Farm payments plan 'robbing Peter to pay Paul', claims IFA
CHANGES to how Common Agricultural Policy funds are shared out would be "robbing Peter to pay Paul", the Irish Farmers' Association has warned, writes Aideen Sheehan.
IFA president John Bryan criticised proposals to change the system of paying farmers by reducing the Single Farm Payment and increasing payments to eastern European countries.
Irish farmers could see EU subsidies cut after 2013 as part of a move by the bloc's aspiring farm chief to redistribute aid to more needy countries.
Dacian Ciolos, Romania's candidate for agriculture commissioner, told European parliamentarians yesterday that direct support to farmers should "not necessarily" depend on past levels, which is how Ireland's payments are calculated.
"I want to do away with the distinctions between old and new member states," he added.