ó Cuív demands a CAP on maximum payment
A limit on the maximum payment per hectare should be introduced in the new CAP payment scheme because productivity levels do not increase once payments go above €400/ha.
The Fianna Fáil spokesman for agriculture, Eamon Ó Cuív, said that 2010 data from the Department of Agriculture showed that productivity averages for payments above €400/ha were not any higher than the average output per hectare for payments in the €300-400/ha range.
"This means that there is no justification for paying more than €350/ha and there is also no reason why we should limit the losses to farmers with huge payments per hectare to just 28pc, as suggested by Minister Coveney," said Deputy Ó Cuív.
There is a provision within the agreement to limit the losses for any individual farmer to a maximum of 30pc, but this is an optional measure that can be ignored by any member state.
A limit of €650/ha was suggested during the concluding part of the negotiations, but Department of Agriculture officials have indicated that capping payments at this level would yield less than €2millon.
The Fianna Fail politician is also pushing for the front-loading concept to be implemented at the full rate, along with minimum levels of production as a requirement to qualify for the new EU farm payments.
"CSO data shows that almost four out of every five farms in the country are less than 50ha in size, when rented land is included," claimed Deputy Ó Cuív.