Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Charlie McConalogue has submitted a proposal to the European Commission for the 10th amendment of the Rural Development Programme (RDP).
The commission will have to grant approval for changes to the RDP – which will be in place from 2021 to 2024 – before they can be implemented.
“This is an important amendment to the Rural Development Programme. It will formally put in place the EU funding that was agreed in the budget negotiations last year, and will build on the RDP measures already in place,” the minister said.
The amendment has been considered by the RDP Monitoring Committee, and the approval by the European Commission is expected in the coming months.
The amendment provides for the implementation of several measures during the two-year transitional period between the 2014-2020 RDP and the new Common Agricultural Policy (CAP).
According to the department, these include a continuation of existing RDP measures; as well as new initiatives aimed at biodiversity, the climate and the environment; and economic and social development in rural areas.
Examples of new initiatives include the recently announced Straw Incorporation Measure; cooperation under the EIP-AGRI (European Innovation Partnership – Agriculture) structure on approaches to farm safety; and farm-based biodiversity and soil sampling.
In addition to national funding, the measures will be funded at EU level by a combination of the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) – which funds CAP Pillar II payments – and targeted funding of around €190 million from the European Union Recovery Instrument (EURI).
The EURI funding will be allocated as follows:
Measure proposed Allocation from EURI TAMS €96 million Straw Incorporation Measure €20 million Organic Farming Scheme €40 million EIP-AGRI Health and Safety €2.5 million EIP-AGRI Rewetting €3 million EIP-AGRI Locally-Led Climate and Environment €3 million LEADER programme €20 million Soil Sampling Programme €5.2 million Total EURI funding €189.7 million