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NFU Cymru Warns DEFRA On Cost Sharing

by 5m Editor
25 June 2007, at 6:01am

FARMING UK - NFU Cymru President Dai Davies today issued a warning that discussions between DEFRA and representatives of the farming industry on cost and responsibility sharing for animal disease look doomed to failure. The next meeting of the Group is scheduled for Wednesday 27 June in London.

Mr Davies said, "NFU Cymru has made absolutely clear to DEFRA that their plans to impose animal health costs and disease levies on the industry, whilst reneging on their promises to give the industry a far greater share of responsibility for the development and control of animal health policy, is a disastrously backward step.

Mr Davies continued, "We have spent the last six months in discussion on the cost and responsibility sharing agenda and at the eleventh hour, DEFRA have effectively pulled the plug on the whole exercise. In addition, they have made it clear that they intend to proceed on a cost-only basis. This makes a complete nonsense of the six months commitment by the industry, and indeed the devolved administrations, to the work of the Group.

"We have repeatedly stressed that a true partnership between Government and the industry required a great deal of trust, but the latest moves by DEFRA shatter any trust that may have been established!

Mr Davies said, "We work extremely closely with the Welsh Assembly Government who have responsibility for animal health policy, but DEFRA are using their control of the budget for animal health to impose 'cost-only' legislation upon the industry. This is hardly an advert for integrated and meaningful devolved Government.

5m Editor