/ Bulgaria’s agricultural trade with China and the countries of Central and Eastern Europe reaches $ 2 billion a year

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The Bulgarian Minister of Agriculture, Food and Forestry Rumen Porozhanov participates in the 12th Economic Cooperation Forum between China and CEE in Slovenia

The Minister of Agriculture, Food and Forestry Roumen Porozhanov participated in the Twelfth Forum on Agro-Trade and Economic Cooperation between China and the countries of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE), held in Slovenia. At a conference at the Brdo Convention Center on the importance of food chains locally and globally, he said that globalization and quality-based competition are significantly changing the agri-food system and the role of small producers in it. Minister Porozhanov stressed that for the development of the food industry the Bulgarian government supports and encourages the introduction of quality standards. He reminded that great attention was paid to the achievement of the European standards for safety and quality in meat and dairy products, but at the same time, the supply of traditional Bulgarian food was successfully developed with various initiatives. The use of local raw materials as well as their processing to achieve higher value-added products available on the international markets is encouraged. Minister Porozhanov also paid attention to increasing the health risks of spreading diseases in the globalization of trade in agricultural products. This increases the risk of external shocks in supply and demand and shows that risk management is important for the further sustainable development of international trade.

In his speech, the Bulgarian minister emphasized the importance of trade in agricultural commodities with the countries participating in the 16+1 Initiative between China and CEE. In the last 3 years, the turnover with these countries is worth about $ 2 billion annually, which is 26-27% of the total agricultural trade in Bulgaria. A positive example is the establishment of the Association for the Promotion of Agricultural Cooperation between China and Central and Eastern European Countries, which started operating in Bulgaria on June 26, 2015. Its functions include providing up-to-date information on trade and agricultural exhibitions and supporting effective business contacts. During the 12th Agroforum, a memorandum was signed to deepen cooperation in agriculture between China and the countries of Central and Eastern Europe.

In Slovenia, Minister Porozhanov held bilateral meetings with the Ministers of Agriculture and Rural Affairs of China, Slovenia and Poland – Han Changfu, Dejan Zidan and Krzysztof Jurgiel. He also visited the Bulgarian booth at the 55th International Agriculture and Food Fair – AGRA in Gornja Radgona.