Only in one of the pilot regions – Kaluga oblast – the mechanism for stimulation of outpatient’s clinics to increase treatment efficiency of the population, registered with them, and to reduce the frequency of addressing to other institutions for health care services. The stimulation of the primary health care institutions for the decrease of figures of hospitalization and emergency calls for the population registered at the institution, which characterizes the full-swing mechanism of partial funds holding. It should be noted that this mechanism was successfully applied in 90-ies in some regions of the country, in particular, in Samara and Kaluga oblasts (within the framework of the World Bank project), but was further changed for simple financing of outpatients’ clinics by the number of calls.
Reforms in labor remuneration takes place in 13 regions. In all of them additional payments for medical workers are introduced that are defined basing on their work’s efficiency figures. In seven regions the Single Tariffs Net is replaced in 2007 by independently developed branch systems of medical workers’ labor remuneration. In Vologda and Samara oblasts this procedure was introduced in 2008.
Personified accounting of the health care rendered is being applied in 18 regions.
The course of the pilot project fulfillment testified the correct choice of the directions of the health care financing mechanisms testing. The project stimulated the subjects of the Russian Federation to suggest and test initiative innovations in the health care financing mechanisms. These are undoubtedly first positive results of its fulfillment.
At the same time when the project tasks were set there were no distinct questions formulated, for which the experiment should find answers, no alternative solutions were formed, which should be tested experimentally. In fact the following is tested in the course of experiments: suggested by regions variants of singlechannel financing organization, ways to build-up tariffs in Compulsory Health Insurance system, holding of funds at the primary health care, system of health care employees labor remuneration, personified accounting of health care volumes and the obstacles arising are found out. Actually the first half of the year of experiment conduction in the regions was occupied with the preliminary work and practical changes started in January 2008. The short period of project’s fulfillment complicates the estimation of the innovations’ influence on the efficiency of territorial health care systems operation. It is most likely that the project will be prolonged by the end of 2008, but even then the results of its conduction will not provide sufficient information to make well-grounded decisions on the design of a new effective health care model. Solution of these tasks will require the continuation of work on testing the various mechanisms and a more definite position of the federal center as to the content of the alternatives tested.
Preliminary results of implementing the National project “Development of the agrifood sector” R.Yanbykh, G.Rodionova The National project “Development of the agrifood sector” is completed. The Ministry of Agriculture reported its results and outlined the guidelines of the State program of support to agriculture and regulation of agricultural and food markets of the RF constituent members in 2008-2012. Below we examine the preliminary results of the National project and problems of the State program’s implementation.
The surge of world prices for food44 has once again drawn the attention of experts to the situation in and prospects for development of the domestic agriculture. At its extended collegium at the end of March the RF Ministry of Agriculture presented a report on the agrifood sector’s performance in 2007, the outcomes of the priority National project “Development of the agrifood sector” and measures for implementing the 5-year State program of support to agriculture and regulation of agricultural and food markets in 20082012.
It was stated that in 2007 agricultural and food production stabilized and became more efficient although its growth slowed down. According to Rosstat’s preliminary data last year the gross agricultural output in comparable prices increased by 3.3% as compared with 2006, crop output – by 2%, livestock output – by 4.8%.
Grain remains the primary export-oriented item of the domestic crop production. The gross output of grain in 2007 amounted to 81.8 million tons (weight after primary processing) – the highest indicator in the last years. Grain exports increased up to 16.4 million tons (including 14.5 million tons of wheat) despite active attempts to restrict them because of the rising prices. The share of individual private farms in the production of grain is steadily growing – in 2006 it reached 20% (4.7% in 1995).
Wheat remains the basic grain crop (57%). The structure of grain production varies by years but the general trends are the steady reduction of outputs of rye (from 10% in the 90s to 4% in 2007) and oats (down from 12% to 6%) and the increase of corn output (up from 2 to 5%). Gross output of rice in 2007 amounted to 708.6 thousand tons (weight after primary processing), which is the highest indicator since 1993. The yield has also set a record – 45.1 centners per hectare.
1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 Gross output Exports Source: Data of the RF Ministry of Agriculture.
Commonly referred to as “agflation” (agriculture + inflation) after Jose Rasco and Richard Bernstein from Merrill Lynch. Most experts find that the causes of agflation are continuing urbanization, growth of prices for oil and larger consumption of food items non-traditional for Asian nations in the countries with the largest population (China, India, Indonesia).
Picture 1. Russian Federation: gross output and exports of grain and grain legumes, million tons 2% 4%3% 5% Wheat 6% Barley Oats Corn 57% Rye 23% Other cereals Grain legumes Source: Rosstat.
Picture 2. Structure of grain production by crops, % The outputs of other farm crops fell slightly as compared with 2006 (see Table 1). Flax is an exception: its gross output reached 47.7 thousand tons.
Table Russian Federation: output of basic farm crops in farms of all types, million tons 1990 2000 2006 2007 2007 as % of Grain and grain 116.7 65.5 78.6 81.8 70.legumes Sunflower seeds 3.4 3.9 6.8 5.7 167.Sugar beets 32.3 14.1 30.9 29.0 89.Potatoes 30.8 34.0 38.6 36.6 118.Vegetables 10.3 12.5 15.6 15.5 150.Source: Rosstat.
The official standpoint of the Ministry of agriculture is that the implementation of “Accelerated development of livestock production” - one of the components of the priority National project “Development of the agrifood sector” – has given a new impetus to progress in the Russian livestock production (Table 2).
Table Accomplishment of the basic control target indicators under the “Accelerated development of livestock production” title of the National project 2005 Control target 2007 Actual ac(base indicator, % complishindicator) ment, % Increase of slaughter livestock and poultry output (live weight) as com- pared with 2005, million tons 7.62 107 8.62 113.Increase of milk output as compared with 2005, million tons 30.93 104.5 32.16 104.Stabilization of cattle inventories, million heads 21.44 100 21.5 100.Increase of commercial fish output, million tons 78.3 104 102.1 130.Source: RF Ministry of Agriculture.
One can see that indicators for meat have hardly been attained and the attempt to reverse the downward trend in milk production has failed. Within two years 29.3 billion rubles were allocated to the support of livestock sector, of which 8 billion rubles went to the enlargement of authorized capital of state company “Rosagroleasing”. Although the efficiency of these measures should be estimated not earlier than after years, it’s already clear that the increase of livestock output turns out to be almost “golden”.
Although the total production of meat by farms of all types is increasing (according to Rosstat’s preliminary data – by 8.6%), its consumption grows even faster. Therefore Russia has to buy abroad one third of the required pork, 40% of poultry meat and 35% of beef. In the structure of import the EU countries account for 45% of pork, the US – for 60% of poultry meat, Brazil – for 40% of beef, Ukraine – for 90% of sunflower oil, Belarus – for 90% of dried milk.
According to data of customs statistics in 2007 imports of agricultural and food products amounted to $US 27.6 billion and were 27.9% up as compared with 2006.
The growth of livestock and poultry output in Russia was provided by the continuing increase of poultry meat and pork production (by 16.5% and 10% respectively). Cattle inventories as of January 1, 2008 equaled 21.5 million heads, or 100.3% of the 2005 indicator.
So, the results achieved under the “Accelerated development of livestock production” title turned out to be far below the expected ones. Altogether during the two years of implementing the priority National project “Development of the agrifood sector” 70 facilities were put into operation, reconstructed and modernized in cattle production, 74 new facilities were launched in hog production, 197 facilities – in milk cattle production, 786 milk complexes and farms were reconstructed and modernized.
According to expert opinion of “Rosselkhozbank’s” (Russian Agricultural Bank) specialists the modernization and reconstruction of morally obsolete livestock premises was not worth the expenses – it turned out to be too costly and inefficient. Construction of new facilities seems to be much more promising.
“Facilitation of small-scale farming” component of the National project was the second by the amount of allocated funds (13.75 billion rubles or 28.7% of the total budget). It envisaged partial subsidizing of interest rate on credits to individual private and household farms and support to agricultural consumer cooperatives.
3840 agricultural cooperatives were set up including 740 processing, 1950 procurement, supply and marketing and 1150 credit cooperatives45. According to estimates of the Ministry of Agriculture only 55.7% of them are actually working (i.e. submit annual reports). Credit support to cooperatives within the two years amounted to 6.3 billion rubles (less than 7% of the total amount of credits to smallholder entities) including 5.1 billion rubles granted by “Rosselkhozbank”. The subsidizing of interest rate enabled smallholder entities to get 91.9 billion rubles of credits.
Unfortunately, the implementation of measures to support agricultural cooperation was rather inefficient.
Instead of supporting the already existing cooperatives and developing the system of rural credit cooperation, regional authorities started to hastily create new cooperatives in accordance with plans adopted at the federal level (since the target indicator was the number of cooperatives but not their efficiency). But while agricultural consumer credit cooperatives had a certain decade-long success story, there were only a few agricultural consumer non-credit cooperatives for supply, marketing, processing, etc. by the National project’s start, i.e. there was no experience of their working in modern Russia. Having heard the financial support promise, individual farmers hurried to register credit and non-credit cooperatives46, the more so as local administrations encouraged them. As a result this measure disappointed both the National project’s participants (many cooperatives failed to get credits and subventions due to their insolvency) and the Government that failed to ensure a qualitative leap in the development of agricultural cooperation.
Meanwhile in many countries rural credit cooperation is supported by state as the principal system of providing small rural business with credit resources. For instance, the US Farm Credit System needed more than 40 years (from 1913 to the mid-50s) to get on feet and repay the soft credit granted by the federal budget for the start-up capital. Our neighbors and former colleagues from the socialist camp Moldavia, Bulgaria and Out of the speech of Deputy Minister A.A.Slepnyov at the extended collegium of the RF Ministry of Agriculture “On the agrifood sector performance in 2007, measures for implementing the 5-year State program for agricultural development and regulation of agricultural and food markets in 2008-2012 and on measures to achieve the target indicators for 2008”. – “Rosinformagrotext”, March 25, 2008.
Data of an independent monitoring show that some credit cooperatives were registered in spite of their share capital being only 1000 rubles!! (i.e. their members invested 100 rubles each hoping to get credits to the amount of hundreds of thousand rubles). See Yanbykh R.G. “Development of rural cooperatives” \ Priority national project “Development of the agrifood sector”: guidelines, mechanisms and implementation risks. – Moscow, the All-Russian Institute of Agrarian Problems and Informatics named after A.A.Nikonov. Issue 20 – pp. 255-282.
Ukraine have also found a way to provide national systems of agricultural credit cooperation (associations) with circulating capital on acceptable terms (for this purpose they took grants and credits of the World Bank and the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development). One can hardly find a transition economy where rural credit cooperation is not supported by state.
The principal creditor of agriculture in the framework of the National project was “Rosselkhozbank” (Russian Agricultural Bank) founded in the form of joint-stock company with 100% government share.
Table Rosselkhozbank: structure and amounts of credit support to agriculture in 2006-Types of credits Number Million rubles % Accelerated development of 2551 84070 livestock production Credits to individual private 313240 55904 and household farms Credits to non-credit coopera- 1037 3997 2.tives Credits to credit cooperatives 567 1352 0.Contribution of an associated 78 663 0.member Credits on land mortgage 189 6605 4.TOTAL 317574 152571 Source: data of “Rosselkhozbank”.
Measures for housing young specialists in rural areas (the third component of the National project) envisaged construction or purchase of 1392.9 thousand square meters of affordable dwellings. The actual figure is 1608.2 thousand square meters for over 32 thousand young rural specialists and members of their families.