Kerry TD says loan scheme will help farmers tackle Brexit

Kerry TDs have been reacting to a newly launched low-cost Government loan scheme to help farmers deal with the challenge of Brexit.

The €150 million Agri Cashflow Support Loan Scheme will allow farmers to access credit at 2.95 per cent interest.

The loans in this scheme are up to a maximum of €150,000 over a term of up to six years and interest only periods are available.

AIB, Bank of Ireland and Ulster Bank will distribute the loans.

Fine Gael Deputy Brendan Griffin said farmers are experiencing cashflow difficulties due to recent changes in sterling exchange rates and lower commodity prices.

He added the loan scheme will allow farmers to pay more expensive forms of short-term debt such as merchant credit or overdrafts.

Fianna Fail’s John Brassil said the scheme announced in the Budget is a step in the right direction but its rollout has been lethargic at best and over the past three months farmers have been forced to scrimp and save.

Deputy Brassil said the scheme should be provided directly rather than using high street banks and should allow farmers to refinance their existing loans.