Russia and Belarus have agreed to unify their agriculture laws.
In a joint statement, the prime ministers of the two countries, Mikhail Mishustin for
Russia and Roman Golovchenko for Belarus, announced the forging of a common agricultural policy.
“The parties agreed on the convergence of the legislation in the field of agriculture in order to increase the volume of mutual trade in agricultural products, remove administrative barriers, ensure food security, and joint scientific and technological development of agriculture,” the document said.
A meeting of the Council of Ministers of the Union State was held in Minsk on Friday, where the decision on deepening integration was approved on the basis of 28 integration programmes.
In an interview with the Belarus Segodnya newpaper, the Minsk deputy minister of Agriculture and Food Alla Lomakina said: “Given the close ties between Belarusian and Russian agricultural producers and processors, the benefits are obvious.
“The convergence of legislation in the field of the agro-industrial complex will increase the volume of mutual trade, remove administrative barriers, and ensure food security.”
According to Ms Lomakina, in the first seven months of this year food products and agricultural raw materials worth $2.55 billion were supplied to Russia – an increase of 4.6 per cent year-on-year.
Russia, meanwhile, has broken into the Algerian market with its wheat supplies.
Some 30,000 tonnes of wheat were shipped to Algeria from the Black Sea port of Taman earlier this month with a second due shortly.
Russia, the world’s largest wheat exporter, has been attempting to get access to Algeria – which traditionally is supplied by France – for years.
In October last year the Algerian government relaxed its strict regulations on the quality of wheat it will accept.
Commenting on its first export load, Russia said: “The quality characteristics of the grain, which fully meet the country’s requirements for imported products, were confirmed by specialists.”