Farmers protest on national roads

Farmers affected by drought and hail from central and southeastern districts took their agricultural machines to national roads in protest on August 11. They demand that the authorities should declare a state of agricultural emergency and take concrete measures to support the agricultural sector. They say the situation in which they found themselves is simply disastrous. Minister of Agriculture, Regional Development and Environment Ion Perju went to the farmers protesting in Hâncești. He enumerated the measures taken by the Government so far, saying that more measures will be taken, IPN reports.

According to Andrei Dînga, a farmer from Ștefan Vodă, there are at least 100 tractors on roads in Ștefan Vodă and Căușeni and the people continue to come, even if some of them were blocked by the police. The protest will not be stopped as the people do not have where to return. Everything was destroyed by hail and drought and the producers remained with the done work and with debts only. “The agricultural sector should be mandatorily supported so that it is stabilized at macro-financial level with large investment. This year is an extraordinarily difficult one. It does not have a precedent in Moldova’s modern history. We expect decisions from the authorities, not promises as they promised many things, but did nothing,” stated Andrei Dînga.

Another farmer from Hâncești said the young farmers simply lose hope in a future here, at home. In the Republic of Moldova, which is an agricultural country, tomatoes now cost a lot, 15 lei a kilogram. The vineyards were affected by frost. The fruit in orchards fall down. There will be no corn and sunflower seeds.

Another farmer stated that he returned to Moldova from abroad and invested money in agriculture, but suffers losses. After working for ten years abroad, he invested 8,000 lei per hectare and now the authorities compensate them with 1,000 lei per hectare. He took out a loan to purchase seeds and now needs the support of the state.

Minister Ion Perju said the authorities assessed the losses of the first group grain crops, while the estimations for the second group grain crops continue. The situation is difficult. The authorities intervened with measures and instruments to help the farmers. There were identified the necessary 200 million lei and the affected famers can file applications to get by 1,000 lei per hectare on average. The situation worsens also due to the COVID-19 pandemic, when budget funds must be provided to the health system. In another development, the minister said the agricultural producers should not be engaged in political actions.

The farmers ask that the financial resources allocated for covering the losses should be of at least 3,000 lei per hectare. They also want to be exempted from paying salary and land taxes and want a tax holiday for the first six months of 2021. The farmers ask for an extraordinary session of Parliament so that this adopts the decisions needed to satisfy their demands.

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