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MOSCOW, October 9 (Itar-Tass) —— The Russian Agriculture Ministry has confirmed that farmers’ damages caused by this year’s severe drought exceed 14 billion roubles (USD 1 = RUB 31.0994), Russian Agriculture Minister Nikolai Fedorov told a news conference on Tuesday.
In his words, earlier the drought-hit regions estimated the consequences at 45 billion roubles. However, after re-calculations, the direct damage (the indicator which is used for the assessment of losses in the global practice) was at about 21 billion roubles.
Farmers stated that seedlings were damaged in a total area of 7.6 million hectares, while the ministry confirmed only 5.6 million hectares of farmlands under crops, Fedorov said.
Touching upon the forms of compensations to agricultural producers, the minister mentioned first of all insurance payments. The second form is six billion roubles of subsidies from the federal budget, which will be granted to farmers independently on the degree of the damage.
The third form of the aid, which was proposed by the Agriculture Ministry, envisages the granting of an interest-free loan in the minimum sum of ten percent of the declared value of damage.
“Other forms of the assistance are under working out. The regions are opting their own forms of aid to the drought-hit farmsteads,” the minister added.