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Moldovan Farmers Demand Subsidies, Protest Tax Hike

  • RFE/RL's Moldovan Service

CHISINAU -- Hundreds of Moldovan farmers protested on March 27, demanding increases in state subsidies and condemning the government's plan to increase the VAT tax on farm products from 8 percent to 20 percent.

The protesters drove brought hundreds of tractors and other farm vehicles to the sides of major roads in the former Soviet republic, one of Europe's poorest countries.

They threatened to block roads in future if their problems are not addressed.

The protesters' demands also included compensation for gasoline price increases, and cheaper bank loans for farmers.

Representatives of Moldova's three major farmers' associations met with Prime Minister Chiril Gaburici on March 26.

The president of Uniagroprotect Farmers' Association, Alexandru Sulsari, told RFE/RL after the meeting that he was dissatisfied with the talks.

He said Gaburici made promises but outlined no concrete steps to meet the farmers' demands.

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