The resignation of the Romanian Prime Minister on February 6, 2012 led to a Government reshuffle. Stelian Fuia, President of Committee on Agriculture in Chamber of Deputies, was appointed as Minister of Agriculture.
Priorities for agriculture and rural development portfolio
Accelerating the absorption of EU funds remains the top priority. The National Plan for Rural Development has an overall budget of 10 billion euro, of which 8 billion is funded by the European Union through the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development, the balance being covered from the national budget. The total payments made so far reached 3.4 billion Euro, meaning a rate of absorption of 33% during the 2007-2013 period. A target of 43 percent has been set to be reached before October 2012.
Continuing the support for livestock and crop producers and timely disbursement of direct payments to farmers remain among the priorities of the newly appointed minister. Romania has a deficit in terms of irrigation, thus revamping the irrigation systems is on the agenda as well. He also promises an intense participation in the CAP reform debate.
The new Minister is planning to work for reducing the fiscal evasion in agriculture, expanding the cultivated land as well as imposing some penalties for land owners who refuse to cultivate their land.
Thursday February 16, 2012/FAS-USDA/ United States.