Cyprus wants the extraordinary Agriculture and Fisheries Council meeting to discuss measures on how to deal with Russia’s ban on EU food products, to take place sooner than on September 5.
Agriculture Minister Nicos Kouyialis said that any decision to compensate farmers or grant other financial support can be taken only by the Council of Ministers.
He added that the impact on Cypriot products from the embargo is estimated at 13 mln euros, mainly on citrus exports, but still less compared to other southern European countries.
On the lack of a firm decision by EU experts in Brussels last week, Kouyialis said that the main problem was in dealing with fruit crops, like peaches, apples and pears. He said that Cyprus produces mainly citrus fruits, which are exported later, in November. This, he added, limits the financial damage, while it allows time for Nicosia to search for alternative markets.
On the contrary, he said that the impact on vegetables and fisheries is greater, but affects fewer export quantities from Cyprus.
Asked about the extraordinary Council of Ministers, Kouyialis said the Italian EU Presidency was trying to schedule the date, possibly on September 5, but that “we and other countries ask for this Council to take place the soonest possible”.
Finally, he referred to the possible disbursement of aid from the EU emergency fund – worth 400 mln euros – noting that such a decision can be taken only with the consent of EU Ministers.
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