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EU must support farmers impacted by Russian trade ban - Matt Carthy MEP

15 September, 2014 - by Matt Carthy MEP

Sinn Féin MEP, Matt Carthy, has spoken in the European Parliament this evening on the impact of the Russian Federation trade ban on agricultural products from the EU. Mr. Carthy, who is a member of the Parliament's Agriculture & Rural Development committee, said that European supports needed to be put in place to compensate farmers and businesses impacted during the sanctions period but also to cover long term loses that will be felt as a result of the ban.

Speaking in the Parliament, during a debate with Agriculture Commissioner on Monday evening, Dacian Ciolos, Mr. Carthy said:

"The ban imposed by the Russian Federation on Agricultural products from the EU is a very worrying development and reflects the failures of both Russian and European diplomacy that has impacted greatest on the people of Ukraine but will undoubtedly now be felt by farmers and businesses across these regions.

"The EU's agri-food sector is in crisis, and these sanctions may mean those already struggling to survive will no longer be able to do so.

"Questions that therefore need to be addressed this evening include:

What further measures will the Commission take to ensure that our small family farmers to do pay the price for political decisions that they did not ask for?

"Will the crisis reserve cover their losses?

"Will compensation be put in place to cover for scenarios where there is long-term impact on farmers beyond the sanctions period?

"Small farmers need a friend in the European Commission, not a bureaucracy which will sit idly by while their livelihoods suffer".

Speaking afterwards Mr. Carthy called on the Irish government to also insist, at European Council level, that Irish farmers receive full compensation for losses incurred as a result of a diplomatic war of which they have had no input or consultation.

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