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EU claims back 180 mn euros in farm aid

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Half of EU member states will have to pay back millions in farm aid, including Britain and Poland, because they did not follow the rules, the European Commission said on Tuesday.

The Commission, the European Union's executive arm, named 14 countries which owed in total about 180 million euros ($235 million) for various infringements, chiefly that of ensuring aid payments are tied to farmers' actual land.

Britain will have to repay about 40.4 million euros over this land mapping requirement and another 18.6 million euros for shortcomings in allocating entitlements, it said.

Poland owes 39.2 million euros and Denmark 11.5 million euros, it added.

The Commission said it has to ensure that the 28 member states make correct use of funds provided under the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), the EU farm support system which accounts for around a third of all the bloc's spending.

It said that because of repayments already made, Tuesday's action covers some 169 million euros owed by Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Ireland, Greece, Spain, France, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Hungary, Poland, Slovenia, Finland and the United Kingdom.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130813/eu-claims-back-180-mn-euros-farm-aid