1 Oct 2010 16:33

Growers harmed by drought to get 5 bln rubles in aid grants

MOSCOW. Oct 1 (Interfax) - Five billion rubles in aid grants will be transferred to agricultural producers in those Russian regions that suffered from this summer's drought and fierce heat in the coming week.

"The government has decided to distribute to the regions five billion rubles to cover damage from the drought. In the coming week it will be transferred to agricultural producers through the regions," Agriculture Minister Yelena Skrynnik said at the international exhibition and market Golden Autumn - 2010 on Friday in Moscow.

"These are direct grants," Skrynnik said. Furthermore, budgetary loans totaling 25 billion rubles are in the works, she said, and 15 billion rubles has already been sent to various regions to be doled out to agricultural producers.

"We are following where the money goes," she said. The Agriculture Ministry, she said, has been given the task of reporting weekly to the government on the receipt of the funds. "We will do this work," she said.