Threat to CAP
Tuesday 05 June 2012
Farmers may end up paying the price of the tug of war between member states over the new EU budgetary framework for 2014-2020, which could hinder entry into force of the new Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). “It is practically certain that we will not be able to implement the reform for 1 January 2014,” said British Agriculture Minister Jim Paice, at a meeting with his fellow ministers in Horsens, Denmark, on 5 June. Virtually all the ministers share that view: it is impossible to get into the specifics, especially the distribution of agricultural support, without having a clear idea of the overall allocation.
“Any delay would affect rural development programmes and may even have an impact on direct support,” warned Commissioner Dacian Ciolos. But countries like the United Kingdom, Germany, France and Spain seem to be in less of a hurry. “We mainly need a good reform,” said Spain’s Miguel Arias Canete. At worst, he added, the system in place would be renewed provisionally, a ‘plan B’ that Ciolos refuses to consider.
Irish Minister Simon Coveney, who will chair the Council at the beginning of 2013, is already considering the possibility of organising an extraordinary summit next February to work out an agreement on the budget as soon as possible.