“It is very hard to compete with European producers such as France, Italy or Spain, but it is not impossible!” … especially with the help of EU4Business. Dmitry Gheorgiev, the administrator of Agrogled SRL, has invested more than €4 million in planting new varieties of grapes and buying wine-making equipment and technology in southern Moldova, thanks to EU4Business and the European Investment Bank (EIB).
Implemented by the EIB with the government of the Republic of Moldova, the Filière du Vin programme has supported Agrogled in investing for the future, providing the business with:
- a €2 million low-interest loan
- tax and customs exemptions for the import of modern equipment
- support for the construction of an irrigation reservoir
As a result of the investments, Agrogled was able to plant 11 new grape varieties across 433 hectares of vineyards in southern Moldova, a region known for its fertile land. The varieties included Pinot, Cabernet-Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Merlot, and Sauvignon, as well as Traminer and the bubbly Italian Prosecco. The European varieties will colour the palette of local wines produced, which will include blends with indigenous varieties.
Dmitry Gheorgiev insists that viticulture and winemaking are a vocation. “However, we must not only be creative but also act as good administrators, we need to think ‘like Germans’.”
With the support of the EIB and EU4Business, “we have created 30 new jobs even if the new technologies allowed us to mechanise much of work, including the harvesting. Besides this, we have ensured that we will not have losses due to drought. We have invested over €120,000 in building a dam for irrigation. We managed to make savings on the import of cuttings, of poles and wire because I benefited from the Filière du Vin facilities such as tax and customs exemptions, while the interest rate is lower than that offered by commercial banks."
The terms of the loan are ideally suited to the sector, allowing the investment to mature before repayments begin. “We have 10 years to repay the available credit and a grace period of 4 years, allowing enough time for the vineyards to mature and bring in a profit,” says Dmitry Gheorgiev, adding: “The money provided through the European Investment Bank is like a transfusion of fresh blood into the economy.”
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