How to allocate EU funds more flexibly
Direct payment schemes and payment entitlements
In a significant move towards simplification, member states or regions that currently operate either a regionalised or a hybrid system of payments (and therefore already partly meet the aims of the reform) will be able to maintain their payment entitlements.
Much-needed certainty will be provided to member states that apply the single area payment scheme (Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia) by a confirmation that their payment systems can continue until 2020. These countries may also decide to continue to grant transitional national aid to farmers and sectors which were eligible for it in 2013. In 2015, the amount available for farmers will correspond to 75% of the previous sector-specific budget and will be reduced by 5% each year until 2020, when the support scheme will be phased out.
Flexibility between pillars
Member states will be able to transfer up to 15% of their annual national ceilings for direct payments (Pillar 1) to support measures under the rural development programming (Pillar 2).
At the same time, member states will be able to make available up to 15%, or in case of countries where the level of direct support remains lower than 90% of EU average (Bulgaria, Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden and the UK), up to 25%, of funds originally intended for rural development programmes to the direct payments budget.