IFA Rural Development Chairman Flor McCarthy has urged the Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney to speed up the process for making the submission to the EU Commission on the details of Ireland’s Rural Development Plan, as the process for making submissions has started with some countries ready to make their case.
Speaking from Brussels following a meeting of the EU Advisory Committee on Rural Development, Flor McCarthy said, “With the consultation phase on Ireland’s plan completed, the Minister must now move to the details stage with the plan being submitted at the earliest possible date to the EU Commission”.
With some member states and regional plans out of a total of 114 ready to be submitted, EU Commission officials have told IFA that schemes can be implemented later in the year provided there is sufficient time to examine each countries case.
Flor McCarthy said the crucial schemes which farmers are keenly awaiting are the GLAS agri- environment measure and the new farm investment grant scheme. “IFA has already made a detailed submission accross all measures following the draft proposals which were published by the Minister last January. There are many issues to be resolved before the formal submission to Brussels and it is now vital that the details are thrashed out well in advance.”
The Rural Development Chairman said crucial to the success of the RDP and the drawdown of the €4bn available over the next seven years will be meaningful schemes, which have an impact on farm income, contribute to boosting agricultural production, and help in sustaining the rural economy.