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European state to redirect space funds for potatoes

Belarus has decided a storage facility matters more than survey satellites

The government of Belarus has decided to pay for a new potato storage facility from the space exploration fund, according to a decree made public on Thursday.

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The National Academy of Sciences in Minsk has been notified that approximately $670,000 in funds for a planetary survey network has been reassigned to the agricultural program, according to the decree. 

The remote surveying project was supposed to be spearheaded by the state enterprise ‘Geoinformation Systems’ and involve collaboration with Russia, Kazakhstan, India, Venezuela, Vietnam and other countries to create a network of satellites. It was the flagship space project for the former Soviet republic.

Minsk has apparently decided to prioritize expanding the storage at the Tolochin cannery in the east of Belarus, which produces wine, starch and pre-cut french fries, among other things. The new facility will be built under the 2021-2025 state program for agriculture development, and will cost an estimated $720,000. It is supposed to have the capacity to store 20,000 tons of potatoes.

Belarus produces over five million tons of potatoes a year, more than any other crop.

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December 30, 2023 at 04:32AM
RT

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