Tuesday, 23 February 2016

49th Sitting of the Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management Committee

At the sitting held on 23 February, the members of the Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management Committee deliberated on the current situation concerning livestock breeding and the buyout price of pigs.

Following the discussion the Committee members had with representatives of the Ministry of Agriculture and Environmental Protection and members of the Serbian Chamber of Commerce, the Committee adopted a conclusion proposal it sent to the Government recommending to keep and possibly raise the levies on pork, and place the money gained in this manner into domestic livestock breeding and toward raising its competitiveness. The Committee recommends, as a production and price maintenance measure, introducing quarterly cold storage subsidies for interested abattoirs for the purchase of 10 to 15 thousand fatlings for 15 to 20 RSD a kilo. This measure would help maintain the stability of prices and the market and also raise VAT income for the state. The Committee also suggested inquiring into the possible abolishment of customs levies on beef.

The Committee also discussed launching an initiative to reprogram the farmers’ health insurance debts, and came to a conclusion to submit to the Government of the Republic of Serbia and appropriate procedures regarding the farmers’ pension and disability insurance contributions. The Committee decided to propose that the Government make a decision on the farmers’ health insurance contributions and reprogram them to 5 years, with an interest write-off for the original paid off debt, and have them gain the right to extend the validity of their health insurance booklets and to medical treatment though their ongoing quarterly payments for last year. Similarly, the Committee proposed that the amendment of relevant regulations would regulate the farmers’ pension and disability insurance debts.

The Committee also discussed stimulations for agricultural production and decided to discuss the possibility of a more regular and better way to allocate the stimulation packages, and if possible increase the funds in the agrarian budget.

The sitting was chaired by Committee Chairman Marijan Risticevic and attended by Committee members Velimir Stanojevic, Jovan Markovic, Zarko Bogatinovic, Miodrag Nikolic, Zoran Antic and Arpad Fremond, and deputy members Miroslav Marinkovic, Miroljub Stankovic, Dejan Nektarijevic, Zeljko Susec, Mladen Lukic, Vladan Milosevic and Nadica Nikolic Tanasijevic.

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