Development of Value Chains for Agricultural Production is Crucial for Development of Rural Areas
- The Russian Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Alexander Petrikov, stressed that agriculture was a strategic sector for Russia. Indeed, the Russian government recently passed a program for agricultural development until 2020 in which 600 billion roubles were allocated for investments. This money is supposed to go primarily into sectors with an import share, such as fruit production, milk production or cattle farming. The minister emphasized Russia's cooperation with Germany, for example in plant breeding, training skilled workers, or with regard to the Agricultural Policy Dialogue. However, not one common investment project has been concluded since the trade boycott.
- At the International Green Week 2015, Russia was represented for the 21st time by 177 enterprises from 17 regions. The minister also reacted to the current conflict by referring to Russia's import embargo as a contra sanction in response to the actions of the EU, and as a necessary action by the Russian government corresponding to WTO policies. In Russia, local production is government-funded to increase market share. The country's dependency on seed import remains sensitive because seed breeding is still not fully developed. Russia still depends on seed potatoes from Europe, but the association's declared aim is that production should take place in Russia, thus providing opportunities for foreign direct investments.
- Dr. Walter Stinner from the German Biomass Research Centre (DBFZ) introduced another perspective to the expert panel when he described Russia's vast potential for bio gas plants. Indeed, though the total number of animal production companies in Russia has actually decreased, the larger-sized producers remain. More agricultural waste material is produced in larger stables and processing companies and therefore bio gas plants offer a meaningful utilisation possibility.