Bulgaria to Request Leveling of EU Farming Subsidies

Bulgaria to Request Leveling of EU Farming Subsidies

Bulgaria is going to request an earlier leveling of the subsidies by square meter for farmers to equal those of older European Union Member States.

The statement was made Tuesday by the Bulgarian Deputy Agriculture Minister, Svetlana Boyanova, saying in order to be competitive on European markets, Bulgarian farmers should have available the same resources as their colleagues across the EU.

Boynova pointed out it is unfair for farmers, following the same rules, to receive different assistance only because they are in a different EU country, adding the Bulgarian Ministry will work to have the subsidies leveled as early as 2014 and appealed for the support of NGOs and businesses in the agriculture sector.

The Deputy Agriculture Minister further announced the cabinet is considering setting a ceiling for the help provided to large farms in order to better distribute the funds, but the measure would be applied only after a serious debate and a strict definition of notions such as "large farm," "small farm," and "active farmers".

Since EU funds became available for Bulgaria, BGN 1.2 B in direct subsidies and BGN 1.1 B under the Program for the Development of Rural Areas have been paid to farmers.

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