One hectare of agricultural land in Serbia could be as twice as expensive as the regional average and the prices range from €10,000 to €20,000, with the expectation of further growth in the future.
In some parts of the country, the price of land rent has also doubled in the last five years. Because of this unrealistic and unjustified trend, many people are giving up farming.
The president of the Farmers’ Association, Miroslav Kis, points out that in Romania, Hungary or Croatia, land of the same category and class is less expensive.
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“In our country, a hectare can cost up to 20,000 euro. The standard price for a plot that is nowhere near a paved road or a town/village ranges between 12,000 and 15,000 euro. If you consider the yield per unit, buying such expensive land will bring a return only in 20 or 50 years,” says Kis.
He explains that there is now a lot of demand for agricultural land in Serbia because many businesspeople, with extra cash to spare, are not investing as much in real estate as before, but in land.
Investors from different sectors consider the purchase of arable land as a better investment than buying apartments, gold or saving at a bank, because they believe the land will be worth more in a few years and are willing to pay any amount for it.
“Even the land rent is huge, twice as much as five years ago. People are giving up farming because it’s too expensive. In other countries, the rent is twice as cheap,’ says Kis.
He also notes that the big problem is that there is no clear definition of who is defined as a farmer, who owns the land and who cultivates and produces on it.
“The state has to address this problem and only farmers should benefit from subsidies. In our country, anyone who registers more than half a hectare of land is considered a farmer, but this person could be a bank manager, for instance. Is it possible that we have 600,000 registered farms?” Kis asks.
This post is also available in: Italiano