Monday 25 March 2019

Irish, French farmers 'stand together'

Solidarity of EU member states: IFA president Joe Healy. Photo: Gareth Chaney, Collins
Solidarity of EU member states: IFA president Joe Healy. Photo: Gareth Chaney, Collins
Ciaran Moran

Ciaran Moran

Key Irish and French farming associations have strongly supported the EU27 position on Brexit.

In both Ireland and France, farmers represent a powerful lobby which politicians in both nations are keen to keep onside.

The Irish Farmers' Association and the French farmers' union FNSEA held a bilateral meeting in Dublin.

They want to see a deal that does the least possible damage to Irish and French farmers and EU agriculture.

IFA president Joe Healy and the president of FNSEA, Christiane Lambert, said safeguarding the integrity of the EU single market and customs union is an essential element of any outcome.

"A no deal would be very detrimental to Irish and French farmers, but the EU must remain firm on the Withdrawal Agreement.

"After all, this was agreed with the EU by the UK government," the two presidents stated.

"But, if we end up in a no-deal scenario, we expect the Commission to stand by their commitment to support European farmers in the strongest possible way," they said.

They re-affirmed their commitment to the backstop and acknowledged the steadfast position of EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier and the solidarity of the other member states.

Mr Healy acknowledged the solidarity of French farmers, who have stood with Irish farmers at critical times during our membership of the EU.

Irish Independent

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