Agriculture and Fisheries Council (AGRI-FISH):
Extracts from the press conference by the Cypriot Presidency and the European Commission
Lieu: Brussels, Belgium - Council
End production: 28/11/2012 First transmission: 28/11/2012
As regards agriculture, ministers had a public debate on direct payments, single CMO and rural development within the framework of the common agricultural policy (CAP) reform. Some specific issues has been discussed: equivalence to greening practices, sugar quotas and vine planting rights. The Council should then have adopted a regulation concerning the use of lactic acid to reduce microbiological surface contamination on bovine carcasses. Concerning fisheries issues, the ministers tried to find a political agreement on fishing opportunities for certain deep-sea stocks for 2013 and 2014. They also had an exchange of views on the annual consultations between the EU and Norway. Finally the ministers has been briefed on the EU-Morocco agreement on agriculture, the error rate in rural development, the EU food model, the Norway pout stocks and the EU-Mauritania fisheries agreement.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Arrival of the speakers
||SOUNDBITE by Sofoclis Aletraris, Cypriot Minister for Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment (In Greek) saying that: On direct payments, in the context of the debate about greening, the Council confirmed the urgent need for flexibility so that different environmental and agronomic circumstances in the member states can be taken into account. It was also pointed out that the administrative burden should not be increased and that competitiveness and productivity of European farmers should not be jeopardized.
||SOUNDBITE by Sofoclis Aletraris (In Greek) saying that: A large number of member states expressed strong concerns about the planned expiry of the sugar quota regime in 2015 and those delegations wish to see the quota regime extended until 2020. But an equally large number of member states requested strict compliance with decisions taken by the Council to the effect that the sugar quota regime would be faced out in 2015.
||SOUNDBITE by Sofoclis Aletraris (In Greek) saying that: I would like to say at this point that the negotiations on the reform of the CAP have reached a critical stage so we all need to understand that swift action is needed. We need to move forward quickly if the new framework is going to be in place before the next program and period begins.
||SOUNDBITE by Dacian Cioloş, Member of the EC in charge of Agriculture and Rural Development (In French) saying that: (on sugar quotas) I felt that the split in the view to member states calling for quotas to be maintained, others who wanted them to be maintained and increased seems a little odd to me when we're spending public money to close down sugar refineries and producers and now people are saying it should be increased to allow them to continue to produce so I think it would be better to eliminate it in that case and other supported our proposal to face out the quotas.
||Cutaway (2 shots)