Previous Section Back to Table of Contents Lords Hansard Home Page

CAP Reform: Single Payment Scheme

Earl Peel asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Whitty): Under the agreement reached at the Agriculture and Fisheries Council on 26 June, entitlements to new single payment will be allocated to farmers, irrespective of whether they are owner/occupiers or tenants, who claimed under existing CAP subsidy schemes during a historical reference period. We recognise that the option for those entitlements to transfer without land has implications for the contractual relationships between landlords and

14 Jul 2003 : Column WA89

tenants. However, it should be noted that entitlements to the single payment will only be exercisable by individuals farming the corresponding areas of eligible land. It is therefore to be expected that there will be markets for land with and without entitlement in which there will be buyers and sellers, and this will be just one factor to be reflected in rents agreed between landlords and tenants. It is against that background that we shall be seeking stakeholders' views on a draft EU Commission regulation setting detailed rules for the single payment scheme, which we expect to issue in the autumn.

Earl Peel asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What researchers have advised, and what representations they have received, about potential problems with regard to environmental degradation

14 Jul 2003 : Column WA90

    and new lettings, arising from transferability of single farm payment without land.[HL3783]

Lord Whitty: The Government have yet to receive the final report they commissioned on the potential environmental impacts of the European Commission's CAP reform proposals. However, it is expected that this will cover, amongst other things, the transferability of the new single payment without land. Tenant representatives supported this aspect of the Commission's proposals, while landowner representatives, with some support from the environmental community, favoured a system where the single payment could only be transferred with the land that gave rise to it. The Government remain to be convinced by the environmental arguments advanced in support of the latter view; nor do we expect transferability of entitlements to be a significant factor inhibiting new lettings.

   Back to Table of Contents Lords Hansard Home Page