About Agriculture and Forestry

Out of the total population of the country, which is somewhat more than 2 million inhabitants, more than 50% live in rural areas. Agriculture is dominating the rural economy with 10% of the GDP.  Farmed food products and fish products amount to a total 450 million Euros per year i.e. almost 15% of the total export of the country. Main export products are tobacco, wine, lamb and dried and fresh vegetables. Many parts of the country have fertile soil which combined with warm climate has a potential for production of high quality wide range of products. 510.00 ha  in the country are under plantations built by 190,000 farm businesses, 80% of which are small family properties of sizes about 1.7 ha. The family farms employ about 440,000 members of households and 141,000 seasonal workers. Of the total value of agricultural production in the country, 73% comes from arable land and horticulture. The remaining 27% come from animal production, mainly milk, followed by pork and beef, as well as sheep and goats.

Small family farms in the country face the same challenges as many family farms in many parts of Europe – lack of land, lack of capital, weak negotiating position in the food supply chain, low income. Most of the micro farm businesses have no registered status thus are prevented from applying for supporting measures from the national or EU funds. Many medium and even larger farm businesses are prevented from this as well, due to inability to acquire more land (partially due to insecurity regarding the registry of land lots), lack of capital, cost of loans, weak infrastructure and many other factors. Some suffer from unfavorable impact due to climate change, due to increased temperatures and decreased precipitation: this has imposed the challenge of irrigation and developing strategies for new plantations.

Forestry in the Republic of Macedonia is part of the economy that amounts to 0.3-0.5% of the GDP, but if community values are stressed, its contribution is far greater. The general share of the wood industry (primary and secondary processing of wood, furniture, paper, celluloses and other) in the GDP is 2.5-3%.

Forests in Macedonia are characterized with rich biodiversity. Macedonia has significant recourses of other forest products: herbs, mushrooms, forest fruits and different game. The significance of forests is stressed by the fact that the largest parts of protected areas are actually forests.

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Office Address:

ul. “Kosta Veselinov” br.3a,
1000 Skopje R. Makedonija
Tel: +389 (2) 3075 506 Fax: +389 (2) 3075 503
info email: info@ruralnet.mk

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