1.The Committee has asked the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs for a memorandum explaining what is intended by the phrase “relevant authority” (inserted in to EU Regulations 639/2014 and 641/2014).
2.The Common Agricultural Policy (Rules for Direct Payments) (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 amend:
3.Regulations 639/2014 and 641/2014 are made under the powers in Regulation (EU) No 1307/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing rules for direct payments to farmers under support schemes within the framework of the common agricultural policy (“Regulation 1307/2013”). Regulation 1307/2013 is the Basic Act that lays down the legal framework for direct payments and empowers the Commission to adopt delegated and implementing acts. The regulations made under these powers include Regulation 639/2014, which is the Delegated Act, and Regulation 641/2014, which is the Implementing Act. Accordingly the definitions used in Regulation 1307/2013 flow through to Regulations 639/2014 and 641/2014. For example, the defined term “farmer”, which is defined in Article 4(1)(a) of Regulation 1307/2013, is used in various articles in Regulation 639/2014 and Regulation 641/2014 without further definition (see, for example, Articles 1 to 4 of both regulations, although there are many more examples). The same is true for the defined term “holding” (see, for example, Articles 11 and 14 of Regulation 639/2014 and Article 6 of Regulation 639/2014).
4.The Common Agricultural Policy (Direct Payments to Farmers) (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 (S.I. 2019/207) amend Regulation 1307/2013. More specifically, regulation 3(3)(h) inserts a new definition into Article 4(1) of Regulation 1307/2013 for “relevant authority”. Accordingly “relevant authority” means:
“(i) in relation to England, the Secretary of State;
(ii) in relation to Wales, the Welsh Ministers;
(iii) in relation to Scotland, the Scottish Ministers;
(iv) in relation to Northern Ireland, the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs.”.
5.Given that the definition is inserted into Regulation 1307/2013, the Basic Act, we take the view that it is unnecessary to again define the term because that definition will flow through to Regulations 639/2014 and 641/2014.
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
5 March 2019
Published: 15 March 2019