The Council adopted a progress report on the reform of the common agricultural policy (CAP). The Irish presidency will follow the dossiers in the first half of 2013.

Common agricultural policy reform – progress report

Member states broadly welcomed the progress report and overall considered it as a fair and accurate reflection of the debate in the Council, which would lay the foundations for the next steps in the process under the Irish Presidency. They also noted that the next Presidency must look more in-depth at issues raised in discussions by the previous Presidency. Many delegations commented on issues of importance to them, particularly in relation to internal convergence of direct payments and greening.

Some Member States pointed out the close link between debates on the CAP reform and an agreement on the Multi-Annual Financial Framework (MFF) expected at the beginning of 2013.

This report highlights the progress achieved during the second half of 2012 on the CAP reform proposals. It has been drawn up under the responsibility of the Presidency on the basis of the positions expressed within the Council and its preparatory bodies during this semester.

The report indicates the main amendments suggested to the Commission proposals on which the Presidency has noted broad support from delegations. The Presidency’s suggested amendments
to resolve a number of issues raised by delegations, particularly with a view to ensuring that future CAP legislation is workable in practice and can be implemented in a cost-effective manner.

The Council has made clear several times its determination that the reform should deliver real simplification of the system. For each of the proposals this report also highlights the key issues which remain outstanding as at December 2012, including issues contained in the negotiating box for heading 2 of the Multi-Annual Financial Framework (MFF).

The report distinguishes between three categories of issues:

  1. issues on which there is broad support among delegations for the amendments suggested by the Presidency to the Commission proposals (with amendments taking into account accession of Croatia as of 1st July 2013);
  2. issues which remain outstanding as at December 2012;
  3. issues which are included in the negotiating box of the MFF (Heading 2) and which the European Council will ultimately decide upon.

The main outstanding issues are the penalties and publication of beneficiaries.

Land Parcel Identification System (LPIS), Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF), common provisions regulation, the principle of no double funding, and the insertion of “permanent crops” into the footnote to Annex II have been identified as other outstanding issues.

Text of the progress report

Open letter to the Ministers on 27 November 2012

In its open letter, the European Public Health and Agriculture Consortium (EPHAC) – of which EPHA is a member – sent a message to the Ministers to urge them to recognise a public health dimension of European food, farming and rural development policy
Open Letter to EU Ministers of Agriculture and Rural Development

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