Single Farm Payment 2005
Since the 2003 reform, the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) has had to adapt to the new challenges of European agriculture, such as climate change, water management and the protection of biodiversity. The aim of this Regulation is to simplify and modernise the CAP. To this end, it gradually abolishes coupled support (production-related aid) and includes it in the Single Payment Scheme (SPS). The changes planned also allow European farmers to better take into account market trends to guide their production and contribute to rural development.
Council Regulation (EC) No 73/2009 of 19 January 2009 establishing common rules for direct support schemes for farmers under the common agricultural policy and establishing certain support schemes for farmers, amending Regulations (EC) No 1290/2005, (EC) No 247/2006, (EC) No 378/2007 and repealing Regulation (EC) No 1782/2003.
Since the reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) which took place in June 2003, production-related support has been gradually abolished and included in the Single Payment Scheme (SPS).
The payment of support to farmers is reduced if they do not comply with standards on environmental protection, animal welfare and product quality. This principal, called “cross-compliance”, is adapted to the new requirements aimed at improving water management and maintaining the advantages of set aside within an environmental perspective.
If a farmer fails to comply with those rules, direct payments may be reduced.
Modulation and financial discipline
Direct payments of over EUR 5 000 have been reduced by 7 % in 2009. This rate will be increased to 10 % by 2012. The first EUR 5 000 of support is exempt. An additional reduction of 4 % applies to support of over EUR 300 000. The corresponding amounts are transferred to the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) to enhance rural development programmes, in particular for measures concerning climate change, renewable energies, water management and biodiversity. The modulation system does not apply to the outermost regions or to the Aegean Islands.
Farm advisory system
Farmers may take part in the advisory system set up by Member States. The system advises farmers with regard to compliance with regulatory requirements and good conditions.
Integrated administration and control system (IACS)
Each Member State is to set up an integrated administration and control system which enables farmers’ payment applications to be checked. Through this electronic system, the State is able to deal with aid applications and be assured that payments are made properly, through administrative checks and on-site checks of information provided by farmers, inter alia concerning agricultural parcels and payment entitlements.
Full payments are to be made to beneficiaries in one or two instalments per year between 1 December and 30 June of the following calendar year. The Commission may authorise advances. Farmers who have artificially created the conditions required for obtaining payments will not receive them.
The single payment comprises aid allocated to farmers irrespective of their production. This system of support has been introduced to support farmers’ income and to improve the competitiveness and sustainability of European agriculture.
For each Member State, the ceilings for single payments are as shown in the following tables (thousands of Euros):
|Member State||2009||2010||2011||2012||2013||2014||2015||2016 and following years|
|Belgium||614 179||611 805||611 805||614 855||614 855||614 855||614 855||614 855|
|Denmark||1 030 478||1 030 478||1 030 478||1 049 002||1 049 002||1 049 002||1 049 002||1 049 002|
|Germany||5 770 254||5 771 997||5 771 997||5 852 908||5 852 908||5 852 908||5 852 908||5 852 908|
|Greece||2 380 713||2 211 683||2 214 683||2 232 533||2 216 533||2 216 533||2 216 533||2 216 533|
|Spain||4 858 043||5 091 044||5 108 650||5 282 193||5 139 444||5 139 444||5 139 444||5 139 444|
|France||8 407 555||8 420 822||8 420 822||8 521 236||8 521 236||8 521 236||8 521 236||8 521 236|
|Ireland||1 342 268||1 340 521||1 340 521||1 340 869||1 340 869||1 340 869||1 340 869||1 340 869|
|Italy||4 143 175||4 207 177||4 227 177||4 370 024||4 370 024||4 370 024||4 370 024||4 370 024|
|Luxembourg||37 518||37 536||37 646||37 671||37 084||37 084||37 084||37 084|
|Netherlands||853 090||853 090||853 090||897 751||897 751||897 751||897 751||897 751|
|Austria||745 561||745 235||745 235||751 606||751 606||751 606||751 606||751 606|
|Portugal||608 751||589 499||589 499||605 962||605 962||605 962||605 962||605 962|
|Finland||566 801||565 520||565 520||570 548||570 548||570 548||570 548||570 548|
|Sweden||763 082||763 082||763 082||770 906||770 906||770 906||770 906||770 906|
|United Kingdom||3 985 895||3 975 916||3 975 973||3 988 042||3 987 922||3 987 922||3 987 922||3 987 922|
|Member State||2009||2010||2011||2012||2013||2014||2015||2016 and following years|
|Bulgaria||287 399||336 041||416 372||499 327||580 087||660 848||741 606||814 295|
|Czech Republic||559 622||654 241||739 941||832 144||909 313||909 313||909 313||909 313|
|Estonia||60 500||71 603||81 703||92 042||101 165||101 165||101 165||101 165|
|Cyprus||31 670||38 928||43 749||49 146||53 499||53 499||53 499||53 499|
|Latvia||90 016||105 368||119 268||133 978||146 479||146 479||146 479||146 479|
|Lithuania||230 560||271 029||307 729||346 958||380 109||380 109||380 109||380 109|
|Hungary||807 366||947 114||1 073 824||1 205 037||1 318 975||1 318 975||1 318 975||1 318 975|
|Malta||3 752||4 231||4 726||5 137||5 102||5 102||5 102||5 102|
|Poland||1 877 107||2 192 294||2 477 294||2 788 247||3 044 518||3 044 518||3 044 518||3 044 518|
|Romania||623 399||729 863||907 473||1 086 608||1 264 472||1 442 335||1 620 201||1 780 406|
|Slovenia||87 942||103 389||117 406||131 537||144 236||144 236||144 236||144 236|
|Slovakia||240 014||280 364||316 964||355 242||388 176||388 176||388 176||388 176|
(Ceilings updated in accordance with the latest amendments)
Member States are to set up a national reserve, which is to be used to grant aid to new farmers and to those deemed to be in special circumstances, and for support measures which are specific to certain sectors or types of production.
Allocation of the single payment
In order to receive a single payment, farmers must have previously received certain direct aid payments. The single payment is calculated on the basis of the aid received by farmers during a reference period (as a general rule 2000, 2001 and 2002, but in certain circumstances 1997, 1998 and 1999 can be regarded as the reference period). The Regulation lists the payments which are taken into account when allocating the single payment and in particular area-based payments and other payments allocated as support (e.g. slaughter premium, special premiums for male cattle and suckler cows).
Each farmer received, in the first year of application of the Single Payment Scheme, “payment entitlements” the total value of which is equal to aid received during the reference period and the number of which is equal to the number of hectares giving rise to aid during the reference period. Then, each year, every payment entitlement related to one hectare of agricultural land qualifies the farmer for a payment entitlement of the same amount. Payment entitlements can be transferred from one farmer to another.
Member States may opt to allocate payments at regional level. In that case, regional ceilings are to be established and divided among the farmers in the region. All payment entitlements in the same region have the same unit value.
Member States have had the option of partially implementing the single payment system. In this case, Member States keep part of the coupled aid and pay it to farmers in the form of a supplementary payment and according to production. These options will disappear in 2012, except for sheep/goats and suckler cows, two productions which may prove to be crucial in order to avoid agricultural land being abandoned.
Other Aid Schemes
Most support schemes will be decoupled and included in the SPS.
|Integrationof coupled aid in the SPS||2010||2011||2012||2013|
|Arable crops area payment||X|
|Hops area aid||X|
|Durum wheat quality premium||X|
|Olive groves aid||X|
|Protein crops premium||OPT||OPT||X|
|Rice specific payment||OPT||OPT||X|
|Nuts area payment||OPT||OPT||X|
|Potato starch production aid||OPT||OPT||X|
|Potato starch premium||X|
|Dried fodder–for processing||X|
|Flax and hemp –for processing||X|
|Transitional soft fruit payment (strawberries, raspberries)||X|
|Transitional FV payment for tomatoes||OPT||X|
|Transitional FV payment other than annual crops||OPT||X|
|Beef special premium||OPT||OPT||X|
|Slaughter premium (bovine animals)||OPT||OPT||X|
|Sheep and goat premiums||OPT|
X = obligatory integration into SPS
OPT = optional integration
It sets out the rules for direct payments made to support farmers under the EU’s common agricultural policy (CAP). These payments are made on the condition that farmers meet strict rules on the health and welfare of people and animals, plant health and the environment — known as cross-compliance.
In December 2017, the EU adopted Regulation (EU) 2017/2393 which amends Regulation (EU) No 1307/2013, as well as other legislation relating to the CAP (Regulations (EU) No 1305/2013 setting up the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development, (EU) No 1306/2013 laying down financing, managing and monitoring rules for the EU agricultural policy, (EU) No 1308/2013 on the common organisation of agricultural markets in the EU and (EU) No 652/2014 on the management of expenditure relating to the food chain, animal health and animal welfare.
Direct payments to farmers are paid through support schemes in each EU country.
EU countries must dedicate a certain proportion of their CAP funding allocation to compulsory support schemes:
- standard per-hectare payments — to distribute support more fairly, all EU countries had to move towards a uniform payment per hectare from 2015 (a ‘basic payment scheme’);
- green payments per hectare — to be granted to farmers for observing practices beneficial for the climate and environment (30% of national funding allocation);
- young farmer per-hectare payment — for farmers no more than 40 years old, setting up for the first time as head of their farm, up to 5 years before claiming support; this payment is available for up to 5 years.
There are also some optional support schemes. EU countries can choose to:
- support smaller farms by paying a higher amount on the first hectares (‘redistributive payment’);
- grant additional payments for areas with natural constraints;
- grant limited amounts of production-related support (‘coupled support’ — payments linked to specific crops or types of livestock) to help agricultural sectors in their own country which are in difficulty;
- offer a simplified scheme for small farmers — an annual payment of up to €1,250.
From 1 January 2018, the new rules contained in Regulation (EU) 2017/2393 came into force and include the following:
- only active farmers (meaning those whose agricultural activity is not insignificant) could be granted direct support. However, in some EU countries, the administration became too burdensome. In particular, claimants operating airports, railway services, waterworks, real estate services, and permanent sport and recreational grounds were considered inactive except if they proved otherwise. Its application has now become voluntary for EU countries;
- some aspects of the rules applying to green payments have been simplified, especially for crop diversification requirements;
- an extension of the permanent grassland definition
- EU countries may decide to include certain shrubs or trees that produce animal feed in permanent grassland where grasses and other herbaceous forage predominate, in the whole or part of their territory;
- they may consider land not ploughed up or used for crop rotation for 5 years or more as a criterion for the classification of permanent grassland;
- young farmers are now able to more easily access all 5 years of payments;
- EU countries’ responsibilities in regard to the production-limiting nature of coupled support are clarified;
- the types of areas of ecological interest (Ecological Focus Areas) are extended to cover areas on which plant varieties such as Miscanthus and Silphium perfoliatum are grown, as well as to land lying fallow for plants that are beneficial for pollinators.