Update: Agriculture (Wales) Bill, 28 March 2023

Senior Policy Adviser, Fraser McAuley brings us up-to-date on the progress of the Bill in the Senedd.
Haymaking Pembrokeshire

The Agriculture (Wales) Bill completed its second stage in the Senedd last week and will now be discussed in the Plenary session on the 16th May.

In stage 2 there were a wide range of proposed amendments discussed by members of the Senedd Economy, Trade and Rural Affairs (ETRA) committee. CLA Cymru – together with a range of other stakeholders, including the farming unions - supported a number of amendments including widening the scope of the definition of sustainability, and ensuring Welsh Government commit to a multi-annual framework for funding agriculture. While we were disappointed that these amendments were not agreed by the Committee and therefore won’t make it to the next stage, the Welsh Government’s Rural Affairs Minister, Lesley Griffiths, responsible for the Bill, did commit to looking at how to bring some certainty for funding at stage 3, while acknowledging that the UK Government will make the final decision on resourcing the Scheme.

The Committee also examined a number of other amendments on tenancy arrangements. We opposed these proposals and we were pleased to see they were not agreed by the Committee and will not be included in the next stage.

We now await the Plenary debate on 16th May, and for this the CLA team will be working to brief Senedd Members in case of any further amendments that may not be in the interest of the membership.

If you wish to find out more on the progress of the Agriculture (Wales) Bill then please get in touch with fraser.mcauley@cla.org.uk