Changes mean more funds for Maltese farmers  – EU Commissioner

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

Commissioner for Agriculture, Phil Hogan told that changes that the EU is planning to make in its agricultural budget will be of great advantage to small farmers such as those in Malta. He confirmed that Malta is currently drawing up a number of schemes which may tap into these funds. But if Maltese farmers learn to co-operate more they would be able to tap funds better.

Hogan told that member states would be expected propose projects which have to respect 9 criteria: 3 environmental, 3 social and 3 economic. If the criteria are fulfilled, the grants are given.

The Commissioner for Agriculture continued saying  that the EU has young farmers firmly in its crosshairs. The main aim here is to stop the attraction which non-agricultural employment has for youths. He said that the migration of youths from land is way too high, concurring in effect with a remark passed earlier with by EPP President  Joseph Daul, that lack of financing was driving youths out. This is what the new Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) aims to address.

EU officials told that with the imminent actuation of Brexit, the EU budget, currently being redraw, has to adapt to new financial realities. They said that the Common Agricultural Policy, which has always commanded the lion’s share of the financial allocation, too, will feel the pinch. In its drive, the EU aims to make the multi-annual financial framework give a more productive yield in this sector.