Bulgarian Grain Producers to Receive Full Amount of Subsidies by end-January 2014
A meeting of the National Association of Grain Producers, Prime Minister Plamen Oresharski and Agriculture Minister Dimitar Grekov has resulted in pledges that Bulgarian grain producers will be paid their subsidies in full amount by end-January 2014, including EU subsidies.
EU subsidies amount to BGN 1.118 B, while national complementary payments stand at BGN 2 per decare, or a total of around BGN 60 M, according to reports of investor.bg.
Speaking after Tuesday's meeting, Angel Vukodinov, Chair of the National Association of Grain Producers, explained that the Association had given up its demands that grain producers be paid around BGN 200 M by end-2013 because of the capacity of the budget.
"This sum of 200 million is less than 20% of the subsidies and will not have an impact on producers, which is why we agreed that the deadline would be by end-January," he noted.
If the authorities detect irregularities, grain producers will receive their subsidies by end-April after an inspection.
Agriculture Minister Dimitar Grekov, Angel Vukodinov and Deputy Finance Minister Lyudmila Petkova signed an agreement on the rules for paying subsidies.
During Tuesday's meeting, it was also agreed that the excise duty rate on fuels for agricultural purposes would be reduced, for which a total of BGN 84 M will be earmarked, and a reverse VAT charging mechanism would be introduced for grain trade for a period of two years.
The participants in the meeting also agreed that the authorities had to concentrate efforts on the creation of a law on branch organizations, with Grekov saying that it had to be discussed by end-2013.
The Agriculture Minister also announced that he had sent a request to the European Commission for an extension by seven years of the existing moratorium on purchasing land in Bulgaria by foreigners, adding that the response was expected within a month.
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