Minister Michael Creed has confirmed that balancing payments under the 2019 Basic Payments Scheme (BPS) and the Greening Scheme have now commenced.

According to a statement today, Monday, December 2, the commencement of these payments now brings the total paid under the 2019 scheme to date to €1.4 billion, paid out to some 120,000 individuals.

Minister Creed outlined: “In mid-October, my department began issuing 70% advance payments under the BPS to farmers across the country. This year saw 94% of eligible farmers receiving an advance payment in the first pay run.

Regular pay runs have been in place since October, and I am happy to confirm that the 30% balancing payments under BPS have now commenced on schedule.

The minister also confirmed that payments under the 2019 National Reserve and Young Farmers Scheme will also commence at this time to coincide with the BPS balancing payments.

The minister argued that the system of payments under these schemes “compare very favourably to the systems in place in other [EU] members states”.

“I am very conscious that these payments provide a significant financial boost for individual farmers and the wider rural economy,” he added.

Runs of payments are set to continue as individual cases are cleared for payment, according to Minister Creed’s department. The minister is urging farmers who have outstanding queries from the department to respond as soon as possible “in order to facilitate payment”.

Concluding his remarks, Minister Creed said that “the timely processing of payments across schemes remains a key priority for my department, as I am very aware of the importance of such schemes for the farming community”.

Meanwhile, it was also confirmed that balancing payments under the Areas of Natural Constraints (ANC) scheme will begin next week.