BPS to remain unchanged for extra year in move to 'provide reassurance'

Basic Payments are to remain in 2020 to support transition to the Government's new Land Management Programme, Lesley Griffiths has announced
Basic Payments are to remain in 2020 to support transition to the Government's new Land Management Programme, Lesley Griffiths has announced

The farming industry has welcomed the announcement by Welsh Government that the Basic Payment Scheme will remain unchanged for 2020.

The Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths said the decision to keep the Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) for a further year will "provide reassurance" to the industry.

She said the extra year will give farmers more time to prepare for the changes to future farm support post-Brexit in the form of the Welsh Government's new Land Management Programme.

The announcement also saw the Cabinet Secretary confirm that her department will pay over 85%, 13,200, of all Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) claims on the first day of the 2018 payment window, the 3rd December.



The option of an ‘opt-in’ loan is still available for farmers whose BPS claim has not yet been validated, but they must apply before 30th November.

NFU Cymru has welcomed confirmation from Ms Griffiths, but warned that any replacement schemes must deliver "at least the same level of stability" for the industry in the future.



NFU Cymru President John Davies said: “We are clear that any replacement scheme(s) must deliver at least the same level of stability for farming businesses, the food supply chain and rural communities that the BPS currently delivers.

“This can only be determined once the nature of our long term trading relationship becomes clearer, after thorough impact assessments have been completed and when we can be absolutely confident that any new measures have been robustly designed and piloted.”

Mr Davies added: “We have serious reservations over current Welsh Government proposals for a new land management programme. In our response to the Brexit and Our Land consultation, NFU Cymru has reiterated our vision for a comprehensive integrated Welsh agricultural policy built around three cornerstones – productivity, environment and stability.

“Such a policy, we believe, can ensure that Welsh farmers can continue to deliver and grow the unparalleled contribution it makes to the economic, environmental, social and cultural well-being of Wales.”