26 Mar 2022 22:51

No critical barriers to sowing season in Ukraine, problem is about export logistics - agrarian policy minister

KYIV. March 26 (Interfax-Ukraine) - The sowing season has already begun in Ukraine and there are no critical obstacles to it; however, the Ukrainian Agriculture Ministry and the government are ready to react to all justified remarks and proposals and swiftly make necessary decisions, Ukrainian Agrarian Policy and Food Minister Mykola Solsky said at an online meeting with the European Business Association.

"The sowing season has already begun. We were able to launch simplified loans for small- and medium-size companies. Banks issued over 1 billion hryvni under this program over a week," Solsky said, allowing Interfax-Ukraine to quote him as saying.

This program ensures state guarantees of 80% of the loan for enterprises in which Ukrainians hold more than a 50% stake, he said.

"We will try to proliferate it to large companies and traders," he said.

Speaking about resources for the sowing season, Solsky said that there are enough seeds, as they were purchased in advance and the logistics of their delivery is not complicated.

There are enough fertilizers, he said. In particular, the launched ammonia enterprises of Group DF have excess of supply, and that is why the Ukrainian government allowed them to export 70,000 tonnes of fertilizers per month, he said.

About 50% of the demand in herbicides is covered, he said, adding that given logistical problems and peculiarities of their purchases, it is unlikely to swiftly change the situation.

"The biggest problem was about diesel fuel, but the second week has begun and almost every farmer has three or four offers, although the price is so far high. There are offers, not cheap, but there are," Solsky said.

The main problem is the export logistics as the ports are blocked, which almost zeroes out the liquidity of crops and much money of farmers, tentatively amounting to $7.5 billion, are frozen, he said.