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CAP reform report published
The Scottish Parliament's Rural Affairs, Climate Change and the Environment Committee recently published its report on the proposed reform of the Common Agricultural Policy.
Commenting on the report, Rural Affairs Secretary Richard Lochhead said:
"It’s critical that we get a fair deal for Scotland’s farmers in Europe and I welcome the support shown by the Rural Affairs, Climate Change and Environment Committee in this report.
"When it comes to CAP reform, the devil is in the detail but it's reassuring that the committee's views largely reflect our position.
"As the committee acknowledges, Scotland currently receives the lowest level of Single Farm Payment and rural development funding in the UK and amongst the lowest in Europe. This must be addressed in the current reform process and this is a priority for the Scottish Government.
"This week I’ve attended the European Council working to get the best possible deal for Scotland and made clear that we oppose the UK Government’s unhelpful desire to see a substantial cut to the Direct Payments which are a lifeline for so many Scottish farmers.
"If the redistribution of CAP direct payments proposed for 2014 onwards applied to Scotland as a member state, our farmers could receive between £100 million and £200 million more each year – valuable support that would help them continue to manage our landscape and produce the fine raw ingredients that are the backbone of our food and drink industry.
"I also agree with the committee that we need to be realistic about the timescale for reform and – crucially – ensure that workable interim support measures are put in place."