The Malta Independent 5 December 2020, Saturday

€1.5 million subsidy scheme to benefit farmers to compensate for losses due to pandemic

Giulia Magri Friday, 2 October 2020, 16:03 Last update: about 3 months ago

Around 4,800 farmers are to benefit from a direct subsidy of €1.5 million to compensate for the losses they sustained due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“The work of our local farmers is irreplaceable, and as we have noted the pandemic has affected a number of sectors, including agriculture sector too,” said Economy Minister Silvio Schembri who announced the scheme alongside Agriculture Minister Anton Refalo on Friday.

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The scheme is part of the economic regeneration plan which the government announced back in June.

“Farmers were directly impacted by the pandemic, as our airport closed, and restaurants that preferred local fresh products also closed, the demand of farmers decreased drastically,” explained Schembri. He said that many families also reduced consuming and buying fresh products, as they reduced going out to the super market and they resorted to buying food products which last longer.

The government has decided to provide €1.5 million to help compensate all farmers registered in Malta. “We have generations of farmers in Malta and Gozo and they all carry a priority to the government.”

The scheme will be open for applications until 31 October 2020 and will be applicable until 18 December of this year.

Agriculture Minister Refalo highlighted that the scheme is extremely important for farmers and to push for more local products to be purchased. “These farmers are entitled to this aid, and it brings justice to the Maltese and Gozitan farmers.” He said that this is the first step to investing more in the future of agriculture and farmers in Malta and those farmers must be more innovative and understanding of how produce fresher products which then can be consumed both locally and exported.

 

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