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Russian farming will boost exports and replace imports

Friday, August 30, 2019

Subject

Russia's farming sector.

Significance

Russian agriculture is thriving because of government import restrictions that have greatly reduced foreign competition and encouraged farmers to increase and diversify production. An import-substitution programme has been successful, particularly for vegetables. Meanwhile, the export-oriented grain sector continues to shine, achieving record harvest levels. Any annual dip results from seasonal weather variables, not sectoral productivity.

Impacts

  • The protectionist argument may have been won for farming but this does not make it valid for other industries.
  • Rising pork production is at risk from African swine fever, with a reported outbreak in the Russian Far East in August.
  • A plan to issue electronic food coupons to poor people has been repeatedly delayed since 2017 and will now happen after 2020.
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