Friday, March 21, 2008

Co-financing likely, says Parish

Co-financing of the CAP is likely to come in said Neil Parish, British Conservative chair of the European Parliament's Agriculture and Rural Development Committee in an interview with the excellent AgraFocus. This would reduce discrepancies between net contributors and net beneficiaries. However, he admitted that such a move could be difficult for the new member states, especially if they couldn't afford to introduce co-financing. It might therefore be necessary to have lower co-financing rates for them in the early years to make the change politically acceptable.

Parish noted the current turn towards food security commenting, 'The amazing thing is is that one year ago, most taxpayers would have been looking for a much more environmentally-based farm policy - not so much interested in the agriculture, but more in the landscape, which they still are. One year on, food security is back on the agenda. Taxpayers not only want a good environment, but if food supplies are tight, they will also be expecting the farmers to produce food.'

Other key points:
* It's proving difficult to get the CAP to work in the New Member States. Any further enlargement should be delayed until at least 2013 with the possible exception of Croatia.
* Taxpayers are 'questioning how we spend the money and why ... there has to be more transparency on how taxpayers are paid. In reality now with the SFP - in a lot of member states - you could go on to the websites and find out how much individual farmers are being paid.'
* He paid tribute to Mariann Fischer Boel as a very open Commissoner: 'I believe that a Danish Commissioner and a British Chairman is not a bad combination.'

Parish will be standing down after the next election as he is standing for the Westminster Parliament.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The best way to ensure food supplies for taxpayers is to scrap import tarrifs, scrap quotas and scrap the CAP