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Harma Fruit invests in Macedonia

Greek import-export company looking to establish major packhouse operation at strategic location just across border.

Harma Fruit invests in Macedonia

Christos Kelesidies and Jerry Naumoff pictured at a recent meeting to discuss the Agritera investment plan

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Greek company Harma Fruit is reportedly planning to spend €6m on the construction and development of a new packing, coldstorage and distribution centre for fresh produce in Macedonia.

Due for completion by the end of 2014, the centre will be located in Gevgelija, right next to the border with Greece, and operated by a newly registered company called Agritera.

Harma Fruit, which produces a range of fruit including stonefruit, apples, grapes, kiwifruit and citrus, sells to retail and wholesale customers mainly in Russia and Ukraine but also in European markets like Germany, the Netherlands, Romania, Poland and the Czech Republic, as well as the Middle East.

Owner Christos Kelesidies, who will oversee operations at Agritera, said the strategic location close to the Greek border was a key factor in the company's decision to invest in Macedonia.

"I want to express my gratitude for the hospitality and favorable working conditions," he said in a statement. "We have vast experience in this business and want to change the modus operandi of agriculture and production in your country.

"We want to build a big plant that would make us competitive at the European market."

Jerry Naumoff, Macedonia's Minister for Foreign Investment, commented: "Agritera is surprised by the competitive business environment that Macedonia offers to investors, enabling export of high-quality agriculture products in Europe and beyond."

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