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No conflict between Glastir and CAP greening proposals
Mr Davies said:
“There is a misplaced perception that signing up to Glastir now would mean that a farmer would not be able to meet the greening requirements from 2014 and thus lose at least 30 per cent of the CAP direct payment.
“I want to make clear that we are at the beginning of a process for further CAP reform. It is far too early to speculate about what the final position will be - or when that stage will be reached. But I am absolutely confident that Glastir will be a central part of the future.
“There are a number of aspects within the Commission's reform package where we wish to see change and we are working with the UK government and others to make our views known on these issues.
“We know that the move to area payments will result in a significant redistribution from the current pattern of receipts under the current Single Payment Scheme. I will be challenging the Commission about the proposed 40% area element from 2014 as well as on achieving 100% area by 2019. It should be for the Welsh Government to decide the stepped change to full area payments and there should be a longer transitional period.
“On greening, I take the view that payment to farmers for sustainable land management actions is more appropriate for support under the Wales RDP - not the direct payment mechanism. We already have the cross compliance regime. I hope that the Commission will recognise the progress in Wales under existing agri-environment schemes such as Tir Gofal and Tir Cynnal and that Glastir will further accelerate that progress. If organic production can be exempt from the greening requirement, I will argue that there should be comparable recognition for farmers in a recognised agri-environment scheme.
"The current greening proposals appear as a rigid "one size fits all" approach and have the potential to undermine effective food production. I will argue for the Commission to adopt a much more flexible stance.
“I remain absolutely committed to Glastir. I can promise those in the farming community currently considering joining in 2012, or applying for 2013, that the Welsh Government will provide a fully flexible approach to those in Glastir to consider their future options when we have certainty on the final shape of the CAP reform process.”