VORONEZH, March 28 (Itar-Tass) — Hog raising and production of poultry meat require special support and protection after Russia joins the World Trade Organization, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said here Wednesday as he addressed a conference of agricultural managers that discussed preparations for the spring farming season.
“There’s no doubt these sectors /hog raising and poultry production/ require special attention and protections as Russia joins the WTO,” he said.
Putin recalled that Russia reserved some opportunities for imposing quotas on imports when it held talks on accession to the WTO.
He pointed out a growth of production of red meat and poultry meat in Russia, saying the output of red meat went up 50% last year. “That’s a really booming growth,” Putin said.
He also recalled that Russia has secured an opportunity for itself to continue subsidizing agriculture directly to the tune of $ 9 billion through to 2015.
By 2018, the Russian government is to cut down the direct subsidies but this does not apply to the spheres, which do not concern agricultural production as such, including infrastructures and social development of rural communities although these factors are crucial for the development of agriculture.
“Investments in these spheres won’t be limited in any way at all, and that’s why we have an opportunity to re-channel the resources from direct subsidies to the areas unlinked to the WTO,” Putin said.