Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Agriculture & Food Éamon Ó Cuív TD has called on the Government to move swiftly to ensure that Irish farmers are given access to a new credit line, which has been announced by the European Commission and the European Investment Bank.

The EU financial credit mechanism aims to help ease access to finance for farmers and other rural businesses in EU member states.

Deputy Ó Cuív commented, “We welcome any initiative at European level that will help Irish farmers secure an increased credit line. The government must immediately prioritise the implementation of this new EU financial instrument so that farmers across the country can draw down these funds.

“It is vital that this funding source is used for new investments to generate jobs and growth in the Irish rural economy in the years ahead. The fund has the potential to regenerate the agriculture industry by encouraging young people back into the sector.  It can also be used to help finance rural start-ups and agri-enterprises, which are vitally needed in the economic recovery of the rural Ireland.

“Over the past four years, Fine Gael and Labour have set about dismantling a wide range of programmes and initiatives in rural Ireland, which had been established by the previous administration.  It is now more important than ever that this new EU funding model is urgently implemented to help ease access to finance for Irish farmers and rural entrepreneurs, in order to grow employment in the sector”.