Union seeks fair­ness on CAP cash

The Oban Times - - Farming -

NFU Scot­land has se­cured com­mit­ment from Sec­re­tary of State for Scot­land, David Mun­dell, to or­gan­ise a meet­ing with Defra Farm­ing Min­is­ter Ge­orge Eus­tice over the al­lo­ca­tion of Com­mon Agri­cul­tural Pol­icy (CAP) con­ver­gence money.

Since 2013, NFU Scot­land has pressed for move­ment on the al­lo­ca­tion of the UK’s €230 mil­lion con­ver­gence div­i­dend from the Euro­pean Union (EU). Scot­land, with the third low­est pil­lar 1 (di­rect sup­port) pay­ment rate per hectare in the EU, was the rea­son why the UK re­ceived this div­i­dend due to Scot­land’s be­low av­er­age area pay­ment rates.

The UK gov­ern­ment, how­ever, chose to share this across the whole of the UK on the ba­sis of his­toric al­lo­ca­tions.

While it is not cer­tain that a fully con­verged UK area-based pay­ment would have meant all the UK div­i­dend would have been al­lo­cated to Scot­land, it is cer­tain that it would have been far more than Scot­land’s his­toric 16.3 per cent share.

A del­e­ga­tion from NFU Scot­land ear­lier this month met MPs, amongst them David Mun­dell, to lobby for move­ment on the con­ver­gence is­sue.

Mr Mun­dell agreed to set up a meet­ing be­tween NFU Scot­land and Ge­orge Eus­tice to dis­cuss the mat­ter.

NFU Scot­land Pres­i­dent Allan Bowie said: ‘ The union be­lieves that a 2016 re­view can speed up the process of re-al­lo­cat­ing the con­ver­gence div­i­dend and put Scot­tish farm­ing in a stronger place ahead of the next CAP, which starts in 2020.

‘ Work is now in progress to get meet­ings set up in Scot­land in Oc­to­ber to main­tain the mo­men­tum on this vi­tal is­sue.

‘NFU Scot­land has pre­vi­ously called on the UK gov­ern­ment to de­liver on the com­mit­ments made by three Defra min­is­ters to hold a re­view of con­ver­gence in 2016, with a view to there­after move to sim­i­lar pay­ments for sim­i­lar land types across the UK as soon as pos­si­ble.

‘Now is the time for the UK gov­ern­ment to de­liver on its prom­ises.’

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.