Medvedev calls for subsidies for farm machinery production to continue
STANITSA GEORGIEVSKAYA, STAVRPOL TER. Oct 9 (Interfax) - The program to subsidize farm machinery production needs to continue, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said.
Medvedev said during meetings with employees of the Rassvet agricultural enterprise, with Russian President Vladimir Putin also present, that the government has allocated "very good money" - around 35 billion rubles in the last five years - to subsidize farm machinery manufacturers.
"But Vladimir Vladimirovich, we need to subsidize farm machinery manufacturing some more, perhaps another five years at least, in order to restore those types of farm machinery that are being retired, the stock of machinery, including for crop growing and horticulture. We definitely have to continue this program by another five years," he said, addressing Putin.
Putin said that by expert estimates, given what had already been done, "previous amounts are not needed, around 8 billion rubles a year are needed." "The ministry probably knows about this, it just has to discussit with the Finance Ministry, and then brief the prime minister. I think Dmitry Anatolyevich [Medvedev] will back it," Putin said.
Putin and Medvedev were asked to give their backing to the emergence of small farm machinery manufacturing in Russia. "We all want this - you do, we do. It all depends on the market. Lately we have been allocating quite a lot of money to subsidize farm machinery manufacturing, and production of this in Russia has tripled in the last few years. We've started to export it for the first time," Putin said, when asked to try and facilitate the emergence of a Russian industry for gardening tools and equipment.
"But in order to expand the range there has to be demand for that equipment. There have not been enough gardens. Who would we have been producing it for if there haven't been enough gardens, and everything has been imported from Europe? Now that everything has appeared, when all this is being done, a market for this sort of equipment will emerge," he said.
Medvedev for his part said small farm equipment production might be subsidized as well. "We've focused on large machinery, on combine harvesters, on snow removal machinery, this really is good, competitive. But we don't have that much small equipment yet. We'll need to look at it and subsidize the program, to get things established and produce more," he said.