Independent verification of ELM building blocks data and SFI/CS payments

Countryside with hill, trees and wooden gate

The aim of this project was to undertake independent verification of the Building Blocks data which underpin the SFI and CS payment rate calculations, a selected number of CS payment rate calculations, and the SFI payment methodology, including compliance with WTO requirements.  The project involved detailed assessment of the budgeted figures, the process/assumptions used in arriving at them, the use of supporting evidence and its quality. We worked collaboratively with the Defra/NE ELM and CS teams, the contractor producing the building block data and payment rate calculations, and other stakeholders. The reports will be forwarded in due course to the European Commission, and as required the WTO. This project built on the previous verification of building blocks data and IF+C calculations which we undertook for NE/Defra in 2011/12 and 2013/14.