Written answers

Thursday, 8 December 2005

Department of Agriculture and Food

National Reserve Applications

8:00 pm

Photo of Michael NoonanMichael Noonan (Limerick East, Fine Gael)
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Question 14: To ask the Minister for Agriculture and Food her plans for the allocation of entitlements under the national reserve; when she intends to issue the entitlements; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [37697/05]

Photo of Mary CoughlanMary Coughlan (Minister, Department of Social, Community and Family Affairs; Minister, Department of Agriculture and Food; Donegal South West, Fianna Fail)
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The position is that, over the past year, meetings of the single payment advisory committee, comprising representatives of my Department, the farming organisations and Teagasc, were held on a number of occasions to discuss the rules governing the allocation of entitlements from the national reserve. At more recent meetings, the committee assessed progress on processing the national reserve applications and discussed, in particular, what should constitute the "regional average value of entitlements". Under the regulations governing the national reserve, allocations to farmers who are successful under certain categories must not have the effect of increasing their entitlements above the regional average value of entitlements.

My officials subsequently sought clarification on certain issues from the European Commission and I will shortly be taking final decisions on the matter. The intention is that allocations will be made to successful applicants early in the new year.

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