15 January 2020 – A seminar “Awareness raising of actors for diversification of activities in Korça Municipality” was held in the city of Korça. The seminar was organized by the Rural Association Support Programme (RASP), within the project “Increasing the Capacity of Farmers and Other Stakeholders in Diversifying Rural Activities”, funded by the Food Organization of the United Nations (FAO).
The seminar aimed at awareness creation among farmers and rural agribusinesses in this area for the need of diversification of farms and products. Further, the seminar’s objectives were to identify the technical and financial needs of farmers and to support them in diversifying their production and benefit from EU IPARD funds and national agricultural schemes.
In the event, the “Albanian Agribusiness Support Facility” (AASF), funded by the EBRD and the Albanian Government, was featured as an additional opportunity for agribusinesses from the region to receive financial support and technical assistance. During his presentation, Mr. Ilir Pilku, Senior Agribusiness Expert at AASF, emphasized the advantages and benefits of this innovative scheme for farmers. Special focus was given to the interlinking of national grant schemes and IPARD with the AASF risk sharing mechanisms through financial institutions.
Farmers and agribusinesses, incl. fruit growers, producer of medicinal plants and agri-tourism companies participated in the workshop. Besides, representatives from the Municipality of Korca, representatives of QTTB Korca and Partner Financial Institutions participated.
After the core seminar, discussion roundtables with groups of agribusinesses were organized in order to identify the technical and financial needs, propose available options and bring together different actors. Furthermore, agribusinesses were familiarized them with important aspects of business development such as farming investments, alternative financing, marketing, and market criteria and quality standards.