NEWS

Private sector to access farmers’ insurance system

TANIA GEORGIOPOULOU

TAGS: Agriculture

Changes will be introduced to the legislative framework governing the operation of the Greek Agricultural Insurance Organization (ELGA) to allow private companies access to the sector’s insurance system, according to Agriculture and Food Minister Makis Voridis.

Addressing the 6th Panhellenic Congress on the Development of Greek Agriculture organized by the Greek farmers’ association Gaia Epicheirein in Athens on Friday, Voridis said he is determined to implement changes to ensure that ELGA is “a fair and effective compensation organization for all farmers.”

“It is not a mechanism of social solidarity,” he said, adding that two large German and French insurance companies as well as several Greek ones “have expressed interest.”

The role of his ministry and the state, he said, is to create the appropriate conditions for growth, which however will be the job of the producers themselves. A case in point, he said, was the government’s success in securing the exemption of Greek olive oil and edible olives from US tariffs.

“This means that Greek olive oil currently has a big comparative advantage over Spanish oil, which will be taxed 1 billion euros in duties,” he noted.

“Now you have to do your job, too,” he added, by promoting Greek olive oil through standardization and quality. “The state can’t do everything,” he concluded.

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