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RF Prime Minister urges to lower meat prices

April 17, 2013, 10:22 UTC+3

Russia’s accession to the WTO has not led to a significant reduction in retail prices

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Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev held a meeting on Tuesday on state support for live stock breeding. The prime minister expressed surprise at the fact that although the purchase price of meat fell by almost a third after Russia’s accession to the WTO, the retail meat prices have not dropped. Medvedev demanded to deal with this “disgrace.”

Russia’s accession to the WTO has not led to a significant reduction in retail prices. “It is, of course, a complete disgrace, anti-economic. Because the purchase prices for livestock products fell by almost a third, but in shops they have not practically changed. This means that economic regulators do not work,” the Nezavisimaya Gazeta newspaper quotes the prime minister.

Livestock farmers, meanwhile, have calmed down the public and advised to be patient: retail prices are not reduced immediately after the wholesale ones, because it takes time, the newspaper notes. Independent experts for their part have warned: “the effect of the WTO” in the form of prices’ lowering will not manifest itself soon – only in 2015. The publication believes that Tuesday’s meeting of the government on the support of live stock breeding may affect the retail store networks’ business. Russia’s accession to the WTO has not led to a significant reduction in retail prices.

The meeting with Dmitry Medvedev on state support of live stock breeding stated: the profit of meat producers remains in the retail store networks, and profitability is decreasing also because of rising grain prices, the Kommersant daily writes. So far the problem will be solved by targeted budgetary injections worth12 billion roubles, and in the future the government promises to ban the currently allowed trade practices due to which in case of the purchase price reduction of 30 percent, the retail prices fall by 2–3 percent.

The Moskovsky Komsomolets newspaper notes that the governors of agricultural regions asked the prime minister’s help - and got it. Medvedev said that livestock farmers this year will receive an additional 42 billion roubles, and 15 billion of the subsidies they will “get immediately.” It’s kind of an “emergency” injection. For each particular producer this will mean that the subsidies will amount to 9 roubles per one kilogram of pork, 3.5 roubles – per kilogram of poultry meat and 70 kopecks per 10 eggs. However, this will not fully solve the problems, for example, of pig farmers of the Belgorod Region. It is also clear that the injections of taxpayers’ money will have to be made not for the last time – there is always the threat of crop failure, and Russia is certainly not going to leave the WTO.


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