Permanent Representation to the E.U.
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Thursday, 04 May 2017
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Page 11 of 15
The agricultural sector is of vital importance for the European economy as it provides the main source of revenue for the 20% of population of the E.U. which lives in agrarian areas. The economic integration of the agricultural sector was accomplished with the introduction of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), which supports the modernization of European agriculture and contributes to the sustainable and long term global food security. The CAP also supports the sustainable use of natural resources and the socioeconomic development of the agrarian regions.
The new Common Agricultural Policy for the period 2014-2020 makes available the sum of 408.31 billion Euro for agriculture, of which 312.73 billion Euro will be for Pillar I of CAP (direct payments to farmers) and 95.58 billion Euro for Pillar II (agricultural development programs). Greece will receive for the period 2014-2020 the sum of 15.59 billion Euros for direct payments to farmers and 4.2 billion Euro for the agricultural development programs.
The aims of the new Common Agricultural Policy are fairer, greener and better targeted direct payments, improvement of the farmers’ competitive position in the supply chain, improvement of the environmental impact of agriculture and increase of the transparency of the CAP.
After ascertaining that the implementation of the new CAP has resulted in complex administrative procedures in some sectors, the European Commission has initiated the process of simplifying the CAP, which has been implemented since 1/1/2014, aiming at reducing the administrative burden of the farmers and the national authorities, especially in the sectors of direct payments and the agricultural development programs. Greece’s view on the CAP simplification is that it could contribute to the country’s production restructuring, as long as it retains both its common and agricultural character without putting at stake the sound and secure management of the budget of the European Union. It is imperative to secure the stability of the CAP, so as both farmers and member states’ administrations can plan their mid-term actions.
For further info: ec.europa.eu/agriculture/cap-post-2013/