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Paolo De Castro on the CAP Reform Process

Rose O’Donovan, editor of the excellent Agra-Facts, has interviewed Paolo De Castro, CAP reform veteran and currently holding a key role as Chairman of the European Parliament’s agriculture committee. Worth a watch.

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Implications of the European Council MFF agreement for the agricultural environment

This is a shortened version of a post which was first written for the Institute for International and European Affairs EnvironmentNexus blog From the perspective of the agricultural environment, there are three elements in the European Council conclusions on the EU’s Multi-annual Financial Framework on 7-8 February which should be noted. The first element is [...]

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What the proposed MFF has for agriculture?

A new budget for 2014-2020 has been agreed by the Council yesterday, suggesting that the CAP will not change remarkably in the future.

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Will the MFF be agreed this week?

Even if the European Council agree on a new 7-year EU budget this week, approval by the Parliament is not a foregone conclusion.

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The MFF numbers – where we stand

Use this MFF ready reckoner to evaluate the proposal put by van Rompuy to European Council leaders later this week.

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The development interest in the CAP reform debate

COMAGRI voted against including a mechanism to monitor the impact of the CAP on developing countries, this should be included in the Parliament’s negotiating mandate when the plenary votes in March.

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Who is happy with EP COMAGRI’s recent vote?

It seems that the majority of stakeholders are not happy with the latest vote of the European Parliaments agriculture committee.

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Following the negotiations on the Direct Payments Regulation

As regards the direct payments regulation, both legislative institutions are converging on a similar set of proposals and no issue sticks out which might cause real difficulties when the trilogue negotiations begin.

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The significance of Rule 70 for CAP reform negotiations

To understand the possible timing of the CAP reform negotiations it is crucial to understand the new decision-making process under the Lisbon Treaty involving both the Parliament and the Council. In a recent post, I set out my understanding of the process, based on the assumption shared by most commentators (for example, see this Brussels [...]

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Forum on CAP reform

Series of papers on the CAP reform process provide excellent overview of key issues

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Welcome to the Irish Presidency

The Irish Presidency faces an uphill battle to reach agreement on CAP reform during its six-months tenure.

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Cyprus Presidency progress report on CAP reform – direct payment controversies

Discussion on Cyprus Presidency CAP reform progress report at Agricultural Council this week will highlight divisions on internal convergence and greening in the direct payments regulation.

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Correction: Rural development funds allocation

There has been much interest in the provenance of the figures on the allocation of rural development funding between member states which I discussed in this post earlier this week. In the post I said that these were figures circulated by Herman van Rompuy during the special European Council meeting to discuss the MFF on [...]

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Understanding the ‘active farmer’ debate

Proposed definition of active farmers restores link between production and payments.

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Rural development funds allocation hits new member states

What new member states gain through convergence of Pillar 1 payments they could lose in Pillar 2 allocations under the latest Van Rompuy proposals.

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EIP: has the role of knowledge in agriculture been rediscovered?

Brussels EIP stakeholders event on 19th November 2012: support for new agricultural innovation networking with many open questions about the implementation.

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Council debate on greening raises more questions than answers

Watching the videostream of the Agricultural Council’s greening debate held earlier this week was a rather depressing experience. There is something profoundly wrong with a decision-making system where food and agricultural policy is determined solely by agricultural ministers who speak on behalf of their farmers only, with only the Commission present to even vaguely represent [...]

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Nobody cares what we spend our money on

It seems that everyone wants to spend more and more without questioning the effectiveness of spending.

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No decision on MFF budget at first attempt

European Council leaders fail to agree Van Rompuy’s second MFF proposal which reinstated a large share of the CAP Pillar 1 reductions previously suggested.

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Strengthening the role of young farmers in the future CAP

The European Council of Young Farmers (CEJA) has recently launched a campaign “Future Food Farmers”, calling for generational renewal in the European agriculture.

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MFF baton passes to Van Rompuy: further cuts proposed compared to Commission proposal

Further cuts in agricultural budget proposed in Van Rompuy’s MFF proposal for the European Council.

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The US Farm Bill: Lessons for CAP Reform ?

The US Farm Bill debate has important consequences for the EU. But it should not be a source of inspiration for the MEPs…

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The nitty-gritty of CAP reform: the case of new entrants

David Barnes is the Scottish Government’s Deputy Director for Agriculture and Rural Development. He sits with his Minister around the Council of Agricultural Ministers’ table as the negotiations on the shape of the CAP2020 take place and, more interestingly, he blogs about it. His blog gives an insider’s view and a personal perspective on what [...]

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European Parliament postpones vote on CAP reforms

New European Parliament timetable for CAP reform decisions puts 2014 implementation in doubt.

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Cyprus Presidency issues second revised MFF negotiating box

Agricultural spending escapes lightly in new revision of the MFF negotiating box which shows where budget reductions in the 2014-2020 would fall.

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October Agricultural Council continues CAP debate

Agricultural Ministers continued to grind through their discussions on CAP2020 issues under the Cypriot Presidency at the Agricultural Council meeting on 22 and 23 October earlier this week.

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What potential agroforestry holds for the future CAP?

A recent conference organised in the European Parliament brought agroforestry to the heart of the discussion on the CAP reform.

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Farmer-friendly ideas on greening

COPA-COGECA comes out with new ideas on greening but they help little to tackle its fundamental problem.

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How close is the EU to agreement on spending one trillion euro?

Absence of figures in the MFF negotiating box as the endgame approaches suggests governments not yet ready for the necessary compromises.

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OECD reports EU farm transfers at lowest level ever

OECD figures show a continued slight fall in EU transfers to farmers as measured by the Producer Support Estimate indicator.

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Further thoughts on CAP greening

New paper provides useful summary of the CAP greening debate to date.

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Cyprus Presidency proposes CAP budget cut in next MFF

Cyprus Presidency recognises for first time that Commission’s proposed CAP budget is unrealistic.

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COMAGRI CAP2020 amendments published

Links to the COMAGRI amendments to the Commission’s draft regulations on CAP post 2013.

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New opportunities to visualise agricultural data

Data visualisation software from Google helps to see trends in agricultural data.

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Discarding food vs. starving people – Inefficient and immoral?

Food waste is now a hotly discussed issue, but recent studies greatly overstate the size of the problem and the extent to which reducing food waste would help the world’s hungry.

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Perspectives on the CAP2020 debate

Three recent presentations summarise the state of the CAP reform debate at this point.

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COMAGRI Chair calls for maintenance of CAP budget in real terms

Draft COMAGRI report calls to maintain CAP spending in real terms in the 2014-2020 MFF period..

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How much progress has been made on agreeing the 2014-2020 MFF?

Only limited progress has been made in narrowing the divergences of view on the EU’s medium-term financial framework. Time is running out and the stakes are high.

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What role for agriculture in rural development?

The CAP is partially justified because of its contribution to ‘viable rural communities’ but the relationship between agriculture and non-agricultural development is as likely to be competitive as complementary.

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Is selling ‘experiences’ a potential growth path for European agriculture?

Does the ‘experience economy’ in which consumers pay premium prices for products and services that provide additional intangible ‘experiences’ constitute a viable growth path for European agriculture?

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Old interests in the New Member States

It seems that the New Member States want to further water down the original proposals of the Commission.

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Eurobarometer food security survey

What are we to make of the findings in the latest Eurobarometer survey of EU public opinion on Europeans’ attitudes to their own food security?

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The European Parliament report on the measurement of farm support

A variety of estimates of the level of farm support circulate. Many of them rely on creative accounting. For example, during the recent farm bill debate in the US Senate on C-Span television, a Senator claimed that the EU subsidized its farmers seventeen times more than the US, quoting as “evidence” that farm subsidies accounted [...]

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Gunfight for CAP Budget Money

The CAP budget negotiations have started to heat up, negotiators have formed the clubs of like-minded countries. Also this time negotiations are mostly a (gun)fight for preserving or improving the net position of Member States.

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The EU as a destabilising force in world grain markets

The EU’s attempts to protect livestock farmers during the 2007-08 price spike helped to destablise world grain prices for poor country consumers.

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Negotiations on future CAP have speeded up

Despite the hot summer across Europe, the previous weeks were quite busy in Brussels. On June 18th and 19th 2012, the European Parliament’s Agricultural Committee Rapporteurs presented their four draft reports on the reform on the Common Agricultural Policy, while one week on, on June 25th, these draft plans were confronted with national interests (based [...]

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Co-financing rates in Pillar 2

The design of co-financing rates will influence total public spending on Pillar 2 measures in the next programming period.

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Paper on CAP greening

Links to a recent paper and report I have written on CAP greening

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A mandatory minimum spending requirement on agri-environment-climate change measures in Pillar 2?

Attempts to water down the mandatory spending limits on agri-environment-climate measures should be resisted.

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What Rio+20 has for the CAP?

20 years have passed since the Earth Summit was organised in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. The United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD) will also be held in Rio this week and the apparent question comes what has happened in 20 years time. Almost nothing, many argue, as global sustainability is more on the [...]

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