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Russian Minister of Agriculture, Alexander Tkachev:

"In five years, Russia will be self-sufficient in tomatoes"

Russia will eliminate the shortage of tomatoes on its domestic markets within four to five years. This was according to what the Minister of Agriculture, Alexander Tkachev, said in an interview on Friday. Morocco says their export volumes to Russia is growing, and claims to be that country's most important tomato supplier.

"We have laid the basis for 50 greenhouses with an investment programme", says the Minister. "In four to five years, there will no longer be a shortage." According to statistics, production has remained stable. The country is also working on having a complete domestic supply of apples, pears and grapes within the same time frame. The acreage used for these crops is steadily increasing.

In Morocco, Russia has become the most important export market for agricultural products. Russia has a share of 97% of the export stream. This is according to figures published by the Moroccan Ministry. "In 2016, Morocco exported 351,000 tonnes of agricultural products to Russia. In addition, last year the kingdom became this country's most important tomato supplier", says the Minister. Citrus also forms a large part of the export volumes. The relationship between the two countries has strengthen in recent years.

In Armenia, authorities have yet to receive new requirements from the Russian phytosanitary service. Some time ago, stricter criteria was set for, among others, Armenian imports. The number of exports from this country grew rapidly, causing the Russian service to suspect the Armenians of shipping boycotted products. Armenia has pointed out that they have adhered to all Russia's demands.
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