The meeting at Parliament Buildings Stormont provided an opportunity for the Minister and the UFU to discuss a range of issues relating to CAP and follows a number of similar meetings with farmers and farming groups following the closure of the consultation period in January 2014.
Speaking after the meeting Minister O’Neill said: “I welcome the opportunity to meet with the UFU delegation to discuss CAP reform. There are many areas in which we are in agreement on the way ahead, but there are also a few areas of my CAP proposals where the Union and I have diverging views, notably on the question of the single region model.
“My Department received responses from more than 850 stakeholders following the consultation on the ‘Policy Options Arising from the Reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (Pillar I Direct Payments)’, which closed on 17 January 2014. A summary of these responses was shared with the ARD Committee on Tuesday 04 March 2014.
“In the months ahead I will be considering the consultation responses carefully before decisions on implementation are made in preparation for notification to the EU Commission by 1 August 2014.”