28 Dec 2023 17:27

Moldova introduces licensing for import of grains and oilseeds for 3 months

CHISINAU. Dec 28 (Interfax) - Moldova's Commission for Emergency Situations has introduced a licensing regime for the import of certain grains and oilseeds into the country, the website of the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Industry said.

According to the commission's order dated December 27, imports of wheat, corn and sunflower seeds (including crushed) over the next three months will only be permitted under license. Applications for licenses will be considered by a commission consisting of representatives of both the Ministries of Agriculture and Economic Development and Digitalization, as well as the National Food Safety Agency and professional organizations.

The measure was taken to stabilize grain prices and protect local producers. It creates an opportunity for Moldovan producers to sell their harvests and gain competitive advantages, the report says.

Only legal entities and individuals engaged in the production of oil and vegetable fats, grinding products, and animal feed producers will be able to obtain the right to import.

"The application for an import license must be accompanied by documents confirming the need to replenish stocks of the specified crops," the ministry said.

In early October, it was reported that the Commission for Emergency Situations of Moldova had decided to introduce licensing for the import of wheat, sunflower and corn. Then the Ministry of Agriculture indicated that the licensing procedure would be valid for the entire period of the state of emergency (valid in Moldova starting at the end of February 2022).

Moldovan farmers have repeatedly protested due to problems in the grain market associated with low prices for wheat, corn and sunflowers in neighboring Ukraine. Farmers complained that due to low prices, they were forced to sell their products below cost.

Moldova planned to introduce an embargo on Ukrainian agricultural products in the spring after a similar ban was imposed by other eastern European countries. However, in response, Ukraine threatened to impose a complete trade embargo on Moldova.