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Romania Table of Contents



Romanian agriculture in the late 1980s remained the most centralized in Comecon. A complicated and constantly changing network of overlapping state and party agricultural bureaucracies had evolved over the previous four decades. The Ministry of Agriculture set production targets and oversaw the distribution of resources among the judete. It became the frequent target of Ceausescu's ire and received much of the blame for agriculture's persistent problems. In 1978 the Congress of the Higher Councils of Socialist Agricultural Units and of the Whole Peasantry and its permanent bureau, the National Agricultural Board, were established. The apparent purpose of the new body was to approve and thereby legitimize the PCR's policy directives. The following year a joint party and state agricultural policy-making body was established--the National Council For Agriculture, Food Industry, Forestry, and Water Management. Meeting as frequently as four times a year in plenary session, the council provided a forum for Ceausescu to address thousands of agricultural specialists and functionaries.

In 1979 pursuant to the guidelines of the New Economic and Financial Mechanism enacted the previous year, a network of agroindustrial councils was set up to coordinate the activities of as many as five state and cooperative farms in an area served by a single state machinery station. A Stalinist holdover abandoned in the rest of Eastern Europe, these stations controlled access to tractors and other heavy equipment. In the 1980s the agroindustrial councils gained additional powers to coordinate agricultural production, food processing, research, and agricultural training. After 1980 judet and village people's councils bore responsibility for fulfilling agricultural production targets set in Bucharest. In each judet a General Directorate for Agriculture and Food Industry made assignments to individual state and cooperative farms.

Data as of July 1989