The theme of the financial support mechanisms for the Romanian agriculture, in its capacity as a Member State since 2007, is very important in the effort our country to become competitive on the European agricultural market. The particularities of the Romanian agriculture are almost the same as in the pre-accession (divided agricultural structures, low technical and economic yields, old technical equipment, etc.), and the main question is whether the Community support mechanisms are leading to the increasing of the performances of the Romanian agricultural exploitations or are, still, measures for mere survival of them on the market.
Looking at the level of the Romanian agriculture, the funds allocated starting with the year 2002 have not achieved their goal. The majority of the subsidies were guided to the big exploitations and had the role of social protection for millions of subsistence exploitations. The problems that rose during time about the payment of subsidies to the Romanian agriculture were many: the subvention for raw matter raised the prices; the subvention of interests for equipment purchasing were limited and low; the subvention on the product was an advantage for the big producers; the support for every ha for those who had more than 5 ha had a social role, etc.. Apart from this, the lack of viable ways for the market making had the impact of a breakdown in the culture basins for some products (tobacco, sugar beets) and the rise of auto consumption.
In the pre-accession period the support mechanisms were made out of: direct support from the state budget for producers with less than 5 ha; support for the production of market production; vouchers from the state budget for input (seeds, chemical fertilizers, pesticides, oil); buying; payment schemes on animal species; the “Farmer” Programme establishment, etc.. The most important thing is that the majority of the measures were orientated to the formation of the commercial and family farms, yet all the measures to maintain the production capacity, culture creation, and support for the production of market production had no clear targets regarding productivity and competition, which lead to failure in achieving the restructuration of the Romanian agriculture.
Since the year 2007 we apply the mechanisms of support of the European Union, granted by Pillar I and Pillar II. The market measures and the support for rural development have become the main elements of support for the agriculture. After seven year of implementation, the agriculture in Romania has yet acute structural problems. The reduced dimensions of the exploitations prevent their development, without any support from national level policies, having difficulties in accessing credits. Since the majority of the agricultural exploitation are supporting themselves through the diversity of activities and with the help of the subsidies, we cannot speak of a sustainable economic growth, which is reflected in the high expenditures for the imports of food and in the high percentage of the imported food in the food consumption at the national level. We still have difficulties in the creation of middle size family, exploitations, which should be the backbone of the commercial sector of agriculture, being this way closer to the European Union exploitation structures. In this context, the theme of agricultural support mechanisms is a complex one, the quantification of the effects of these mechanisms on agriculture being very difficult.
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by Aurelia-Ioana Brînaru