15 April: Ciolos wants to hear from YOU!

Better cancel that early summer holiday. There are just two months to contribute to the European Commission’s latest public debate on the future of the CAP.
The EU’s agriculture commissioner, Dacian Ciolos, launched the debate on Monday, unveiling an exciting new website where “stakeholders” are encouraged to share their thoughts about structure and objectives of the CAP after 2012. But hurry: the website will be open for contributions until June 2010.
“The Common Agricultural Policy is not just a matter for experts,” Ciolos said. “It’s a policy for all Europeans.” Quite so, one was tempted to add. We’re paying for it.
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How much is enough?

The CAP has to respond to new challenges, and thus it needs more funding. At the very least, and more realistically, the current budget must be preserved. That is a common line of reasoning. It is also a surprisingly simple rule-of-thumb considering the eye-watering annual budget of EUR 55 billion. … Read the rest

EP draft report: Whereas all this is nonsense

The EP own-initiative report on the post-2013 CAP is taking shape as a new draft has become available (dated 24.3.2010). Though it is better packaged, and sexed-up with a ‘green growth’ tag, the content is just as dull and conservative as the earlier draft. The report captures the intellectual deficiency of the CAP-insider bubble.

The draft report suggests 5 ‘key building blocks’: area-based direct income support, climate change mitigation payments, payments to areas with natural handicaps, payments for biodiversity and environmental protection, and green growth subsidies with a focus on renewable energy. The first two payments are to be fully financed by the EU, and the other three co-financed by the member states.… Read the rest