The Common Agricultural Policy after 2013 - Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee Contents

5  The Commission's Communication: the CAP towards 2020

83.  The Commission launched the debate on CAP reform through a Communication published on 18 November 2010 entitled The CAP towards 2020: Meeting the food, natural resources and territorial challenges of the future.[127]

84.  The Communication sets out the challenges and the objectives for the post-2013 CAP followed by three options for future reform. Option 2 is the only one that is considered in any detail and is clearly the preferred option. This option outlines moderate reform to Pillar 1 payments while retaining the basic two pillar structure and the existing market measures (Box 5). Option 1, or enhanced status quo, proposes retaining the existing structure but altering the distribution of direct payments to address the issue of equity between Member States. Dr Moss describes this as the "the fallback option if agreement cannot be reached on Option 2".[128] Option 3, the radical reform option, envisages phasing out the Single Payment Scheme and most market measures while strengthening environment and climate change measures. The CLA describes this as the British/Swedish vision and notes it has "plainly commanded no general support despite being on offer for five years".[129]
Box 5: The Commission's proposals for the future CAP—Option 2

Direct Payments:

  • More equitable distribution between Member States
  • New design consisting of four components
    • a basic payment
    • additional payment for agri-environment activities ('greening')
    • additional payment for farmers in areas of specific natural constraints
    • voluntary coupled support component for specific sectors and regions
  • New support scheme for small farms.
  • Capping of the basic payment modified by consideration of salaried labour
  • Simplification of cross-compliance rules
  • Market Measures:
  • Retain as a safety net in case of price crisis but consider extending existing measures to other products
  • Policy tools to improve the functioning of the food chain

Rural Development:

  • Focus support on the environment, climate change, innovation and restructuring and strengthen local/regional approach
  • Strengthened risk management tool-kit including an income stabilisation tool
  • Possible redistribution of funds more objectively among Member States

85.  The European Agriculture and Fisheries Council published its conclusions on the Commission's Communication in March 2011; however five Member States (UK, Sweden, Denmark, Malta, Latvia and Lithuania) refused to support those conclusions.[130]

86.   A report from the European Parliament is currently being discussed by the Agriculture and Rural Development Committee. A resolution is expected to be voted on in a plenary meeting of the European Parliament in early June 2011. The Commission is expected to produce draft legislative proposals and a further Communication in autumn 2011.

127   COM(2010)672/5, November 2010 Back

128   Ev 124 Back

129   Ev 114 Back

130   Council of the European Union, Presidency conclusions on the communication from the Commission: The CAP towards 2020: meeting the food, natural resources and territorial challenges of the future, 3077th Agriculture and Fisheries Council meeting, 17 March 2011,; "Majority of Member States support strong CAP", Europolitics, 18 March 2011. Back

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