The European Commission has approved 426 million leva, or about 218 million euro, in state aid for Bulgarian agricultural producers in the context of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
The proposed scheme is aimed at assisting micro, small and medium-sized companies “active in the primary production of certain agricultural products”, which have been affected by the price increase of energy, fertilizers and other input costs, caused by the current geopolitical crisis and the related sanctions, the Commission said in a statement.
“The agricultural sector has been hit particularly hard by the increases of energy prices and other input costs caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the related sanctions. This 218 million euro scheme approved today will enable Bulgaria to support farmers affected by the current geopolitical crisis,” EC vice-president in charge of competition Margrethe Vestager said in the statement.
“We continue to stand with Ukraine and its people. At the same time, we continue working closely with member states to ensure that national support measures can be put in place in a timely, coordinated and effective way, while protecting the level playing field in the single market,” Vestager said.
The specific agricultural products targeted by the scheme are small and large ruminants, horses, beehives, fruits and vegetables, rose oil, wine vines, nuts and tobacco.
Funding would be disbursed in the form of direct grants, with the amount of aid calculated on the basis of the number of animals and of hectares of agricultural land.
The size of the grants is limited to 62 000 euro per beneficiary and the aid must be disbursed by December 31.
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