Scotland’s farmer payments’ crisis continues

Councillor Alastair Redman,

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Sir,

A damning report by Audit Scotland has recently revealed Scotland’s farmer payments crisis won’t be sorted until 2018.

Audit Scotland also said: ‘Issues in relation to the SNP’s processing of Common Agricultural Policy payments, continue to have a significant impact.’

The Scottish Government could also face fines of more than £60 million from the EU this year, if it does not process all its payments on time.

Problems with the Scottish Government’s IT system, first emerged as far back as 2015, with major delays, starving the rural economy of hundreds of millions of pounds. Now, shockingly, auditors have published a new report on the fiasco, which it concludes: ‘Has not delivered value for money.’

This ongoing fiasco is crippling Argyll and Bute agriculture and badly damaging our wider rural economy.

Rural Scotland deserves better than this institutional incompetence from the Scottish government.

Alastair Redman,

Islay.