ArmInfo. Armenian Agriculture Ministry protects the interests of all but the farmer. Such opinion was expressed by the chairman of the Agrarian-Peasant Union of Armenia, Hrachya Berberyan, during the press conference on June 14, speaking about the position of the department, connected with the damage caused to the agricultural lands of the Armavir district by a strong hail.
"I do not understand how far the minds of officials can be limited, to not understand in 15 years that anti- hail settings are not an effective tool! Limitations, too, should be the limit! Instead of following the interests of farmers, the Deputy Minister of Agriculture justifies the effectiveness of these installations," he stated. In this regard, the head of the Union noted that under the ex-minister Serzh Karapetyan an agreement was reached to suspend the acquisition of anti-hail stops because of their inefficiency, however, orders were restored again.
Answering the question of ArmInfo. Berberyan stressed that farmers in 10 villages of Armavir district lost their crops totally . "This area can be confidently announced a disaster zone," he said. In connection with the deplorable situation for farmers, the expert noted that in this case, it is necessary to "freeze" agricultural loans, and not to lend payments on them, as was done a year earlier. His proposal expert based on the resulting insolvency of farmers from the current situation. According to the head of the Union, in this regard, the Government should create a certain credit component for establishing a network protection system with a maturity of up to 10-15 years, which provides 100% protection of farmland, which will attract the participants of the Armenian insurance market.
He stressed that responsible persons in Agriculture department announced about the reduction of the production extents for 17.5%. However, according to the Union's calculations, the agricultural sector showed a 40% decline even before the hail damage. Concerning the forecasts of the export of Armenian agricultural products, Berberyan noted that the volumes will be significantly reduced, even if the official data will be indicative of the opposite.
Earlier it was informed about the formation of working group in Armenia on processing preliminary option of pilot implementation program of newest anti hail systems of Russian production. Antigrad company implemented appropriate researches due to the request of Armenian MES, and presented the tools and options of Armenian hail preventing systems. The matter concerns first to the possibility of implementation of automated missile technologies to decrease the possible damage of agricultural plants. According to preliminary data, every year Armenian agriculture faces losses like 5-6% of the harvest because of hail rains. Prime Minister Karen Karapetyan instructed MES and Armenian Agricultural Ministry to develop effective approaches in respect to hail prevention.