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Russian embargo losses may exceed $6.7 million

Staff writer |
Direct losses to Bulgaria's economy from the Russian embargo on goods range from BGN 5 to 10 million ($3.4 to 6.7 million).

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This figure does not even include indirect losses, caretaker minister of agriculture and food Vasil Grudev told reporters.

"Our producers suffer from illegal imports of fruit, vegetables, dairy and meat products every year. This year the Russian embargo exacerbated the situation," Grudev said.

There is no way to limit import on an open market, but at least measures against illegal import can be taken. The ministry will exercise greater control over import of agricultural goods, especially fruit and vegetables and also enhance border cross point control. Experts will inspect vehicles at the borders and unloading sites.

No decision has been made on compensation of producers, Grudev added.

So-called "flash in the pan" suppliers have become very common – companies that deliver goods and disappear after 2-3 weeks, only to be replaced by others like this, said alarmed finance minister Rumen Porozhanov.

Supplies of fruit, vegetables and animal products from Poland and Greece are on the rise.

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