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February 11, 2018 10:00 am | FILED UNDER: business

2017 Agricultural Trade Gap Highest Since 2011

By ČTK

Prague, Feb 11 (CTK) – Last year’s agricultural trade deficit at Kc30.8bn was the worst since 2011 and Kc7.7bn higher than in 2016, the Agricultural Association said, referring to data from the Czech Statistical Office (CSU).

 

Czech imports of agricultural products grew by some Kc2.8bn to Kc227.5bn, while Czech agricultural exports dropped by Kc4.9bn.

 

“A record amount of meat for Kc28bn was imported to the Czech Republic last year, four times more that when our country entered the EU. Domestic animal production was cut accordingly,” the association said.

 

The Czech Republic lacks processing capacity and agricultural workers, the association’s chairman Martin Pycha told CTK.

 

The Czech Republic imports pork from Germany and Poland, he added.

 

“The trade deficit in meat deteriorated by almost Kc2bn against 2016, this commodity keeps the highest trade deficit of all agricultural commodity groups,” Pycha remarked.

 

The Agrarian Chamber said that the foreign trade development offers the exact picture of Czech production, or more precisely the lack of it.

 

This trend has not been changed despite all efforts, just the opposite, the structure of import is deteriorating as regards production with higher value added, said the chamber’s spokesman Jiri Felcarek.

 

Prevention of imports of animal products for dumping prices, for example from Poland and Germany, should be the first step for improving the situation, Pycha recommended.

 

Support for farmers in EU countries also needs to be balanced. Higher support for farmers in sales cooperatives should be the next step. They could have tax reliefs and advantages in subsidy programmes.

 

The Czech state is also unable to improve conditions for bringing workers from abroad, for example for seasonal work in the orchards, Pycha said.

 

Lack of processing capacity is yet another problem. The Czech Republic exports commodities like milk and cattle and imports final products like meat and cheeses, he added.

 

Agricultural foreign trade:

 

year

export (Kc bn)

import (Kc bn))

deficit/surplus (Kc bn)

1993 CR’s setup

32.276

31.497

0.779

1995

35.596

47.636

-12.040

1996

32.555

54.353

-21.798

1999

39.757

60.484

-20.727

2000

47.729

65.011

-17.282

2001

49.411

69.228

-19.817

2002

45.174

69.040

-23.866

2003

48.805

74.259

-25.455

2004 CR’s EU entry

61.526

93.822

-32.295

2005

78.520

103.522

-25.003

2006

78.542

112.737

-34.195

2007

96.880

129.333

-32.453

2008

106.931

131.048

-24.117

2009

101.708

133.735

-32.027

2010

105.364

140.008

-34.644

2011 worst results in history

120.381

156.674

-36.293

2012 biggest yr/yr improvement

148.309

173.026

-24.717

2013

160.594

184.674

-24.080

2014

180.247

199.909

-19.662

2015

201.383

220.686

-19.303

2016

201.592

224.676

-23.084

2017

196.741

227.493

-30.752

 

Source: Agricultural Association based on CSU data

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