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Agriculture: Subsidies

Volume 488: debated on Tuesday 3 March 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what additional funding will be made available through the EU’s economic recovery plan to rural development, with particular reference to training in environmental improvement. (258816)

As part of the proposed European Economic Recovery Plan, the Commission is proposing a €1.25 billion package of measures to be delivered through Member States’ Rural Development Programmes, of which €1 billion will be dedicated to rural broadband infrastructure projects and €250 million to projects in support of the ‘new challenges’ agreed as part of the recent CAP Health Check (climate change, renewable energy, water management, biodiversity and dairy sector restructuring). No agreement has yet been reached in the Council of Ministers on this package. The Commission is proposing that this funding should be allocated in proportion to existing shares of rural development funding. The United Kingdom would therefore receive around €15 million in total. No decisions have yet been made on how this funding might be used, if the package is agreed.