He added that “achieving the goals of the Ministry of Agriculture, requires cooperation and alliance with both Panagrotikos and other agricultural organizations, through a fruitful, honest and constructive dialogue” while thanking “the whole agricultural movement and especially Panagrotikos, for their general attitude and their decisive contribution to the implementation of the Government's policies in the last 4 years, with the aim of modernizing the agricultural sector, increasing the agricultural income, raising the living standard in the Cypriot countryside and the protection of the natural environment ” .
Strategic pursuit of our Ministry, continued Mr. Kadis “is the continuous progress and development of our agricultural sector, having as priorities the modernization and improvement of the competitiveness of agricultural holdings and the support of the production of quality agricultural products. To achieve these goals, we have implemented all available European financial instruments “he said and noted that” for the transitional period of the Rural Development Program 2021-22, programs and support measures have been designed, the budget of which is close to 100 million euros ».
In his greeting, the Minister also stated that “the Government is utilizing all existing possibilities to deal with the pandemic and is trying to reduce its financial impact. At the same time in the agricultural sector, more than 30 measures have been taken to date to address the effects of the pandemic and more than 25 million euros have been allocated to support all agricultural sectors affected. “
Russia's invasion of Ukraine, he continued, “has additional negative effects on the economy and we are called upon to manage both the energy crisis it has caused and a potential crisis in food and sufficiency as well as the increased cost of feed and agro-supplies.” The Government, in order to address these issues and in constant consultation with the agricultural movement, utilizes all the existing possibilities, aiming primarily at reducing the economic impact “, he stated and added that” soon financial aid of about 8 million euros will be paid to the sheep and goat sectors , cow breeding and pig farming “.
He added that “Cyprus was one of the few countries in the European Union that immediately and without delay, provided support, through its national budget, in its agricultural sector, for the effects of the Russian invasion. “Cyprus was a protagonist in the effort to persuade the European Commission to allocate additional funds, from the Community budget, to support farmers due to the situation in Ukraine,” he said, noting that “this effort seems to be working.”
Referring to the Cyprus Recovery and Sustainability Plan, in the context of the EU effort to recover the economies of the Member States affected by the pandemic, the Minister said that “an amount of approximately 1.2 billion euros will be allocated to Cyprus for investments and reforms. , beneficial for the economy of our place. “Even with the use of other resources, the total amount that will be allocated for the ambitious plan of the Government” Cyprus tomorrow “can exceed four billion euros, a significant part of which can be allocated to the primary sector.”
< At the same time, he assured that "the well-meaning interests of the agricultural sector and the Cypriot farmer are in the focus of the attention of the Government and the Ministry of Agriculture".
In his own greeting, the President of DISY Averof Neophytou said that “for decades we as a state have been trying to reduce the impact on the agricultural sector and livestock. Today, after the economic crisis, we have experienced the pandemic crisis and before we get rid of the pandemic crisis, we are facing a new crisis due to the war in Ukraine with increasing energy costs and more, resulting in a surge in the costs of farmers and κτηνοτρόφων ».
At the time, he continued, “as the prices of energy, feed and fertilizers have risen sharply, along with the reduction of production in war situations, we will also have an increase in agricultural products. The bet is to keep the increase and through a medium-term planning and incentives for the Cypriot farmer and stockbreeder, to reduce the costs but also the risks “.
We must continue “to make the income of the farmer and stockbreeder independent of any weather conditions. We live in the 21st century where we can with special programs to support the Cypriot farmer and stockbreeder “he said and noted that” only with radical changes can we stand by our farmers and stockbreeders. But until we implement measures that have an effect in the medium term, I stand by you and by our government. “
In this difficult period, Mr. Neophytou said, “unless Europe drastically changes traditional policies, the farmer and the stockbreeder will not be able to survive in the short term. We need to go to Europe and clarify that in terms of electricity, temporarily for farmers and stockbreeders, VAT should be not at 19% but at 5% “he said, adding that” the government needs together with other European countries to clarify this possibility “.
He also noted that “if it were not for the government of Nikos Anastasiadis and DISY and the right policies to support the rural world, things would be much, much worse today. However, we want to do even more for the backbone of Cypriot society “since, as he mentioned,” many more people, farmers and stockbreeders work to produce much less. “The percentage of people engaged in agriculture and animal husbandry is double their contribution to the gross national product and compared to all other groups their income is at 50% and they can not survive.”
Averof Neophytou expressed “thanks and gratitude” for what farmers and stockbreeders are doing for Cyprus and noted that “all the struggles for the freedom of the country started from the peasantry”.
In his speech, Kyriakos Kailas, President of Panagrotiko, stated that” the last years have been difficult for each of us, with the economic crisis, the pandemic and now the war. The primary sector has gone through and is going through its most difficult moments after the barbaric Turkish invasion “.
He added that “the main goal of Panagrotiko is the development of the rural economy, the improvement of working conditions and living standards of the rural world, the social and technological growth of the agricultural sector and the protection of environment. Panagrotikos's only concern and concern is to ensure the fair rights of the rural world and for them we fight in all consultations concerning farmers, supporting and upholding its well-meaning interests “.