IRELAND - Following comments by German Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel, who suggested substantially cutting the CAP and reducing the number of EU commissioners post-Brexit, Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers' Association (ICSA) President Patrick Kent urged the Irish government to be proactive.
Mr Kent said the Irish government should argue for the type of EU that Ireland wants to see emerge in the light of the Brexit referendum.
"There is every danger that various proposals on the future direction of Europe will now emerge, some of which will be very detrimental to our interests and some which will push the EU in a direction that Ireland does not want," he said.
"We have to be proactive now in arguing for maintaining the CAP budget even without the British net contribution. We also need to highlight the reasons for unhappiness amongst farmers.
"Many British farmers voted leave and the lessons from this need to be learned. Key issues are that while the CAP provides support, it also comes with too much red tape and it does not tackle the squeeze on margins.
"A good start would be for the Taoiseach [Irish government] to immediately rebuff the comments of the German Vice Chancellor regarding CAP. We cannot wait for others to decide the future of Europe nor can we stand back from ensuring that the EU/ UK negotiations are sensitive to the special position of Ireland."
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