Thursday, 29 February 1996
Dáil Éireann Debate
18. Mr. M. Brennan asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Forestry if the final phase of the 1995 ewe premium has been paid; the number of farmers it has been paid to; and the number still awaiting payment. [4674/96]
95. Mr. Ellis asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Forestry when the EU package, agreed in December 1995, will be given to sheep farmers; and the progress, if any, on the payment of the final phase of the ewe premium. [4770/96]
Payment of the final phase of the 1995 ewe premium commenced on 7 February last and virtually all payments, with the exception of some problem cases, are now completed. Total number of applicants was 49,144 producers of which 47,247 have been paid in full.
The payment of a special level of support to Irish sheep producers in the non-disadvantaged areas, agreed at the December 1995 meeting of EU agriculture Ministers, requires the preparation of specific legislation by the EU Commission. I understand that work on the necessary regulation is in progress and I have been assured by the Commission that it will be presented as  quickly as possible. Payment of the supports will be made once this procedure which includes the approval of the European Parliament has been completed.
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