I have said many times in the past that EU land designation is putting a huge burden on farmers and land owners, and letters being sent out by banks to farmers saying they will not accept designated lands as security is proof of that fact. It is past time that the Government acted on this matter or else farmers deserve to be compensated for somethng that they had nothing to do with in the first place.
Farmers are going into banks trying to raise money to improve or extend their holdings but they are receiving letters like the one that I have here today which says that designated land will be be accepted as security. The facts are that the designation of land by the EU according to their regulations, and which were adopted by Ireland, is preventing farners from earning their livelehood and it cannot be tolerated. This will increase the flight from the land aand it is a major disincentive to small farmers in particular.
Everyone has an equal right to make a living out of the land they own, yet land that was designated by the EU with the blessing of the Irish Government and done without the consent of 99% of the owners of that land, is rendering the land worthless. I am sending the letter that I have here to the Ministers for Finance, Agriculture, Rural Afairs and Arts Culture and The Gaelitacht. because we need immediate action on this important issue which is affecting so many small farmers throughout the country.
If farners are not able to carry on their business because of land designation then surely they are entitled to compensation for the burden that has been placed on them. I am asking that the Government stand up and be counted on this important matter and defend the rights of the small family farmers throught the country. I am also calling on farmers throughout the country to rally together because if this plea falls on deaf ears it will have to be tackled in another way.

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