocated for agriculture, he added, and the Committee has undertaken appropriate steps to change this. It is his belief that the budgetary allocation for agriculture would be increased yet and farmers’ subsidies would be paid on time next year.

In ensuing discussion followed the Committee members and Ministry representatives exchanged their views and opinions on the current situation in agriculture, incentives and next year’s agricultural budget.

The sitting was chaired by Committee Chairman Marijan Risticevic and attended by the following Committee members and deputy members: Momir Stojilkovic, Olja Petrovic, Velibor Stanojlovic, Goran Kovacevic, Nenad Filipovic, Milija Miletic, Stanislava Janosevic, Nikola Kozovic, Arpad Fremond, Sonja Todorovic, Veroljub Matic, Milenka Subic, Haji Milorad Stosic and Zarko Bogatinovic

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