Minister of Agriculture, Water Administration and Rural Development Edmond Panariti called for the assistance of EU experts and institutions in developing best agricultural and rural development policies.

An agricultural policy forum, co-organised by the European Commission and the Ministry of Agriculture, Water Administration and Rural Development, was held in Tirana to exchange ideas, discussions and transfer of knowledge for rural development in the South East Europe.

In his address to the event, Agriculture Minister said that agricultural development policies should support sustainable growth and competitiveness of the agriculture, according to ATA agency.
“The forum is a great opportunity as more than 100 representatives from the relevant ministries, research institutes, agribusinesses, non-governmental organizations, international bodies and farmers from the EU member states will exchange ideas and adopt recommendations for the best agricultural and rural development policies,” Panariti added.

The Head of the EU Delegation to Albania, Ambassador Romana Vlahutin also attended the opening of the forum. In her remarks, EU Ambassador noted that governments are responsible to providing good quality and safe food for citizens.

“The agricultural sector can and should be a very important factor for growth of all local economies in Albania and in the region. Agriculture contributes to almost 20% of the GDP and a bit less than 50% of the employment in Albania. EU has earmarked 71 million euros in financing the Albanian agriculture under the IPARD programme for 2016-2020,” Vlahutin said.