Categories: World

EU farmers concerned at proposed agricultural budget cuts

Farmers across the EU are reportedly calling for the EU Commission not to implement any cuts in the bloc’s agricultural…

The commission recently released a reflections paper that offers proposals for the restructuring of the EU’s spending from 2020, including spending on the region’s agricultural sector.

Reacting to the release of the paper, EU agricultural union, Copa and Cogeca (CopaCogeca), said that any future cuts to the region’s Common Agricultural Policy spending to the 28 member states would threaten farmers’ competitiveness, growth, job creation and their ability to meet environmental protection targets.

“We call on the commission, members of the European Parliament, and ministers not to make any further cuts in agriculture spending. [EU] farmers’ incomes are already only 40% of average earnings, and have fallen by 20% in the past four years,” said CopaCogeca’s secretary-general, Pekka Pesonen.

The EU’s 2014 to 2020 budget for agriculture, rural development, fisheries, and environment is €420 billion (R6,3 trillion). Seventy percent of this consists of direct payments to farmers.

“This income support partially fills the gap between agricultural income and comparable income for other economic sectors. The most recent reform of this policy introduced major changes to the system of direct payments, targeted to address the particular needs of young farmers and smaller farms, specific sectors or regions in difficulties, and the environment,” the reflections paper said.

CopaCogeca reported that options currently on the table for agricultural spending cuts included capping direct aid payments to larger farming operations in the bloc, and using national co-funding to fund any shortfalls in direct payments from the EU to farmers.

“But Copa and Cogeca will fight to ensure that there are no spending cuts. The [EU] agriculture sector also faces many more challenges like climate events [and] natural disasters, which other sectors do not have,” the agricultural union said.

The finalising of the commission’s budget will reportedly be debated sometime over September and November 2018.

Recent Posts

Indigenous livestock perfect for small-scale farmers

Ross Rayner and his father, Roger, farm 40 Nguni cows and 35 Bosvelder-type ewes on 250ha in the Mankazana Valley…

11 hours ago

Researchers urged to get out into the field

More than 250 delegates are attending the annual Combined Congress of soil, crop production, weed and horticultural sciences, underway at…

12 hours ago

Praise for teamwork in containing foot-and-mouth outbreak

The rapid response by both government and the private sector to the recent foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) outbreak in the Vhembe…

13 hours ago

Homeland consolidation: a forerunner of land reform?

Zimbini Coka, a junior lecturer at the University of the Free State’s Department of Agricultural Economics, visited areas that became…

1 day ago

‘Parts of the Free state must be declared a disaster area’

The Free State consists of many economic sectors, but agriculture is the most important in terms of food security for…

2 days ago

White horses and black bulls

Camargue horses are used to manage the feral black cattle herds in the salty marshes of the Rhône River Delta…

3 days ago

This website uses cookies.