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LFASS loan announced

The Scottish Government has today announced that hill farmers and crofters are to be offered a nationally funded loan for the Less Favoured Area Support Scheme 2017.

Eligible hill farmers and crofters will be offered a loan of up to 90 per cent of their LFASS entitlement, with payments beginning in April.

Announcing the scheme at the annual NFUS AGM, earlier today, Friday, Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing said: “I understand how important LFASS payments are to farmers and crofters in our most remote and marginalised areas, and that is why, we are again making available LFASS loans.

“I am delivering on the commitment I made last year to establish a loan scheme if I judged that this would be the best way to provide financial certainty to LFASS claimants. While we are making good progress in our handling of LFASS2017 scheme payments, and are on track to commence payments earlier than we have done in previous years, I want to offer as much certainty as I can right now.

“While this loan scheme will inject up to £55 million into some of our most vulnerable and remote areas, providing much-needed financial security in the months ahead, I want to reassure farmers and crofters that this loan offer does not take away funding from any public services. It is theirs and they should have it.

“I have been clear that my priority is and will continue to be to protect and grow our rural economy and would therefore encourage eligible farmers and crofters to strongly consider taking up the offer of a loan.”

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