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Politicians outline plans for post-Brexit Wales

 

Political parties used this week’s Royal Welsh Show to set out their stalls for a post-Brexit Wales.

UKIP

 

Neil Hamilton, Leader of UKIP in the Welsh Assembly and the party’s spokesman on agriculture and rural affairs, said: “Let’s cut red tape, make a bonfire of unnecessary forms, direct subsidies to where they are most needed and protect the most vulnerable farms, especially those in the uplands.

 

“Now that agricultural policy is to be repatriated from Brussels to the UK, each of the four British nations will have its own, individual regime.

 

“This is great news for Welsh farmers and a golden opportunity for those whose lives and livelihoods are most intimately affected to shape their own future.

 

“UKIP is totally committed to protecting the interests of Welsh farmers and the countryside and I intend to lead the debate.

 

“I call on everyone who is interested in the future prosperity of Welsh farming and farmers to come forward now with practical ideas to create a cost effective system of agricultural support and guidance in the wider interest of Welsh people.”

 

Plaid Cymru

 

Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood has called on the Welsh farming community to maximise the benefits of membership while Wales remains a part of the EU.

 

She said that Welsh farmers would continue to receive CAP support through the Basic Payment Scheme and enjoy tariff-free trade with the EU as long as Wales was a member of it.

 

“We need to make the most of this funding now while working towards the best deal for Welsh farmers -- and that means making the case to maintain the level of financial support they currently receive.

 

“Plaid Cymru was not in favour of leaving the EU, but now that the people of Wales have taken that decision we need to ensure we maximise the opportunities we have.

 

“But when that funding ends we need to ensure that the level of support afforded to Welsh farmers in direct payments is at least as much after we leave the EU as it is now.

 

“During the EU referendum campaign, Welsh farmers were promised that the direct payment support they receive will be at least equal to that received through the Common Agricultural Policy.

 

Trade

 

"They were also told that they could continue to trade with the EU according to terms favourable to Welsh businesses.

 

“Plaid Cymru will hold them to account and work to ensure that these promises are kept.”

 

Simon Thomas, the party’s Shadow Cabinet Member for Energy, Climate Change and Rural Affairs, said: “The decision to leave the EU means a very different shape for agricultural and environmental policies.

 

“We could adopt a broader economic approach to supporting rural Wales by including funding for broadband infrastructure and a support mechanism for farmers that recognises the value they bring to maintaining the environment and landscape we value.

 

“But the UK Government must deliver on the policies made by the ‘Leave’ campaign that global direct payments for Welsh farmers would be at least equal to that received through the Common Agricultural Policy.”

 

Exports

 

“As 90 per cent of Welsh agricultural exports go to the rest of the EU, it is vital that tariff-free access to this market is retained.

 

“I expect the Welsh and Westminster governments to fight for that and secure it.”

 


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