The three Serbian businessmen, Matijevic, Kostic and Miskovic are the biggest land owners in Serbia, followed by the companies from Ireland, Hungary and Croatia – the Danas daily writes.
Petar Matijevic, the owner of meat industry Matijevic, is by far the biggest arable land owner in the country with about 35,000 hectares of land and he is also the biggest private farmer in Serbia.
Miodrag Kostic, who owns 30,000 hectares of land, is in the second place, followed by Miroslav Miskovic, who, through his company Delta Agrar, handles 14,500 hectares of land in Serbia.
Among the foreign companies, the Ireland-based company, Baltic Property Investment Limited is the biggest foreign land owner, with 13,000 hectares of land, followed by the Hungarian company CBA with about 2,650 hectares, and Marko Pipunic’s Zito Group from Osijek, which has about 2,000 hectares of land in Serbia.
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Agroeconomist Milan Prostran says that the biggest responsibility for the existence of huge private agricultural farms lies in the hands of the state, which has the country’s arable land to private investors too cheap.
“The state sold this land at the price of between 150 to 200 euro per hectare, and now the new owners estimate it to be worth 20,000 euro per hectare,” he said.
On the other hand, privatization advisor Branko Pavlovic says that he sees nothing controversial in the fact that private companies own so much land providing they fulfill their obligations and regularly pay land rent to the state.
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