Following a bi-lateral meeting with Austrian farm leaders this week, IFA President John Bryan said that both organisations have committed to redouble their efforts with their own Governments and at EU level to secure much needed simplification of the new CAP reforms at farm level.
Mr Bryan said that the further greening of the CAP presented unacceptable levels of bureaucracy for EU farm families who are already at their limit of tolerance by ever increasing inspections and penalties.
He said thousands of Austrian farmers found themselves in the same difficult position relating to clawbacks due to disallowance of eligible land by EU Auditors. “Governments will have to fight back in Brussels. If the EU want to disallow parcels of land that were eligible in the past, then they should allow farmers to recalculate the SFP payment over their remaining eligible area rather than imposing retrospective penalties.”
John Bryan said, “In relation to the implementation of the CAP, Austrian farmers had decided to flatten payments by 2019 and use a co-efficient in the alpine regions. Similar to Ireland, farmers are debating what flexibilities should be used at national level. However what’s clear is that an element of coupling will be pursued and that like Ireland strong national funding for rural development is critical”.
Following a meeting tomorrow with Minister Coveney yesterday, John Bryan reiterated his call for an immediate commitment from the Government on 50:50 co-financing of Pillar II with national top ups to support vulnerable sectors.