Agriculture and rural development

Agenda 2000

Agenda 2000

History of the CAP
Agenda 2000

Agenda 2000 explicitly established economic, social, and environmental goals within a new reformulated set of objectives for the CAP consistent with the requirements of the Amsterdam Treaty.

This had the aim of giving concrete form to a European Model of Agriculture and preserving the diversity of farming systems spread throughout Europe, including regions with specific problems, in the years ahead.

The Agenda 2000 objectives included:

  • more market orientation and increased competitiveness,
  • food safety and quality,
  • stabilization of agricultural incomes,
  • integration of environmental concerns into agricultural policy,
  • developing the vitality of rural areas,
  • simplification and
  • strengthened decentralization.

A new rural development policy was introduced as a second pillar of the CAP. This new policy encouraged many rural initiatives while also helped farmers to diversify, to improve their product marketing and to otherwise restructure their businesses.


Key documents:



For a general overview on the evolution of the CAP and Agenda 2000 reform proposals, read the document "The Common Agricultural Policy - Promoting Europe's agriculture and rural areas: Continuity and change" of 1998.

For a more detailed information on the Commission proposals of March 1998, read the document "Agenda 2000: The future for European agriculture" of 1998.

For aditional information on the measures adopted, read the document "CAP reform: A policy for the future" of 1999.

For the rural development policy, read the document "CAP reform: Rural development" of 2000.