The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) has welcomed the record uptake of online Single Applications, with 99.53% of farmers submitting their application online before the deadline of midnight on Monday.
The total number of Single Applications received by 15 May 2017 was 24,901, of which 24,783 were submitted via DAERA’s online service. 9,557 farmers switched to online application in 2017.
Welcoming the figures, Jason Foy, Head of Payments at DAERA, said: “It has been a real team effort this year between DAERA and farmers to encourage uptake of online applications. I’m delighted that 99.53% of farmers chose to submit their Single Application online, an increase of 37.53% from 2016.
“Throughout the Single Application window we have been appealing to farmers to ‘Help Us to Help You’ by using our online services. This positive result demonstrates that farmers have recognised the advantages of online application over paper, such as reducing the possibility of simple errors and reducing the time taken to carry out validation checks.
“DAERA staff have assisted more than 3,000 farmers through appointments at DAERA direct offices, in addition to providing telephone and online support. Our digital services team have delivered an online system that is intuitive and easy to use and I would encourage farmers to continue to use the various online tools available to them to aid their businesses.
“The European Commission has instructed Member States to have 100% of land claimed online by 2018. This year’s outcome puts us in a very strong position to meet that target next year.”
Notes to editors:
- The Single Application window opened on 01 March 2017 and closed at midnight on 15 May 2017.
- Applications received between 16 May - 09 June 2017 will be subject to a penalty. Payment will be reduced by 1% for each working day the application is late, except in cases of force majeure or exceptional circumstances. For Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) there is a 3% late claim penalty on top of the 1% if you are applying to the Regional Reserve
- Single Applications received by 15 May 2017 may be amended, before 31 May, to increase or decrease the area claimed, for eg, adding or removing fields, without a financial penalty.
- From 01 June – 09 June: Single Applications already received may also be amended between these dates to increase the area you have claimed, for example, by adding fields, but you will be penalised on the amended fields. DAERA will reduce your payment by 1% for each working day the amendments to your application are late (except in cases of force majeure or exceptional circumstances). For BPS there is an extra 3% late claim penalty on top of the 1% if you are is applying to the regional reserve. You can reduce fields/areas during this period without penalty.
- 09 June 2017 - This is the final date for receiving applications or increasing the area you have claimed on your Single Application. You can still reduce the area you have claimed without penalty, e.g. by removing a field but only if we have not already notified you of a penalty or a planned inspection.
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