Revenue aware weather may hit cashflow
Farmers and other businesses should make contact with Revenue if they are facing difficulties in making timely payment of tax.

New collector-general at Revenue, Joe Howley, on Tuesday advised businesses experiencing or expecting cashflow challenges as a result of the severe weather to engage early with Revenue.

“Revenue understands the temporary cashflow difficulties that can arise for businesses from exceptional events like the recent severe weather event and how this can impact on the timely payment of tax,” Howley said, a day after taking up the senior position in the organisation.

“When these cashflow-related challenges arise or are expected to arise for businesses, then early engagement with us is key to being able to minimise the stress and anxiety for those concerned,” he said.

We are generally able to arrive at an accommodation

“We are generally able to arrive at an accommodation that gets them successfully beyond the payment pressure point and able to focus on running their business.”

“We understand that the likes of severe weather related events can have particular location and sector specific impacts, which are not generally applicable. That is why a ‘one size fits all’ approach would not be appropriate, and why the early and one-to-one engagement that we encourage is so important.”

Business owners, including farmers, who are facing cash flow difficulties and related tax payment difficulties due to weather disruption should contact the collector-general’s office on 1890 20 30 70 to agree mutually suitable payment arrangements, he said.

Read more

Bank of Ireland creates Storm Emma fund

Farmers begin to count the cost of Storm Emma

Full coverage: Storm Emma

EU leaders warn of no-deal Brexit
The House of Lords continues to defy the British Government's will on Brexit, as the EU draw a line on the sand on possible final outcomes.

EU leaders have warned member states to prepare for a “no-deal” Brexit, which would have a catastrophic effect on Irish agriculture.

The UK government was again defeated in a vote on how parliament should approve any final Brexit agreement. A joint statement from the EU and UK released in Brussels on Tuesday, confirmed that “serious issues remain on the border backstop”.

This is in relation to the arrangement agreed last December that would minimise border disruption between the Republic and Northern Ireland. The UK government is looking at how this might be extended to the wider UK to avoid a border in the Irish sea but this idea is not gaining much support in Brussels.

Speaking in Vienna, EU lead negotiator Michel Barnier said “we need more realism in what is possible and what is not outside the EU” and again emphasising that it was not possible to “maintain the benefits of the current relationship while leaving the EU framework”.

Next week’s Council of Ministers is likely to hear that the Irish border issue has not been resolved, and will probably be pushed back until October’s Council. This is despite June having been declared as the deadline for resolving the backstop arrangement between the UK and EU.

It is likely to create a pressure cooker atmosphere at the October council with the concern for Irish farmers that the Taoiseach will be forced to accept a compromise on last December’s agreement.

The uncertainty of a Mercosur agreement being close to conclusion remains. Koen Dillen of the European Commission’s DG Agriculture stated a deal is now extremely likely as member states look at “the bigger picture”, with no timeline.

Commissioner for Agriculture Phil Hogan insisted the ball is in the court of the Mercosur countries. He said negotiations are nowhere near reaching resolutions on the policy issues raised by the EU: “There is a long way to go in terms of convincing the Mercosur countries of what needs to be done to secure a deal.”

Read more

Selling of CAP begins

Milk prices creep up for May
Keyy and Aurivo up prices as others cut top-ups to farmers.

Last Friday Kerry announced it was increasing its milk price for May by 1c/l after other processors had pulled support payments. Lakeland cut its support payment and held its base price of 30.15c/l excluding VAT for May supplies. Glanbia cut its co-op top-up from 2c/l to 1c/l, meaning its farmers will receive 28.5c/l.

Carbery followed suit, cutting 1c/l from its support payment. Arrabawn, Dairygold and Lac Patrick pulled support payments, but Dairygold increased its base price by 1c/l.

Aurivo increased its base price by 0.5c/l, which is the first Aurivo base price increase since September. Following the large tender of SMP and butter this week, IFA’s Tom Phelan has called on milk processors to reflect the positive commodities trade with a strong milk price.

“The price reached by butter and SMP in the auction, in combination, would return an Irish milk price equivalent of 33.5c/l including VAT, after deduction of a nominal 5c/l processing cost,” Phelan said.

The ICMSA has called on processors to use the Ornua Purchase Price Index which it says “translates directly across to 31.4c/l and that is the benchmark that we would draw attention to now: who’s at that mark, who’s ‘north’ of it and whose ‘south’ of that price”.