Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue TD, and Ministers of State Senator Pippa Hackett and Martin Heydon TD, have welcomed today’s agreement by the government to submit Ireland’s draft CAP Strategic Plan to the European Commission, by the deadline of 1 January 2022 provided for in EU regulations.
Speaking after the Government meeting earlier today, Minister McConalogue said: "I am delighted that my Government colleagues have agreed to the submission of the draft CAP Strategic Plan over the coming days. This CAP is a farmer-friendly and fair one which will offer confidence and clarity around our farm payments over the coming years. This will be an important milestone in the development of the Plan, but it will not be the final step."
"Further detailed engagement will take place with the European Commission in the first half of 2022, and the approval process is likely to last between six and nine months, with the Plan coming into effect on 1st January 2023.”
The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine is now putting the final technical arrangements in place for the submission of the plan to the European Commission via its dedicated SFC IT system.
The Minister highlighted the hugely important contribution of agri-food stakeholders to the development of the draft Plan, through both the national CAP Stakeholder Consultative Committee and various other consultative channels, including direct engagement with farmers through a series of mart meetings earlier this autumn.
He said: “Engagement from stakeholders, including visiting 27 marts in every county in the country, has been vital in getting the draft CAP Strategic Plan to this point, and in ensuring that we meet the twin objectives of ensuring the continued viability of our productive farmers and maximising the environmental sustainability of the sector. I have engaged and listened intently to stakeholder feedback and I have now responded for example through the expanded range of agricultural practices that can be implemented under the new Eco-scheme, which will ensure access for all farmers, and through the ambition that we have shown in the proposed Pillar II Agri-Environment and Climate Measure.”
Minister McConalogue said: “I believe the work to date has resulted in a draft CAP Strategic Plan that will help to achieve our ambitious environmental goals, while also delivering income security for family farms for the period 2023-2027. The budget commitment of almost €10 billion, and in particular the massive increase in National co-funding. is also a real demonstration of the commitment of this Government to farmers and to the wider rural economy. There is still a lot of work to be done, but the draft Plan provides a solid foundation on which to build.”
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