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Unfavourable bank loans hinder growth in agriculture; Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski meets his once ally, now critic, Menduh Thaci, after five years.
High interest rates, real estate mortgages and short grace periods for repayments are just some of the difficulties that Macedonian farmers face when trying to raise loans from the banks. The daily says that these unfavorable conditions hinder the growth of agriculture because only few farmers have cash on their own to invest in new equipment and extended production. Right now banks offer loans up to 200.000 euros with annual interest rates of 8 to 10 percent and a grace period of 18 months the most. But to raise such loan, you need guarantors as well as mortgage on your property.
The daily writes about the first meeting in five years between the Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski and his former coalition partner, now a bitter critic, Menduh Thaci of the opposition Democratic Party of Albanians. After the 40 minute parlay in the government, Thaci said that he and the PM on many things had completely opposing views but that they agreed on one thing, that the EU integration processes should be priority for all political parties. He said the two discussed establishing better communications between parties in order to prevent misunderstandings and possible incidents at the March local elections. The meeting also comes just seven months after Thaci briefly joined and then left the opposition block led by the Social Democrats.
Balkan Insight has not verified the reports and cannot vouch for their accuracy.
In two high-profile war crimes trials currently ongoing in Pristina, a series of witnesses have retracted previous statements alleging abuse at Kosovo Liberation Army detention centres.