According to the calculations of Agriculture Minister Virginija Baltraitienė, losses of Lithuanian dairy and meat producers may possibly amount to LTL 500 million (EUR 145 million), because of food product embargo imposed by Russia.
Virginija Baltraitienė
Virginija Baltraitienė
© DELFI / Šarūnas Mažeika

Based on preliminary estimates offered by banks, Russian embargo can cost the European Union up to LTL 23 billion (EUR 6.6 billion). The minister of agriculture said that the latest weeks have been intense not only for processors but meat and dairy producers as well. Although the Government rejected the Agriculture Ministry's proposal to compensate price difference to producers, saying this would increase budget deficit, the ministry will employ other measures to partially compensate for losses.

Baltraitienė also said that processors acted dishonestly by instantly reducing buying-in prices, even though they agreed with the Ministry of Agriculture not to do so for two weeks after the announcement of embargo.

"People show me documents in which they are offered to agree with price reduction retroactively, otherwise they are threatened with contract termination. This is wrong as this is our common problem. The government and the Ministry of Agriculture are looking for possibilities to help the whole sector, without excluding processors and producers. Meanwhile, one branch is trying to solve its own problems. What support for producers can we talk about if milk buying-in price has been drastically reduced by LTL 0.3-0.4 (EUR 0.08-0.12) and meat - by LTL 2 (EUR 0.58). We must seek a common way out of the situation," the minister told the Žinių Radijas radio.

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