The euro exchange rate for calculating Basic Payment Scheme 2019 payments has been set.

The rate, an average of the European Central Bank exchange rates across the month of September, will be €1 = £0.89092, representing a small fall on 2018.

Director of Policy, Jonnie Hall said: “The sustained lift in the exchange rate used to calculate support delivered through Scotland’s Basic Payment Scheme reflects long-term weakness in the value of Sterling against other currencies – a process that started after the decision to leave Europe was taken in June 2016.
“As is now the norm, the 2019 rate is based on the average exchange rate across the whole month of September.  The decrease of 0.21 per cent this year matches a similar, small fall of the same scale in 2018 but follows significant lifts of five per cent and 17 per cent in 2017 and 2016 respectively.
“Traditionally, a weak sterling is good news for support payments and should strengthen the competitiveness of UK exports, but the downside can be higher priced imported inputs such as fertiliser, animal feed and machinery. 
“This year, the uncertainty being generated by the very real possibility that we could crash out of Europe without a deal means we would face the worst of all worlds. 
“That would lead to disrupted access to Europe for our goods; a crippling tariff schedule that would hit exports while handing a competitive advantage to some imports and high costs of imported inputs maintained.  
“The good news is that applications to the first round of Scottish Government loan scheme letters closed on Friday and this new exchange rate will be factored in to the 95 percent BPS/Greening awards expected to arrive in bank accounts soon. 
“That valuable cash injection into the rural economy should eases cash flow worries and allows bills to be settled and purchases to be made as we move into a very uncertain winter.”