Informal Meeting of Agriculture Ministers/Meeting of the Special Committee on Agriculture: extracts from the joint press conference by Mariann Fischer Boel, Iztok Jarc and Michel Barnier
The European Union's Ministers for Agriculture met at the Brdo pri Kranju Congress Centre on 27 May 2008. The Slovenian Presidency's main focus of attention in the field of agriculture is the project of the 'review' of the reform of the common agricultural policy (CAP). In the first stage of the debate, the Ministers agreed on policy guidelines on individual aspects of the review of the CAP reform, laying down a framework for the Commission for the future development of agricultural policy in the period 2009-2013. At the informal ministerial meeting of the EU Ministers for Agriculture, the Commission presented its legislative proposals to the Member States. On this occasion, the Ministers opened the second stage of the debate on the basis of the legislative proposals with the aim of adopting them by the end of 2008. The informal meeting also provided an opportunity to look at the CAP in the wider context and to concentrate on existing and emerging challenges. The Slovenian Presidency has, accordingly, drawn up a Presidency paper as a basis for the debate. In this document, the Presidency highlights climate change, biofuels, environmental protection, risk management in agriculture, and food safety.
In tandem with the informal meeting of the Ministers for Agriculture, Slovenia also hosted a formal meeting of the Special Committee on Agriculture (SCA). The Special Committee on Agriculture is a professional and political body which prepares proposals for decisions to be discussed by the EU Council of Agriculture Ministers. The meeting focused on the presentation of environmental impact assessment accompanying legislative proposals in the context of the review of the CAP reform. In accordance with EU efforts for better regulation, every legislative instrument must be accompanied by an impact assessment to evaluate the impact of the proposed solutions on the issue or area concerned. SHOTLIST