CAP, COPA-COGECA: A STRONG COMMON AGRICULTURAL POLICY IS VITALIN RUN UP TO EU SUMMIT, COPA-COGECA LAUNCHES NEW REPORT

ripe wheat at sunset. south UkraineWith EU farm incomes less than half the average level and food demand on the rise, Copa-Cogeca launched today a new report explaining Why a Strong Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) budget is needed. What does it deliver? The move comes in the run up to the EU Summit on the future EU budget 2014-20 (MFF) on February 7-8 2013. Copa-Cogeca Sectretary-General Pekka Pesonen said “Agricultural spending is actually less than 1% of public expenditure. Any further cuts in the CAP budget are not acceptable. The Commissions proposal would already mean a 10% cut in the CAP budget and the previous proposals by Council President Mr Van Rompuy would have resulted in huge cuts in direct payments to farmers of up to 30% in some countries, which is not acceptable. It would increase unemployment in the EU rural areas , and risk deepening the current economic crisis. Without the CAP, there would be 27 separate agriculture policies in the 27 member states which would cost governments far more than the CAP does. Agricultural spending must be kept at current levels until 2020 to ensure that we have a viable sector to meet growing food demand and boost growth and employment in EU rural areas. A rapid decision is vital”. Farmers are already being hit by high input costs, with market prices barely covering their costs, as well as extreme volatility, costly regulations and obligations which imports to the EU do not have to meet. Any more cuts are simply not viable. New innovative production technologies are also needed to help enhance productivity in European agriculture and meet growing world food demand which is expected to rise by 70% by 2050. The new report can be found on Copa-Cogecas’ website. Please find below the link to it. http://www.copa-cogeca.eu/Download.ashx?ID=1007133
In addition, Copa-Cogeca will hold on February 6 a high-level meeting in Brussels with around 400 people to press for a strong CAP with a good budget behind it. A major press conference will follow. Copa-Cogeca will be sending a clear, joint message in favour of a strong CAP budget to heads of state and governments, media and EU institutions. Farmers across Europe are united in their call for a strong CAP budget, in response to societys demands for safe, secure,
sustainably produced high quality food supplies at affordable prices. Agriculture is also a key driver to growth and employment in rural areas and has knock on effects in other sectors.

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