Acta Universitatis Danubius. Œconomica, Vol 7, No 2 (2011)

Western Balkans: State of Agriculture and its Opportunities on the Eve of EU Accession - II

Tamás Mizik


The Western Balkan countries can be characterised by their shared goal, which is the
quickest possible accession to the European Union. Agriculture is an important obstacle to achieving
this goal. The role of agriculture differs widely among the analysed countries but is more important
than the average of the EU. This study gives a comprehensive overview of the most important
agricultural indicators related to both crop and livestock production. These indicators present a
precise picture of the sector’s relevance, production structure, efficiency and international relations.
After demonstrating changes in input use, production structure, prices, terms of trade and agricultural
policies, the next section identifies some of the reasons for these changes. The time horizon of the
analysis goes back to the early nineties and tries to capture some transition effects. The consequences
of the Yugoslav war can be easily recognised in every country involved. However, since the end of
the war Serbia became the leading producer and the only net exporter of agricultural goods in the
region. Nevertheless, the current situation is endangered by several issues, such as imbalanced
sectoral production, fragmented production structure, relatively low yields, unfavourable export
composition, and poor food hygiene and quality control, which anticipate painful and hard actions
need to be carried out.


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