Has the starting signal sounded for the next CAP reform?

Yesterday, the Juncker Commission released its third annual Work Programme for 2017. This year’s Work Programme proposes 21 key initiatives as well as a further 18 REFIT proposals intended to improve the quality of existing EU legislation. In addition, the Commission Work Programme identifies 34 priority pending proposals made in the past two years where it seeks swift adoption by the Parliament and Council.

The Work Programme Communication contains two specific references to agricultural policy development. The full paragraph reads as follows:

The Commission will take forward work and consult widely on simplification and modernisation of the Common Agricultural Policy to maximise its contribution to the Commission’s ten priorities and to the Sustainable Development Goals.

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Mitigation potential in EU agriculture

In my previous post on this blog, I noted that the Commission’s impact assessment (IA) accompanying its presentation of the new Effort Sharing Regulation (ESR) proposal concluded that very little additional agricultural mitigation is expected in the period 2021-2030, over and above what is projected to occur under current policies.

Two possible conclusions might be drawn from this finding. One is that the agricultural sector lobby organisations have used their political clout to ensure that the sector is required to do as little as possible to contribute to the EU’s 2030 climate targets. This reaction was advanced by some NGO activists in response to the post.… Read the rest