Farm Ireland

Sunday 20 January 2019

Department under pressure to make payments on time with applications now 100% online

Ciaran Moran

Ciaran Moran

Over 129,700 farmers applied online for their 2018 Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) in advance of the May 15 deadline.

2018 was the first year that all applications for the BPS and Transfer of Entitlements were to be made online.

The Minister for Agriculture, Food & the Marine, Michael Creed said he was very happy to confirm that so many Irish farmers have met the requirement to apply online in 2018.

"My Department has put a range of supports in place to help farmers make this transition, and the move to online application has proved to be very successful.”

Outlining the advantage of applying online the Ministers aid in recent years, online BPS applicants have seen the benefits of preliminary checks in particular.

"Now that we have reached 100pc online application, these benefits will be available to all farmers.

"Preliminary checks afford online applicants the opportunity to address any dual claims, over claims and overlaps identified on online applications within specified time frames to ensure prompt payment with the avoidance of penalties," he said.

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Mr Lorcan McCabe, Deputy President of ICMSA has called on the Minister of Agriculture, Food and the Marine to deal sympathetically with any late applicants due to the fact that it is the first year of 100pc online applications.  

"There will be a small number of cases in particular older farmers who may still not have submitted their applications and it is important that leniency is shown towards these farmers if the need arises.

"Now that 100% of applications are online, ICMSA is clearly saying that there should be no delay in informing farmers if there is an issue with their application and this must be done as soon as possible so that farmers can respond, and an issue resolved well in advance of the payment date.  

Given the extremely difficult year farmers have had to date, Mr McCabe said, that it is essential that the ANC payment is made in September, the BPS payment in October and that all farmers must receive their payment within the Farmers Charter commitments.

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