Farm Ireland

Sunday 25 February 2018

Billion euro boost for rural Ireland as farmers receive EU payments from today

The Basic Payment is worth over €600m to farmers in Ireland.
The Basic Payment is worth over €600m to farmers in Ireland.
Margaret Donnelly

Margaret Donnelly

Payments to begin to over 100,000 farmers from today

Farmers are set to receive over €1bn in EU subsidies from today, as the first payments under the Basic Payment Scheme are made.

This week’s payments are an advance payment of the Basic Payment Scheme and will go to over 100,000 farmers.  

The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Michael Creed said his Department had prioritised the processing of payments under the Basic Payment Scheme, where it will be paying out 70% advance payment today.

“This early payment in conjunction with the Areas of Natural Constraint Scheme, GLAS and AEOS payments collectively are worth over €1.5 billion annually to farmers,” he said.

What is the Basic Payment Scheme?

The Basic Payment Scheme (BPS), introduced in 2015, as part of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) replaces the Single Payment System (SPS) and this year a 70% advance will be paid to farmers this month, with the balance expected to be paid to most farmers in December.

The Basic Payment is worth over €714m to farmers in Ireland. The payments also have a huge knock-on-boost for rural Ireland with studies showing that farmers spend the majority of  there income within 35km of the farm.

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It comes after last week’s announcement in the Budget that farmers can look forward to low-cost loans which are part funded by the Department of Agriculture.

Under the low-cost loan fund, farmers will be able to borrow money for investment in their farm at a rate of 2.95% for loans of up to €150,000.

Farmers in Northern Ireland can also expect to receive an advance of their Basic Payment Scheme this week.

The Minister for Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs Minister Michelle McIlveen said that fund will arrive in bank accounts by Thursday and that 80% of eligible farmers will receive a 70% advance payment.

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