HC Deb 30 April 2004 vol 420 cc1345-6W
Mr. Whittingdale

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will make a statement on the new requirements which will be imposed by the 2007 EU Rural Development Regulation. [168036]

Alun Michael

The European Commission is expected to publish legislative proposals on EU rural development spending later this year. The United Kingdom's position on the draft regulation will be developed in discussion with the devolved Administrations in Scotland and Wales, and with the Northern Ireland Administration, and following consultation with stakeholders. We hope to see a significant simplification in comparison with the current rural development regulation and a greater focus on rural development in general.

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