Opportunities for the development of credit cooperatives in Bulgaria
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Author: Ganeva, Stefani; Hristov, Krum
Bulgarian agriculture is characterized by a bipolar structure. On the one hand there are a large number of small farms, and the other hand – few but large producers. After the start of the accession programmes in the field of agriculture and rural areas, that polarization increased. The reasons for this could be sought in the tendency for financial markets to neglect the agricultural sector. Bank loans are mostly granted to large farms that are properly accounting, with proven profits, and not least – under serious collateral security. This is limiting the investment activities of small producers, making it impossible to participate in the schemes of the European programmes. One form of crediting in agriculture, particularly suitable for small and medium-size producers, is the system of credit cooperatives and mutual agricultural credit associations of private farmers. The role of credit cooperatives as an opportunity for financing Bulgarian agriculture was studied and analyzed.