Weakening the CAP reform again

The EU agriculture Council and the European Parliament want to weaken a proposal for reform that us already disappointing in terms of the way it addresses the challenges we are facing. Yet what is at stake is the farmers’ future, consumers/taxpayers food, the countryside and the environment.

The European Commission’ proposed legislation, although it remains within a destructive framework of market deregulation , does propose some positive notions in the future CAP on the issues of the goals of food security, sustainable management of resources and territorial balance. Although the food security objective is translated in the proposal into the need to improve companies’ competitiveness, the Commission has nonetheless proposed the capping and a better distribution of direct payments between Member States and within each Member State, mandatory measures for the environment, and has taken small farms into account.

After hearing of the proposals presented on 18-19 June by the reporters of the agriculture committee of the European Parliament, the European Coordination Via Campesina (ECVC) notes the following points :

« The European Parliament, as the Council, appears to be working hard to weaken the proposals », declared Geneviève Savigny, member of the Coordination committee of ECVC.

ECVC however welcomes the political courage of Michel Dantin, reporter for the “markets” part, of moving towards more regulation of markets and sectors. Regulation prevents problems, price volatility, more than insurance that acts after crises have occurred and that may then be very costly to taxpayers and farmers.

But ECVC has also noted with disappointment the proposals made by the reporter for “direct payments” of abolishing capping for companies and cooperatives, of moderating the convergence of direct payments at national level, of making the specific payment to small farms optional for the Member States, of decreasing the importance of greening- by linking it to only the 30% of direct payments – and of excluding untrustworthy national certifications from the greening.

On “rural development”, the reporter maintains the risk management in this pillar although it has nothing to do with rural development. By making totally private co-funding of rural development programs possible, there is a risk that poor regions could be subjected to a financial logic that is far from public interest.

The European Coordination Via Campesina expects the elected representatives of our democracies to take citizens’ expectations into account in reorienting the CAP towards the needs and, above all to provide the means for access to healthy and sustainable food for all, respect for the environment, and preservation of agricultural and rural employment.

Contact : Geneviève Savigny +33 625551687