6.9 C
March 29, 2023

We should invest in modernising agriculture, not in subsidies, Minister says

Romania has to focus its investments on modernising agriculture, not on subsidies, Agriculture Minister Mihail Dumitru stated yesterday during a conference. “We should invest more in modernising agriculture instead of offering direct subsidies. The root of the problem remains irrespective of how many subsidies we offer,” Dumitru said, quoted by Mediafax. The minister thus answered the demand for the ministry to focus mainly on offering subsidies, a demand expressed by Gheorghe Caruz, President of the Pork Producers’ Council. According to Caruz, the elimination of subsidies will leave Romanian farms in a disadvantage compared to farms in the rest of the European Union. On the other hand, Dumitru pointed out that the Ministry of Agriculture plans to transform 76,000 subsistence farms in commercial farms in the next five years. “We want to help subsistence farms to develop in order for them to start selling produce too,” Dumitru said.

Agriculture Ministry has spent 90 pc of budget

Over 90 per cent of the 2010 Ministry of Agriculture budget has already been spent on 2009 subsidies and other arrears that have been paid in full, therefore the ministry has only got money left to cover diesel fuel subsidies, Agriculture Minister Mihail Dumitru said, according to Mediafax. The 2010 Agriculture Ministry budget was of over EUR 2 bln. Dumitru added that the institution had prepared a large number of state aid schemes that had already been sent to Brussels and negotiated with the European Commission, but that they could not be applied because of the lack of money. Two schemes are for pig and chicken farms, with respective values of RIN 493 M and RON 486 M. The third scheme worth RON 4.4 M is for compensating farmers for animal loss.

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