Government told: Rural areas need period of stability
Farmers need a period of stability after the uncertainty of recent years.
That is the message from Nigel Hollett, the new director at the Welsh Country Landowners’ Association as he unveiled his vision for the rural economy in the year ahead.
CLA Cymru represents more than 3,000 farmers, landowners and rural businesses in Wales.
Mr Hollet said: “The New Year delivers a new decade, a new Government in Westminster and – now that the period of election-purdah is over – the Welsh Government can progress with the necessary announcements to deliver sustainable development in agriculture and the Welsh economy.
“The backbone of the rural economy, politicians and officials must focus on the framework for a prosperous and sustainable future for farming. It includes clarification of our relationship with our EU partners. The Prime Minister has made delivering Brexit his New Year’s Resolution; but delivering the right result for Welsh farming is another challenge.
“Farmers need a period of stability and certainty which enables them to focus and plan ahead. They need to consider the prospect of different types of support and different ways if assessing, planning and delivering them.”
Mr Hollett said the CLA would be looking to work closely with farmers and landowners to help shape their future as the Welsh Government models new ways to support sustainable productivity and meet new expectations for combating climate change and its causes: reducing greenhouse gases, managing air, water and soil-quality and conservation.
“In 2020 I’d like to see greater clarity about investment in innovation and skills in the rural economy,” he said.
“I’d like to see an end to today’s digital divide between those who can access adequate mobile connectivity and superfast broadband. Rural businesses of every type depend on it.
“Our Rural Powerhouse campaign was launched during the General Election, but it’s only just begun. Over 100 Parliamentary candidates in England and Wales signed-up to the CLA’s Rural Powerhouse pledges. Our challenge for 2020 is see some delivery.”