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After tractor protests: Bundestag to decide on relief for farmers

After tractor protests: Bundestag to decide on relief for farmers
After tractor protests: Bundestag to decide on relief for farmers

After great outrage over the end of diesel subsidies, politicians had promised farmers other relief measures. These are now to be sealed.

Following the nationwide farmers’ protests against the end of diesel subsidies in winter, the Bundestag (11.05 a.m.) is to approve promised relief for farmers. The traffic light coalition’s legislative plans include tax relief for fluctuating profits, for example due to the weather. The position of farmers in the supply chain up to the retail trade is to be strengthened. New incentives for voluntary eco-services are also to be introduced.

Federal Agriculture Minister Cem Özdemir told the German Press Agency: “Our farmers are motivated to do more for the environment and species protection – but it must also pay off for them.” This will now be implemented with two new organic regulations that apply to both conventional and organic farms. “We are increasing the budget of the organic regulations without making any cuts in basic income support,” said the Green politician. “In the future, this will primarily benefit dairy farms that keep their cows on pasture.”

New environmental incentives

Specifically, two new eco-schemes are to be introduced from 2026 that reward voluntary environmental services – one for grazing cows and another to improve biodiversity. In return, there will be no cuts in the basic payments from EU agricultural funding. It is also now to be determined that an EU environmental requirement on fallow land can be further suspended.

The coalition had promised farmers relief after their protests. This includes a reduction in income tax, from which the industry is to benefit with an average of 50 million euros per year, according to the draft law. Companies should be able to offset results from good and bad years. This should mitigate the effect that a higher tax rate applies to higher incomes. The reduction, which was limited to 2022, should now be available to farmers until 2028.

In addition, the position of farmers in the supply chain from the field to the supermarkets is to be strengthened. For example, it is planned to include certain suppliers in protection against unfair business practices not just temporarily, but permanently.

Source: Stern

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