– During 2017, the Guarantee Fund of AP Vojvodina plans, with the strong support of the AP Vojvodina Government, via the programmes of various Secretariats, to subsidise interest rates on loans intended for owners of registered agricultural holdings in Vojvodina. This will secure extremely favourable lending conditions for farmers, amongst the lowest on the market. Likewise, the Guarantee Fund of AP Vojvodina, as an institution founded by the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina, also fulfils its mission and justifies its existence by issuing guarantees for those users who do not have sufficient credit potential to apply to banks directly for funds. Here I’m primarily referring to small farms, newly registered farms and farms owned by young people who want to engage in agricultural production. Actually, our offers are designed in such a way that farmers can secure funds for the realisation of their entire investment, and in all areas envisaged by the IPARD II programme of the Republic of Serbia 2014-2020.
Alongside the existing funding lines, we plan to introduce new ones, primarily for the construction of silos, warehouses and cold storage facilities, as they are in high demand on the market
How important to the success of the investments approved by the Fund is an active approach to local government?
– We have initiated meetings with representatives of all 45 local authorities on the territory of Vojvodina, at which the main topic is precisely the advancement of cooperation and the planning of joint activities. With this we are creating conditions to better and more effectively inform potential users about existing funding application lines of the Guarantee Fund of AP Vojvodina, as well as the development of new lines of funding in accordance with the needs of users.
The Fund has previously signed a series of contracts with local governments on the subsidising of interest rates for credit lines that are supported by our guarantees, primarily for purchasing agricultural equipment and machinery, livestock and perennial plants. According to this model, the interest is subsidised in its entirety or up to a maximum level of three per cent, for loans that mature in five to seven years, with local governments allocating funds for these purposes.
In addition to farms/agricultural holdings, you also finance other businesses, as well as start-up programmes. How much interest in type of funding exists?
– Throughout the entire year there is an interest in all of the financing lines of the Fund, and at present there are open funding competitions for support in the procurement of agricultural machinery and equipment, the purchase of agricultural land, the construction of prefabricated silos, the purchase of energy efficient equipment and equipment for utilising renewable energy sources, as well as credit for the purchase of equipment for companies, entrepreneurs and agricultural cooperatives. Alongside the existing funding lines, we plan to introduce new ones, primarily for the construction of silos, warehouses and cold storage facilities, as they are in high demand on the market.