Wednesday, 13 November 2019

Questions (192)

Brendan Smith


192. Deputy Brendan Smith asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine if delays in finalising the EU budget will impact on the CAP budget; if so, the effects on schemes supported through CAP funding; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [46902/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

The European Commission recently presented two proposals to provide for transitional regulations to bridge the period between the current CAP programming period (2014-2020) and the CAP post-2020 (2021-2027). Transitional measures such as this are normal between programming periods where a gap arises due to the challenging nature of finalising the new EU Budget and CAP regulations, which require unanimous agreement.  

The proposals provide for a one-year transition period in 2021.  Funding arrangements for transition are based on the Commission’s proposals for the new EU Multiannual Financial Framework. My officials are currently examining the proposals, which will be discussed in Brussels in the coming months and are to be agreed with the European Parliament. 

It is important to note that the existing rules and financial arrangements for CAP, including the EU Budget allocations for the period 2014-2020, will apply for 2020, as set out in the relevant CAP regulations for both Pillar 1 and Pillar 2.

My key priority remains to continue to press for agreement on the CAP reform proposals and on the maintenance of the CAP budget as part of the EU Multiannual Financial Framework.

Since the launch of the proposals on the Multiannual Financial Framework, I have worked closely with other Agriculture Ministers to seek to maintain the level of CAP funding for the EU 27 and to reverse the cuts. From the start of this process, I joined with my colleagues in Madrid in May 2018 and together with France, Spain, Portugal, Greece and Finland signed a Memorandum to call for the maintenance of the CAP budget. 

Work on this initiative has continued and, most recently, at the October Agrifish Council, I again joined with my colleagues across Europe when 17 Member States joined a declaration seeking to maintain CAP funding in the period post-2020.  I will continue to work with my European counterparts to fight for a strong CAP budget, and to ensure the best possible outcome for Irish farmers from the CAP post-2020 negotiation process.