Minister must offset coming 35% cut to Farm Capital funding – Matt Carthy TD
Sinn Féin spokesperson on Agriculture, Matt Carthy TD, has expressed concern that the budget for the Targeted Agriculture Modernisation Scheme (TAMS) is set for dramatic reductions post-2023, at the exact time that additional investment will be required to meet climate action objectives.
Teachta Carthy was speaking after he received conformation that the TAMS budget from 2024 to 2027 will be on average 35% smaller than during recent years.
The Cavan/Monaghan TD said:
“In recent years the allocation to TAMS has been between €80-€90million per annum.
“It is a crucial scheme that supports on-farm investment, delivering measures as the purchase of low-emission slurry spreading (LESS) technology or Solar PV equipment and farm building improvements.
“The coming years will be absolutely crucial for agriculture in terms of reducing emissions and increasing energy efficiency.
“While it makes sense that the Department would front-load TAMS investment in order to reap the greatest benefit over the course of this decade, this does not address the underlying fact that the overall budget for the 2023 to 2027 CAP period is not sufficient.
“The total TAMS budget between 2024 and 2027 will be at most €234 million, an average of €58.5million per year – a 35% cut based on the 2023 allocation.
“I am calling on the Minister to commit that alternative complementary schemes will be put in place to offset these cuts.
“Sinn Féin stands ready to work constructively with the Minister to develop and support such schemes – in particular, as proposed in our alternative budget, we believe there is both space and need for a standalone grant scheme to aid in the purchase of LESS equipment that would be open to all farmers denied funding through TAMS, as well as farm contractors."
Note to Editor:
Please see the PQ reference below:
For Written Answer on : 11/10/2022
Question Number(s): 783 Question Reference(s): 49588/22
Department: Agriculture, Food and the Marine
Asked by: Matt Carthy T.D.
To ask the Minister for Agriculture; Food and the Marine the maximum allowable allocation for on-farm investments in the 2023 to 2027 period per his CAP Strategic Plan; the allocation in Budget 2023; the remaining maximum allowable allocation in 2024 to 2027; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
The Indicative Budget for on-farm investments for the period 2022-2027 is €404m. This includes an indicative budget of €304m under the current Rural Development Programme, and an indicative budget of €100m is proposed under the CAP Strategic Plan 2023-2027. Both programmes will run in parallel for the years 2023-2025.
In the recent Budget, I announced an allocation of €90m for TAMS in 2023 which is an increase from €82m on the 2022 budget. This allocation will also support the proposed changes to the RDP including to support solar panels on farm next year. An increase to 60% grant rate and a standalone investment ceiling of €90,000 for solar panels is proposed. These changes are subject to EU approval and will form part of the 13th Amendment of the Rural Development Programme.