Apostolou: 12,000 farmers to pay back illegal ‘Hatzigakis’ subsidies
The Minister of Agricultural Development Evangelos Apostolou announced that a joint ministerial decision is being prepared, in order to claim back the illegal subsidies to farmers granted by former Minister Sotiris Hatzigakis in 2009.
These state subsidies, which are worth 421 million euros, have been found to be illegal by the European Courts. These specific subsidies concerned 725,000 farmers, with about 95,000 receiving over 1,000 euros and 12,000 over 5,000 euros.
The government efforts will at first be focused on recovering subsidies over 5,000 euros from the 12,000 beneficiaries. The Minister further explained that negotiations are under way over the other 95,000 farmers.
According to Mr. Apostolou, there are many other similar subsidies that have been given out, such as the “Kontos subsidies” worth 108 million euros that was for 54 grain producer cooperatives and the “Moraitis subsidies” that were granted for the debts of cooperatives worth over 500 million euros.
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