Call for Advance on Subsidies to Combat Drought22 March 2012
SPAIN - The Spanish Minister of Agriculture, Food and the Environment, Miguel Arias Canete has said that Spain will request an advance of EU aid to ease the financial burdens on farms dealing with drought.
As well as an advancement on payments of the single payment subsidy and livestock premiums, Spain is also asking for flexibility in livestock premiums.
The Minister called on the EU to pay subsidies from October onwards, as opposed to their usual payment period of December to June.
Minister Arias said that flexibility in the suckler cow premium is needed to ensure that producers who do not utilise the full premium, due to poor grass growth, will not lose the rights to such payments in future years.
Both Spain and Portugal addressed the EU Council earlier this week, highlighting that rainfall has been 49 per cent below the average in recent years.
The effects of the drought on arable crops will not become apparent until harvest time, said the Minister. However the livestock sector is particularly worried about the droughts effect on pastures and feed supplies.
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