7 July 2000
Ukraine president halts grain market

FARMERS in the Ukraine have been hit by a new presidential decree that prevents them from buying and selling grain on the open market, reports the Financial Times.

President Leonid Kuchma has introduced a new system under which farmers will be forced to sell their grain to the State in the autumn and then buy it back later in the year, reports the paper.

Producers will be paid a market rate for their grain, which they will buy back at the same price plus storage costs.

They will then be able to resell the grain.

The presidents administration has said the measure is needed to make sure farmers sell in the spring so they can earn a higher profit, says the paper.

But farmers are unhappy with the new arrangement.

Ivan Tomych, head of the Ukrainian Farmers Association is quoted as saying; “If a state monopoly is put in charge, its obvious that it will cheat the farmers.

“It will never offer good prices [for the grain].”

  • Financial Times page 34