Sinn Féin agriculture Spokeperson, Martin Ferris TD has welcomed the significant announcements made today by Agriculture and Rural Development Minister, Michelle O’Neill MLA, in the North.
They involved agreement on CAP reform, the new Rural Development Programme and the agri-food strategy report Going for Growth.
Deputy Ferris said he was pleased that the Executive has reached agreement on the remaining CAP implementation (Direct Payments and Rural Development) issues.
Deputy Ferris said: “It is very important and I am very pleased that the Executive has reached agreement on remaining CAP implementation issues. I congratulate my Sinn Féin colleague in the North, Michelle O’Neill for finding the compromise needed and succeeding in finding a fair and balanced outcome for farmers all across the North.
“Her engagement with stakeholders was unprecedented. She took views on board and reached agreement that there should be a single region model, no voluntary coupled support - though the latter will be kept under review - and an Areas of Natural Constraint (ANC) scheme in Pillar II for the first two years of the next CAP period, with a review thereafter along with other measures.
“The Executive also agreed that the basic payment and the greening payment will move to a flat rate payment per hectare over a seven-year transition period starting in 2015.
“There are also measures to support the agri-food industry and investment in the Rural Development Programme.”