The Ukrainian agrarian sector has to transform agriculture from the raw model of production to value added production. This will create new jobs, which will encourage those Ukrainians who went abroad to come back. This was stated by the head of Ukrainian Agri Council Andrii Dykun during the round table "Urgent needs of the Ukrainian agricultural sector for sustainability and recovery".
During the event, organized under the support of the European Union and the World Bank, Andrii Dykun emphasized that Ukraine needs a "Marshall Plan" for the agricultural sector.
"After our victory, we will face a key issue - to return Ukrainians to Ukraine. For this, in addition to security, we need to offer decent work. For this, we have to transform agriculture from the raw model of production to value added production. Therefore, it is time to speak frankly about the Marshall Plan, which will restore the agricultural sector of Ukraine. If everything remains as it is, we will not bring back millions of our people," Andrii Dykun emphasized.
In addition to an effective recovery plan that will enable farmers across the country to plan their future after victory, it is necessary to pay attention to three categories of farmers, Andrii Dykun said.
The first category is those who remained in the occupied territories. In addition to hostilities and problems related to life under occupation, farmers in uncontrolled territory are expected to face pressure from Ukrainian law enforcement officers after liberation.
"According to the current law, the work of agricultural enterprises in the captured territories is automatically considered collaboration. However, you have to work there to feed yourself, your family, and sometimes the whole village. The lack of clear legal norms for business activities in non-controlled territories is a big problem, because our people are scared and are afraid of falling under criminal charges after liberation. The corresponding draft law is already in the parliament, it outlines what can be done in the occupied territories, and what will be considered cooperation with the invaders. It waits for adoption, " says Andrii Dykun, head of the UAC.
According to Andrii Dykun, the second largest category of farmers also suffers from hostilities. The fields of these farms are mostly mined and work on them cannot be resumed due to the lack of sappers of the State Emergency Service.
"Today it is difficult to estimate how many thousands of hectares are contaminated with explosive objects. We understand that the war is going on, the emergency services are working on infrastructure facilities: hospitals, educational institutions, administrative buildings. Agriculture is still in the second place. But we must not forget that this is our economy, and these enterprises must work. Here we need to facilitate the access of private demining companies to work in Ukraine, " Andrii Dykun added.
A third group of farmers suffers from a lack of financing. As a result of hostilities, many enterprises were destroyed or looted. The occupiers took away equipment, spare parts and grain. Agrarians do not have enough funds to start sowing: there are no seeds and fertilizers.
"There are farms that have been completely destroyed. These farmers do not fall under classical lending programs. Instead, their owners and workers know their jobs and can quickly restore the economy. For this, it is necessary to create an international fund that would help restore these enterprises by providing grants. Otherwise, it is difficult to resume work on your own quickly and at a decent level," Andrii Dykun said.Monday, 5 December 2022