At a meeting of the IFA National Farm Business Committee this week, Martin Stapleton from County Limerick was elected Chairman, taking over from Wexford man, Tom Doyle, who had completed his four-year term as Chairman.
Martin Stapleton farms in Oola, Co Limerick, and is a dairy farmer.
The new Chairman thanked outgoing Chairman Tom Doyle for the great contribution he has made over the last four years. He noted particularly his important role in delivering positive taxation measures for farmers and for farm development in the 2014 Agri-taxation review.
The Chairman also congratulated the new President of IFA, Joe Healy, who, prior to his election, was a member of the IFA Farm Business Committee, and he pledged the full support of the committee to the new President.
Mr Stapleton identified that an immediate issue in his chairmanship are the serious cashflow challenges facing farmers across almost all sectors. He said, ‘I will be engaging as a matter or priority with the financial institutions and other credit providers to ensure that short-term and flexible financing options are provided to farmers, and, importantly, that the banks make farmers aware of these options.”
He continued, “IFA will run a strong information campaign on farm finances during 2016, including meetings, media briefings and documentation. In addition, IFA will continue to support farmers facing credit difficulties, and I urge anyone who is under pressure, to look for assistance as early as possible”.
On taxation issues, Mr Stapleton said, “I am very clear that there must be a measure found to better tackle income volatility through the taxation system and I will be working to develop proposals in this area in advance of Budget 2017”.