Confusion reigns over Basic Payment Scheme in Wales
Confusion reigns over Labour’s implementation of the Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) in Wales and farmers are ‘mired in never-ending uncertainty’.
That was the message from the Welsh Conservative Leader today, as he questioned Labour’s First Minister in the Senedd.
Andrew RT Davies called for clarification on part payments due to be made by the Welsh government in December, along with a clear timetable for balance payments next year.
It follows a decision by Labour ministers to rule out early BPA payments, despite the facility being available.
Mr Davies also questioned long delays in progressing with the Wales Rural Development Plan and called for the introduction of a small capital grants scheme.
“The Basic Payment Scheme is a key safety net for the industry, yet confusion reigns amongst Labour ministers and farmers are mired in never-ending uncertainty.
“Early payments were dismissed by Labour and still we await a clear timetable going forward. That’s unfair and unnecessary, at a time when our farming communities are already reeling.
“Welsh Labour’s record-breaking cuts to the rural affairs budget have hit hard and the dairy and meat industries have suffered a torrid 12 months.
“Not only are farmers left wondering when they’ll have access to the Basic Payment Scheme, they also have to deal with a complete lack of progress on the Rural Development Plan.
“We need to see farming support prioritised and Welsh government should bring forward a small capital grants scheme – under the development plan – that would benefit the whole rural economy.
“Now more than ever – Labour ministers must provide clarity on these hugely important schemes.”