Kyiv, April 9th, 2014 – Agriculture Minister Igor Shvaika during a press briefing at the Ukrainian media crisis center said that in order to establish and assess the real state of affairs, agriculture is being monitored and audited currently. Results will be announced in late April – early May.
According to Igor Shvaika, sowing campaign goes according to the plan and faster than last year. But so far there are two problems – fuel cost increase by 30-40%, and the need for crediting, i.e. active intervention of the banking sector: “Yesterday the meeting, chaired by the Prime Minister of Ukraine, was held. Certain agreements were reached, particularly, credit extending by the state banks: “Oschad Bank” and “UkrEXIMBank”. The other question – now we are considering the ways to obtain financing through elaborated financial instruments. At the moment, the Agrarian Fund of Ukraine and the State Food and Grain Corporation of Ukraine, which enters into forward contracts for the purchase of grain for the next harvest, are financing the industry.” The Minister also said that some banks had already previously confirmed their readiness to provide loans in amount of UAH 5 to 8 billion.
According to the Minister, negotiations for cooperation with relevant Ministries of Latvia, Poland and other European countries are being held. One of the key issues Mr. Shvaika has also named is the work on the Ukrainian-Chinese cooperation (Ukrainian exports of new harvest grain). Currently, work continues under the old contract terms with further execution of the contract, while experts of the Ukrainian-Chinese group pursue negotiations for improvement and extension of the contract terms, namely supply of vehicles, machinery, equipment and facilities. SBU, prosecutors, and other necessary agencies are also investigating the contract. “Soon we will give conclusions about the real condition of this contract. Then all the insinuations will stop,”- said the Minister.
Speaking of Crimea, Igor Shvaika commented: “The amount of that “transfer”, which was carried through Crimea, will not critically hit us. We are establishing the mainland connections. In particular, we discuss the issue of dredging the Dnieper to create opportunities for swimming exports. One of the commercial companies is able to do this and make food and travel transportation.”
Answering the question regarding the exports of Ukrainian agricultural products to Russia, Mr Shvaika also informed that the negotiations between Ukrainian and Russian sides with respect to finding a solution to cancel the export ban are being conducted. If we fail, alternative markets will be searched for.
Igor Schvaika, Minister of Agricultural Policy and Food of Ukraine. For a long time he worked in the field of legal services. In 2000Mr. Shvaika founded and headed Zeus law firm. From February 2008 he is a Chairman of the Kharkiv regional organization of the All-Ukrainian Union “Svoboda”. As a candidate Mr. Shvaika participated in the elections for the post of the mayor of Kharkiv on October 31st, 2010.