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- Farming and rural
Scottish farmers denied the full £190 million.
Scottish hill farmers on average are being denied around £14,000 over a six year period under the CAP convergence uplift Rural Secretary Fergus Ewing has said.
Under the last CAP reform, the EU set out to redistribute direct payments more equitably across Europe based on average Euros per hectare. Member states receiving less than 90% of the EU average would be awarded an uplift in order to move towards a minimum rate per hectare.
This would have seen up to £190 million over 6 years returned to Scotland. Instead Scotland received around £30 million under the UK Government’s allocation.
Mr Ewing said:
“Despite repeated requests, there is no evidence the UK Government are taking action to deliver a fair share of the additional convergence funding to Scotland.
“Without the Scottish rate, there would have been no extra money for the UK. For example, had the full allocation been delivered to Scotland, instead of being shared across the UK on a historic basis, our hill farmers could have an extra £14,000 over the six year payment period, a significant amount for farmers, although of course the actual amount would depend on the scale of the business.
“There is currently no level playing field north and south of the border. Farmers doing the same job in different parts of the UK, do not presently receive comparable levels of payments for their hard work. This money rightly belongs to Scottish farmers and should be returned to them immediately.
There are around 11,500 businesses in receipt of LFASS, which can be used as a proxy for the hill and upland sector which has the lowest per hectare rate.