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Eilidh Whiteford, MP for Banff & Buchan

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SNP Fighting at Westminster for Scotland's Future

Thursday, 21 November 2013


DR EILIDH WHITEFORD SECURES DEBATE ON CAP UPLIFT NEXT WEEK

SNP Agriculture spokesperson at Westminster Dr Eilidh Whiteford MP has secured time for a debate next week on the Common Agricultural Policy convergence uplift. The UK has received an uplift of 230 million Euros in its CAP funding allocation because of the historically low rates of support per hectare paid in Scotland compared to farmers in other parts of the UK. However rather than use the uplift for its intended purpose, the UK government has divided the extra funding across the whole of the UK, depriving Scottish farmers of what is due to them .

In advance of the debate, Dr. Whiteford commented:

“I met Scottish farmers leaders earlier this week in Westminster. They are expressing deep concern about the way the UK Government is short changing Scottish farmers over CAP support. The UK only qualified for the convergence uplift because Scotland has fallen so far behind the rest of the UK and Europe in terms of area payments per hectare. Thanks to the Tory-Liberal coalition, Scotland now languishes at the bottom of the European table in both direct payments and Rural Development Funding, and the convergence uplift is intended to create a more level playing field for Scotland’s farmers. Once again Westminster cannot be trusted

“This morning the DEFRA Minister told me that Scotland is ‘getting more that its fair share’ which will anger and astonish the farming community. There has been cross-party consensus in the Scottish Parliament that the convergence uplift must come to Scotland, yet UK Ministers have shown today they are simply not listening. My debate next week gives them an opportunity to reconsider their intransigent approach, listen to their own colleagues in Scotland, and put the convergence plans into action now, rather than wait until 2016

“It is becoming even clearer that a Yes vote next year offers the best solution for Scotland’s farming and rural communities. All decisions about Scotland’s farming industry should be taken by the people who live and work here.”

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