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Temporary Suspension of Applications for Targeted Agricultural Modernisation Schemes Pending Outcome of Expenditure Review

The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Mr Simon Coveney TD, today announced the temporary suspension of further applications under the Targeted Agricultural Modernisation Schemes (TAMS) with immediate effect. The Minister said that due to the financial constraints on his Department, particularly for 2012, it would not be prudent to continue to accept new applications for TAMS before clarifying the availability of funds for next year.

"I could not defend a situation in which farmers go to the time and expense of preparing and submitting applications, in the expectation that grant aid would be forthcoming for their project, when there was a question mark over the availability of funding" the Minister said. "A comprehensive review of all expenditure is under way in my Department to ensure maximum effectiveness and efficiency in schemes and service delivery. Pending the outcome of the review, I have taken the decision to temporarily suspend new TAMS applications so that farmers will know where they stand in terms of the availability of funds for next year".

The Targeted Agricultural Modernisation Schemes provide support for investments in the pig and poultry sectors, sheep handling, dairy equipment, rainwater harvesting and bio-energy crops and grant aid is approved under the various measures in phases or tranches. The Minister said that applications already submitted will be processed and approved up to the level of the current tranches of funding. No further applications will be accepted for consideration with effect from today pending a decision on the re-opening of the schemes. Only applications received in the Department by close of business today will be eligible for consideration.

The Minister said that he will be keeping the financial situation under continuous review and that a final decision on the future of the schemes will be made in the context of the Comprehensive Expenditure Review which is under way following the recent Government decision and also the preparation of the 2012 Estimates for his Department.

Date Released: 08 June 2011