Anger as re­view into farm cash de­layed

The Sunday Post (Newcastle) - - NEWS -

A re­view into how EU sub­si­dies are dis­trib­uted by the UK Gov­ern­ment to Scot­tish hill farm­ers has been de­layed.

Around £190 mil­lion worth of pay­ments from Brus­sels has been paid to farm­ers around the UK, with £30m of that com­ing to Scot­land.

Farm­ers and Scot­tish Ru­ral Econ­omy Sec­re­tary Fer­gus Ewing ar­gue that the full £190m should have come to Scot­land un­der the com­plex EU fund­ing model.

Now an in­de­pen­dent re­view into the pay­ments, an­nounced by UK En­vi­ron­ment Sec­re­tary Michael Gove last year, has been de­layed.

Mr Ewing said: “This de­lay is com­pletely un­ac­cept­able.

“Scot­tish hill farm­ers are owed £160 mil­lion, which the UK Gov­ern­ment has re­peat­edly ig­nored.

“I have been clear through­out that the money was earned in Scot­land, and quite frankly should be re­turned to Scot­land.”

A UK Gov­ern­ment spokes­woman said: “We are in dis­cus­sion with HM Trea­sury about this re­view.

“It is es­sen­tial that it is con­sid­ered along­side wider fund­ing im­pli­ca­tions in Scot­land, Wales and North­ern Ire­land as we leave the EU.”

She said farm­ing sup­port al­lo­ca­tions have been guar­an­teed in cash terms un­til 2022.

Fer­gus Ewing

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