The European Commission has approved an aid program for Poland worth some €435.4 million (PLN 2 billion) to support the wheat sector. The goal of the program is to provide liquidity to wheat producers affected by the geopolitical crisis, particularly the massive grain imports from Ukraine, which have strongly affected the domestic market.
The aid program was approved under the Interim Framework for State Support in Crisis and Transition, adopted by the EC on March 9, 2023. It is intended to provide assistance to sectors that are key to the green transition and to reducing dependence on fuels. In its justification, the EC said that the Polish aid program complies with the conditions set forth in the Temporary Crisis Framework (for more information, see a previous issue ofWater Matters, according to which aid cannot exceed 250,000. euros per beneficiary and will be awarded no later than December 31, 2023. The EC concluded that this aid program is necessary, appropriate and proportionate to address the serious disturbance in the member state’s economy, and approved the granting of funds on this basis.
Aid program for wheat producers – detailed information
Under the program, farmers will be able to apply for assistance in the form of direct subsidies. According to the website of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, those who submit invoices for the sale of wheat between April 15 and June 30, 2023 will be able to apply for support. According to the regulations, the rate of aid is proposed to be from April 15 to May 14, 2023. PLN 2200 per hectare of cultivated area, while for farmers who sell wheat from May 15 to June 30, 2023. The aid rate is to be PLN 3025 per hectare of crop area. The amount of support is the product of this rate and the size of the area sown to wheat:
- covered by direct support for 2022. and reduced by the area of crops to which financing has already been provided;
- which is the quotient of the number of tons of wheat resulting from VAT invoices confirming the sale and the average yield for Poland, or 5.5 tons.
The call for proposals will be conducted from June 1 to July 15, 2023. By the Agency for the Restructuring and Modernization of Agriculture. The aid program will be for farmers, up to the first 300 hectares of wheat crops. Detailed information on the current stage of work on the draft regulation aimed at activating aid for wheat producers can be found on the website of the Government Legislation Center.