June 11, 2010 - The ruling center-right Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria (GERB) party warned Thursday, June 10th they can reconsider giving tobacco growers BGN 116 M in State subsidies if the latter begin mass protests.
This statement was made by the Chair of the Parliamentary Agriculture Committee, Desislava Taneva, who was adamant the tobacco growers' demands for BGN 170 M are absurd and, most likely, politically motivated. Agriculture Minister, Miroslav Naydenov, further asked the opposition to act with more responsibility and prevent protests.
January 18, 2010 - Bulgaria - European Commission authorizes payment to tobacco producers for 2009 crop..;
December 23, 2009 - Bulgaria - government, tobacco growers reach subsidy agreement...
Tobacco growers, who in Bulgaria are mostly from ethnic Turkish background, announced a day earlier that BGN 116 M would not be enough to subsidize their production; they need at least BGN 170 M, and warned about mass protests, even hunger strike.
The opposition ethnic Turkish party Movement for Rights and Freedoms (DPS) firmly denies being behind the farmers' discontent. They say the amount of BGN 116 M is really the maximum, but the updated budget does not list it as funding to be given precisely to tobacco growers.
IMAGE: The bulgarian government and the protesting tobacco workers have come to an agreement over subsidies, and all organized protests are to be ended. Photo by BGNES, 12/22/2009..
Reference: Bulgaria's GERB Issues Ultimatum for Tobacco Growers' Protests, Novinite.com (Sofia News Agency), 6/10/2010.
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