Welsh Government plans to complete the transition to an entirely new system of farm support by 2025 have been given a cautious welcome by farming groups.
Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs Lesley Griffiths made the announcement in the Senedd yesterday, as she explained she wanted to set a timetable despite the uncertainty around future funding from Westminster.
She confirmed the Basic Payment Scheme would continue as planned for 2018 and 2019, but from 2020, a ‘gradual and multi-year transition’ from existing to new schemes will take place.
Further details about the plans, which will be subject to consultation, will be set out in July.
FUW president Glyn Roberts said: “We welcome the assurance given regarding the 2019 scheme year, but whether a five-year transition period from 2020 is appropriate will depend upon a whole set of circumstances which are as yet unknown.
“These include the nature of any post-Brexit deal with the EU and what exactly we are transitioning to.
NFU Cymru president Glyn Roberts echoed those concerns, pointing out neither Government nor industry know what the post-Brexit marketplace will look like.
“We must also be mindful that Welsh farmers will be competing with farmers in the remaining EU27 who will continue to be supported under a well-funded Common Agricultural Policy”, he added.