President Nicos Anastasiades promised potato farmers on Wednesday that the government would support them and they should be “absolutely sure of that”.
The president was in Xylofagou to open a new citizens service centre in the Famagusta district village and local farmers had brought their tractors in advance to protest.
Anastasiades was met by a group of the farmer when he arrived and spoke with them, saying he was “always at their side”.
When asked by journalists, about the issues being faced by the farmers due to high cost of fertiliser and fuel, the president said: “It is not only potato producers, but because I am in the region and of course I have a special sensitivity… we are always and will remain on the side of the agricultural world.”
“Therefore, we will soon be at the presidential palace to see what it is that we can contribute to. We have never been indifferent to the problems faced by our rural compatriots,” he added.
The potato farmers have been demanding a meeting with the president, saying they can no longer continue planting due to the high cost.
“Potato farmers have no money to subsidise the product since the cost cannot be passed on to the consumer,” they said. “Farmers can no longer afford to work,” president of the organising committee of potato farmers Andreas Karyos said.
On Monday, agricultural organisations met MPs to discuss the problem and suggest measures that can be taken to solve it.
They also had had a meeting with the agriculture minister and were not satisfied with the monetary compensation offered.