EU offers 1-month extension to CAP application deadline

All European Union countries can now choose to extend the deadline by which farmers must submit their applications for Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) payments.

Member states can now opt for a new deadline of June 15, 2020, instead of May 15, 2020.

The decision, announced by the European Commission on Tuesday, March 17, comes amidst the global outbreak of coronavirus (Covid-19).

Covid-19 outbreak

In a statement issued this morning, the commission said: “Following an initial request from the Italian authorities – facing an unprecedented crisis in relation to the Covid-19 outbreak and the overall difficult situation faced by the European Union – the European Commission has decided to allow member states to offer an extension of one month for the deadline for farmers to submit their applications for direct payments and certain payments under rural development.

“The extension will be possible for all eligible farmers in all member states. It is, however, up to the member states to decide whether to use the extension.

“In order to extend the deadline by one month, the commission is currently preparing the legal steps to be taken to allow a derogation from current rules.

The new deadline for applications will now be June 15, 2020, instead of May 15, allowing more flexibility for farmers to fill in their applications in these difficult and unparalleled times.

Every year, European farmers file their applications to receive CAP income support. National authorities then process the applications and ensure the necessary checks are undertaken.

CAP payments are then distributed at national or regional level, which is reimbursed by the European Commission through the EU’s budget.

Aside, the European Commission says that it is working “on all fronts” to support member states facing the Covid-19 outbreak.

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