Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Agriculture, Food and the Marine Charlie McConalogue TD says the revised Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) budget proposal by the European Commission represents a positive step forward with an increased CAP budget for the 2021-2027 period but warned that this progress must now be built upon by Member States and the European Parliament.

Deputy McConalogue said, “The Commission’s original proposal two years ago was a slap in the face to farmers and the vital role they play in maintaining food supply chains, contributing to food security and enhancing environmental outcomes.

“Total CAP funding in the latest proposal is €391 billion, with the rural development programme’s allocation strengthened by over €16b additionally through the Next Generation EU fund.

“Given that €381b was allocated to the CAP 2014-2020 programme, excluding the €27b assigned to the UK, the development is welcome and comes after a strong campaign by farming representative groups for increased CAP funds.

“However, the work must now continue to ensure the next CAP budget is fully funded to the maximum level to ensure farm incomes are safeguarded in the years ahead. It is now incumbent on Member States at Council level and the European Parliament to protect farm incomes by ensuring that the final agreement on the Multiannual Financial Framework builds on this progress and secures further allocations that will deliver a well-funded CAP in the years ahead,” concluded Deputy McConalogue.