Photo: Molly Quell

Voluntary farmer buyout schemes aimed at reducing nitrogen emissions could violate European Union competition regulations.

NRC sources say Brussels is concerned that the MGA2 scheme, which provides financial compensation to farmers to reduce dairy, poultry and pig farming near natural areas, could amount to illegal state aid. ing.

For the most part, European Union regulations prevent governments from providing financial support to private companies over concerns that the funds will distort markets across the bloc.

new program

Nature and Nitrogen Minister Christianne van der Wal said the MGA2 program was “very attractive” when it was introduced in March.

This will replace the current MGO program, which will expire in the next few weeks. That plan failed completely. The NRC reported earlier this year that he hadn’t accepted a single purchase deal.

moving abroad

The problem stems from the fact that farmers who accept acquisitions can use the money to set up agribusinesses in other EU member states such as Hungary and Poland. Brussels is worried that this will put local farmers out of business.

The acquisition is the biggest component of the government’s plan to reach its 2030 goal of reducing nitrogen emissions. The Cabinet has set aside 24.3 billion euros for him to tackle the crisis. About $7.5 billion of that is going to buy farmers.

What’s all the fuss about nitrogen in the Netherlands?

MGA2 has not yet been submitted to the European Commission for official inspection, according to the Ministry of Agriculture. Meanwhile, the government has extended his MGO program until December.

hookstra controversy

Yesterday, parliamentarians lashed out at Foreign Minister Wopke Hoekstra for his remarks that the coalition’s 2030 deadline to cut nitrogen emissions was “unacceptable”. He said it could be lowered, and faced backlash from his coalition partners and environmental groups.

Congress agreed to shelve the issue for three weeks, and government mediator Johan Remkes, who has chaired consultations with farmers and other stakeholders on the nitrogen plan, said before commenting further. Reports can be created.

If the buyback package fails, the NRC warns it could lead to forced purchases of farms.

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