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EC approves aid for Lithuanian poultry sector hit by covid

Lithuania has been given the green light from the European Commission to issue state support to poultry and egg producers that have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Around 25 producers in the Baltic State are expected to receive a share of € 20 million after the Commission agreed that the Lithuanian scheme will compensate damages that are directly linked to the coronavirus outbreak.

It is good news for the Baltic State and marks a change in fortune for the poultry sector. Photo: Henk Riswick
It is good news for the Baltic State and marks a change in fortune for the poultry sector. Photo: Henk Riswick

The Commission said that the measure was proportionate, as the envisaged compensation did not exceed what was necessary to restore the damage done, adding that “the scheme was in line with EU State aid rules.”

Several MEP’s on the European Parliament Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development have been calling for aid for the poultry and veal sectors due to the effects of the coronavirus crisis.

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But while the Commission has activated private storage aid for beef, it has said it has no plans to extend the measure to veal and poultry. Meanwhile, the Serbian meat industry is facing collapse because it cannot sell poultry, pork and beef after exports stopped and hotels and restaurants closed down because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Zoran Matijevic, owner of the Matijevic Meat Industry, told the Beta news agency that demand for meat on the Serbian market was low with poultry meat prices now being 20% lower than its costs. Matijevic: “Producers are facing a huge problem.”