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UK Farmers Call for Reassurance on EU Support Schemes

29 June 2016, at 6:00am

UK - National Farmers' Union President Meurig Raymond has written to EU Commissioner Phil Hogan today calling for reassurance that schemes currently available to UK farmers remain open and in place until 2020.

Mr Raymond and Mr Hogan spoke on Friday directly after the UK voted to leave membership of the European Union.

“We are in a period of extreme uncertainty,” said Mr Raymond.

“Speaking with Commissioner Hogan, I outlined the need to secure the best possible access to markets in the rest of Europe. Although we will not be a member of the EU, it will still be our major trading partner for the foreseeable future."

During the referendum period these schemes were assured until 2020 allowing for farm businesses to plan ahead, and Mr Raymond now asked for these promises to be kept.

"I have stressed the need for schemes, such as the Rural Development Scheme and the Basic Payment Scheme, to remain in place with the promised safeguards being made in the forthcoming period of negotiation," he said.

“Leaving the EU gives us the opportunity to build a new British agricultural policy which is adapted to our needs - one that’s easy to understand and simple to administer. We have a golden opportunity to ensure our arrangements in the future are proportionate and decisions are based on sound science.

"We will be looking for guarantees from government that the support given to our farmers is equal to that given to farmers in the EU, who will still be our principal competitors.”

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