The FUW has given a cautious welcome to the Welsh Government’s review of responses to the Brexit and our Land consultation as a step towards recognising the threats and opportunities both Brexit and changes to rural support could bring.
“We welcome the fact that the Welsh Government appears to have taken on board many of the concerns raised by the FUW,” said FUW President Glyn Roberts. We now hope that the next consultation will mark a further move towards recognising the dangers to our communities and economy of moving rapidly towards untried and untested approaches that could be the most radical to be introduced since the Second World War.”
Since the June 2016 eU Referendum, the FUW had repeatedly emphasised the need for any new proposals to be thoroughly analysed, modelled and piloted before any final decision was made about rural support in a post- Brexit world.
The union has also highlighted that any major decisions should be informed by knowledge and considered analysis of the post-Brexit economic landscape and trading environment for agriculture.
“We have always recognised that there are opportunities to make significant improvements to the current policy to better deliver jobs, prosperity, environmental goods and a host of other benefits,” said Mr Roberts.
“There are all sorts of inventive mechanisms by which this might be done, as well as decades old concepts such as payments for public goods, and many of these are being considered by the eU as they develop their own reform proposals.”
In its response to the Brexit and our Land consultation, the FUW had advocated the creation of a Policy Reform Group responsible for the creation of a ‘roadmap’ which would set out how current policies might be carefully evolved into schemes which better meet all of Wales’ Wellbeing Goals, while minimising risks of undesirable consequences.
“We still believe that this is the best approach and the FUW is committed to working with Welsh Government to achieve what is best for our nation.”