Budget 2018: Greenlight for ANC top-up, more cash for TAMS, new low-cost loan scheme in pipeline
€25m top-up to the Areas of Natural Constraint (ANC) scheme
Expenditure on the TAMS programme is to rise by €20m this year
€25m for low cost loans
Leasing land for Solar farming to be classed as agricultural activity
Marginal farmers and solar farming are among the winners in today's Budget.
The long-awaited €25m top-up to the Areas of Natural Constraint (ANC) scheme has been given the green light.
Expenditure on the TAMS programme is to rise by €20m this year to meet the increase in approval levels and the Budget has also included provision for a €25m scheme similar to last year's low-cost loans for farmers.
There was extremely high demand for the €150m low-cost loan scheme, developed by the Government and Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI) for cash-strapped farmers. The farm bodies have been warning access to credit at a competitive rate is vital to provide working capital on farms.
There will also be continued expenditure under the Rural Development Programme for schemes such as GLAS and the €300m Beef Data and Genomics Programme (BDGP).
However, there won't be any increase in funding under the BDGP scheme.
The Minister for Finance announced an increase in funding of €64m for the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine. This will bring the total investment in this sector to over €1.5 billion in Exchequer funding in 2018.
It is understood the increase in stamp duty on commercial land from 2pc to 9pc will not impact on agricultural land.