Junior Minister in the Department of Agriculture, Tom Hayes, has said that the CAP deal agreed is significant and represents a milestone achievement of the Irish EU Presidency.
Minister Hayes was speaking on returning from Brussels after the trilogue discussions concluded in consensus after days of negotiations in Luxembourg and Brussels.
“The CAP deal which has been sealed represents a significant milestone and the success of the Irish EU Presidency. This is a strong deal for Irish farmers and, crucially, it is a much better package of measures than the proposals originally put forward by the European Commission. Rather than a system of flat rate payments a much fairer distribution system has been agreed. The deal will see €12 billion in EU support for Irish agriculture over the next seven years.
“There was a lot of concern amongst farmers about the Commission’s proposal for a flat rate payments system. However, under the final deal, Member States can opt for the partial convergence model recommended by Ireland combined with a 60% minimum payment.
“The package is particularly positive for young farmers, as it includes a mandatory 25% top-up payment for farmers under 40. .
“The redistribution of payments was always going to be the most contentious element of the new CAP deal for Irish farmers. However, I am confident we have delivered the fairest deal possible, by reaching an agreement to combine the Irish model with the 60% minimum payment.”
George Mason and Simon Ryan, South Tipperary County and Livestock Chairmen, met Minister Hayes to discuss the CAP negotiations in advance of his trip to Brussels.