Snippet data - viewing only, no editing possible


Label

Field name

Field value


Sitting_Date

03/14/2013 12:00:00 AM


Sitting_Forum


Snippet Ref No

SnippetRefNo

S00400

Selected Quill

SnippetType

1

Saved Quill

SnippetType_C4D


Selected Quill

SnippetType_1

1

Speaker Name

IndxSpeakerName

Coveney, Simon

Business Category

IndxMainHeadCat

Common Agricultural Policy Reform: Statements

Sub Category

IndxSubTopic


Topic

IndxQHeadTopic


See Also

SeeAlso


Part1

TitlePart1


Part2

TitlePart2


Part3

TitlePart3


Volume

VolumeNo

796

Book No

BookNo

3

Pdf Ref

PdfPageRef

720

Default Business Index

IndexViewCategoryDefault

Common Agricultural Policy Reform: Statements

3 Part Title Business Index

IndexViewCategoryTitle


Default Topic Index

IndexViewCategoryDefaultSpeaker

Common Agricultural Policy Reform: Statements

3 Part Topic Index

IndexViewCategoryTitleSpeaker


Motion Code

MotionCode


Motion Title

MotionTitle


Stage

MotionStage


Amendment No

MotionAmendmentNo


Bill Code

BillCode


Bill Title

BillTitle


Stage

BillStage


Section

BillSection


Statement Code

StatementCode


Statement Title

StatementTitle


Stage

StatementStage


Hour Indicator

HourIndicator

Not applicable

Procedural Instruction

Procedural_Instruction

No

Debate Adjourned

DebateAdjourned

No

Question Askee

QAskee


Question Asker

QAsker


Question Department

QDept


Question ID

QID


Question Reference

QRef


Question Speaker PID

QSpeakerPID


Question Speaker PID To

QSpeakerPIDTo


Questions Asked

QUESTIONSASKED


Speaker Type

SpeakerType

2

Speaker Name

Senator


Deputy


Minister

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney)

Witness


Chairman


ViceChairman


ActingChairmanD


ActingChairmanS


Speaker4Display

Speaker4Display

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney)

Speaker

Speaker


SpeakerPID

SpeakerPID

SimonCoveney

SpeakerText

SpeakerText

Simon Coveney

OriginalUnidSnippet

OriginalUnidSnippet

7C0C42D4A7FECB2880257B2E00542602

LastModifiedSnippet

LastModifiedSnippet

02/18/2020 11:10:28 AM

TopicIndex1stCategoryValues

TopicIndex1stCategoryValues

Snippet Contents:

My apologies for being a couple of minutes late. I am pleased to have the opportunity to address the House today on the Common Agricultural Policy reform proposals. Our debate is timely given that we are approaching a crucial juncture in the negotiations. The EU Council of Ministers will meet on Monday and Tuesday of next week with a view to adopting a comprehensive Council position on the proposed reforms.
The proposed reform of the CAP arises in the context of the revision of the EU multi-annual financial framework, MFF, for the EU budget for the coming years. This is a seven-year budget. The reform must be decided by full co-decision between the Ministers of the 27 member states in the Council and the European Parliament. The challenge for the current round of CAP reform is to deliver in good time a Common Agricultural Policy that is fit for purpose and coherent with the Europe 2020 strategy for recovery and growth, and that supports the twin goals of competitiveness and sustainability. Ireland seeks a policy that promotes sustainable intensification of production, environmental stewardship and a vibrant rural economy and that is consistent with our Food Harvest 2020 strategy.
As the current holder of the Presidency of the Council of the European Union, Ireland is at the centre of the negotiations. Good progress was made by previous Presidencies on technical issues, with the result that there were some 30 issues outstanding when Ireland took over the Presidency last January. In parallel, the European Parliament has made substantial progress on the dossier. The agriculture and rural development committee of the EU Parliament voted on its amendments in January and the Parliament's position was confirmed yesterday in plenary session.
My aim is to finalise the Council position and negotiating mandate by the end of March, leading to inter-institutional trilogues with the aim of overall political agreement by the end of June. A significant step forward in this process was achieved on 8 February 2013 when the European Council reached agreement on the EU budget for the next seven years. Subject to the consent of the European Parliament, the agreement provides the necessary clarity on agricultural funding that will allow completion of the negotiations on CAP reform. I hope this occurs under our Presidency.
The agreement was generally positive from a CAP perspective. The CAP will continue to account for almost 39% of the overall budget in year one. It incurred a cut of 3% compared to the Commission's original proposals, whereas the total EU budget was cut by 7%. This represented a good negotiating outcome in the face of significant pressure from several sources for a higher cut to CAP expenditure. Ireland has secured €1.5 billion per year for agriculture, or €11 billion over the seven-year period of the CAP.
Another crucial issue in the MFF agreement is the distribution of CAP funds between member states. The formula agreed by the Heads of State and Government for the distribution of direct payment funds, or Pillar 1 funds as farmers know them, between member states had originally been proposed by Ireland and resulted in a relatively favourable outcome for the country. The result is that the level of direct payments made to Irish farmers has been largely protected by maintenance of our direct payments ceiling at over €1.2 billion per year, with a relatively small reduction to accommodate new member states and because of the overall cut in the budget.
Now that the EU budget has been decided, although it has still to be confirmed by the European Parliament, the main issue for many member states, including Ireland, is the distribution of direct payments among farmers and the attendant rules and regulations. The Commission has proposed moving to a flat-rate payment system. In the case of several member states, including Ireland, this would result in a significant transfer of funds among farmers. I believe there is a need for redistribution but I am seriously concerned that moving to a flat rate, as proposed, would be harmful for the Irish agricultural sector as a whole and certainly for the Food Harvest 2020 strategy. Some member states, especially the newer member states, are seeking alternative solutions, while others, including Germany, are satisfied with the flat-rate proposal.
The February Agriculture and Fisheries Council meeting broadly endorsed a package of measures which I tabled, aimed at achieving a compromise on this rather difficult issue. The package included an option to take a more flexible approach to distribution, the so-called approximation model favoured by Ireland. This would result in a less radical level of redistribution between individual farmers, moving gradually towards, but certainly not all the way to, a flat-rate payment for everyone. It also included a redistributive payment as an additional option for member states. This is essentially a top-up payment for the first number of hectares.
The reality is that Ireland is facing two sets of demands on this issue. On the one hand, there are farmers on low payments per hectare who are arguing for a larger share of the available funding on the grounds of equity and fairness, and on the other hand there are farmers on high payments per hectare who have invested single farm payment funds in improving the productive capacity of their farms and have no wish to move back from this position. They have earned these entitlements over time. Both sets of demands are understandable and reasonable, but they are difficult to reconcile. We need a solution that is fair to everyone and that will represent a real move away from historical payments - such payments seriously disadvantage some farmers - but that avoids unreasonably large cuts to those on higher payments. This is why I have put forward the approximation model, which would give member states such as Ireland the flexibility to do that.
Under the Commission proposal, we have estimated, using our 2010 database, that €280 million would be transferred between farmers. Under the Irish proposal, a minimum of €74 million would be transferred, with flexibility to transfer more if we wished to do so. The key will be reaching a fair compromise which levels the playing field without putting productive farmers out of business. As is the case with any negotiation, the final position will be somewhere between my approach and that of the Commission. I am fighting to ensure that the best possible outcome for all farmers is reached in a balanced and fair way.