8 Feb 2022 16:44

Situation on Russian fertilizer market gradually returning to normal - AgMin

MOSCOW. Feb 8 (Interfax) - The situation on the Russian fertilizer market is gradually returning to normal, the Agriculture Ministry said in a statement. The sowing campaign this year will begin earlier than on average in many previous years, the ministry said following a meeting of the headquarters for monitoring the situation in the agricultural sector and the food market chaired by Agriculture Minister Dmitry Patrushev.

"The situation on the fertilizer market is gradually normalizing. According to data from the regions, by early February farmers have bought more than 500,000 tonnes, which generally corresponds to the level of the same date in 2021. The accumulated resources, including residuals, exceed last year's by almost 270,000 tonnes," the statement said.

The cost of primary types of fertilizers is beginning to stabilize, Patrushev said, which, among other things, is due to by a set of measures adopted by the government.

According to forecasts, in 2022 the spring sowing will begin earlier than average. Plans call for increasing the area for cultivation of major crops, in particular, grain crops, sugar beets, vegetables and potatoes, the minister said. As far as material and technical resources are concerned, the provision of farmers with seeds currently exceeds 95%, the same level as last year.

Patrushev urged that these needs be fully covered by the beginning of mass sowing. The pace of procurement of fuel and lubricants also matches last year's pace.

The minister also urged the regions to maintain special oversight over the sowing campaign in optimal agro-technological timeframes, as well as monitoring the situation with winter crops.

Referring to the situation on the country's food market, Patrushev said that four socially important categories are being given special attention: bread, sugar, milk and vegetables. Additional support measures are being drawn up for producers of these products. In particular, this year 2.5 billion rubles in the form of subsidies will be allocated for bread manufacturers. The funds will be distributed in the near future.

Besides, allocation of no less than 10 billion rubles for purchase of fodder for dairy cattle is being worked on. This will make it possible to limit prices for raw milk and dairy products, the statement said.