Bashkortostan establishes Grain Fund

UFA, August 26 (Itar-Tass) —— Head of the Republic of Bashkortostan Rustem Khamitov has made a decision to establish a republican reserve fund of grain in order to support farmers in the period of prices’ decline on the grain market, the presidential press service told Itar-Tass on Friday.

The republic plans to borrow 1.5 billion roubles (USD 1 = RUB 28.87) against security of Bashkortostan’s budget, the press service said.

The fund will accumulate 530,000 tonnes of new-harvest grain, which will be reliably bought from farmers on pawn. Therefore, the republic will create a reserve of food and feed grain. Farmers can sell wheat, rye and barley to the fund, the press service said.

The republican Agriculture Ministry will coordinate the formation of the grain reserve fund.

Money from the sale of grain will be spent for the purchase of fuel and lubricants, maintenance of machinery, payment of wages and other goals, the press service said.

“This year’s big harvest of grain caused a problem – prices sharply went down,” Khamitov said, adding, “It is impossible to sale grain at such prices.”

“While rendering assistance to our farmers, we had no plans to transfer the aid to pockets of intermediaries,” the republican leader said.

In the current situation, the reserve fund is expected to become an efficient mechanism of assistance to grain producers, he said. The purchase of grain at the end of autumn harvesting period will assist villagers, who face certain problems with money in this time.

Farmers of Bashkortostan started harvesting grain at the end of July. They are using new Russia- and foreign-designed agricultural machinery. This year, the republican agriculture sector bought 1,790 units of machinery total worth about two billion roubles, or 800 million roubles more than in 2010.

The republican assignment for the purpose made it possible to upgrade the region’s agriculture equipment fleet, filling the later with the best samples of the machine building industry.

The total area of Bashkortostan’s farmlands is 3.2 million hectares, including 1.8 million hectares of croplands.

According to preliminary estimates, this year’s net grain harvest may exceed 3.3 million tonnes with an average grain yield of 2,500 kilograms per hectare, which will allow the republic to fully meet its demand for grain, as well as to create a grain seed fund.

The Republic of Bashkortostan is located in a well-populated and developed part of the country and covers an area of 143,600 square kilometres or 0.8 percent of Russia’s total area. It borders on the Perm, Sverdlovsk, Chelyabinsk and Orenburg regions, as well as the Republic of Tatarstan and the Republic of Udmurtia.

The republic is a constituent part of the Urals economic region; it is second only to the Central region of Russia in scale of industrial development and adjoins the highly developed Volga and West Siberian economic regions.

Present-day, Bashkortostan is one of the most stable regions of Russia both economically and politically. Due to diversified industry structure it has become a donor for the whole country’s budget.

The republic’s GDP and basic macroeconomic figures place it within ten most developed regions of Russia, in some industries Bashkortostan maintains leading positions: every seventh ton of oil is processed in the republic, more than half of all Russia’s butyl and isobutyl alcohols is produced here, as well as half of the country’s soda ash and chemical weed and pest killers, the greater part of caustic soda, polyethylene, and synthetic resins and plastics.

A strong national economic complex has been formed in the republic, including diversified industry, agriculture, and a branching network of railways, highways, and pipelines.

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