ICSA seeks an extension of closing date for BPS applications

Fifteen EU countries already have permission to reset the BPS deadline.

Sligo News File.

ICSA president Patrick Kent is pressing Agriculture Minister Michael Creed to extend the deadline for the submission of applications under the EU Basic Payment Scheme.

Patrick Kent, president ICSA…extend BPS closing date call on Creed

Commenting following the announcement that EU commissioner Phil Hogan had already allowed 15 EU States to amend the closing date for the BPS, Mr. Kent said that in light of the move to an online process, “an extension makes perfect sense.

“Applying online may not be that straightforward for many, especially older farmers and those with poor or no internet connectivity, so there needs to be as much flexibility
as possible given.”

He said, “ICSA is aware of the huge efforts put in by the Department of Agriculture on this issue and that BPS clinics have been organised throughout the country. However, 2018 has been an exceptionally difficult year for farming with the extended winter and fodder shortages. Farmers have had a lot to contend with, and many are way behind schedule at this point.

“The choice is there now for Minister Creed to extend the deadline to June 15 and I would urge him to avail of that. It is imperative that no one gets left behind during this transition.”