Reports & Analyzes

Measures and impacts related to the Covid-19 crisis

There is an arm wrestling match between the European Commission and the Agriculture Committee of the European Parliament on delegated acts for exceptional market measures for the wine sector. MEPs objected to one of the acts in order to obtain more ambitious support, notably for the wine and fruit and vegetable sectors. The Commission announced that it would propose a new act “before the summer” and before Parliament takes a final position of rejection (or not) at its July plenary session.

Presentation of exceptional measures to support the agri-food sector by Commissioner Janusz Wojciechowski

The Commissioner was present on the 30th of April to explain to ComAgri members the exceptional measures announced by the European Commission on 22 April and for which nine delegated acts are currently being prepared.
After hearing the remarks of the Members of Parliament, the Commissioner acknowledged the inadequacy of the proposed package without putting forward any substantial amendments. The only positive element in the Commissioner’s remarks was his position in favour of an independent and consistent crisis reserve, taking up the guidelines that Farm Europe has been proposing in this area since 2018.
Following this meeting, President of Comagri, Coordinators and MEP Anne Sander have joinlty decided on the 4th of May to urge the Commission to come with additional measures and financing otherwise a ‘smooth’ adoption of the proposed delegated act dealing with crisis mezsures for the wine sector could be compromised.

Transitional provisions for EAFRD and EAGF support in the year 2021 and until the CAP reform is in place

Comagri MEPs yesterday voted on the position they intend the European Parliament to take in negotiations with the Council (and the Commission) on the CAP transitional provisions until the future CAP reform, which they foresee for 1 January 2023 at the earliest, is in place. This position should officially become that of the European Parliament at the next mini-plenary in May.

Covid-19 : Exchange of views with Commissioner Janusz Wojciechowski

Transitional provisions relating to the support of the EAFRD and the EAGF during the year 2021 and until the implementation of the CAP reform

After mentioning the main agricultural sectors hit by the crisis, the Commissioner recalled the actions already taken by the Commission in reaction to the crisis. With regard to market interventions, the Commissioner mentioned that, at the end of the programming period, the funds available were very limited. He finally – without anything new – transferred responsibility for the action to the member states, through state aid and unrestricted funds for rural development.

The coordinators of the parliamentary groups reacted to the intervention of the Commissioner and stated:

  • That the current measures are useful but insufficient;
  • Finding funds is essential to support sectors during and after the crisis;
  • It is necessary to use intervention measures on the markets and to use the emergency measures of the CMO regulation (art.219-222), including the crisis reserve;
  • The necessary legal changes must be made so that MS can use the funds of the 2nd pillar for farms and processing companies;
  • The F2F and Biodiversity strategies (except for the Greens) must be postponed until after the crisis;
  • The importance of food security will need to be reflected in the future MFF.

Concerning the transitional CAP regulation, the package of amendments for crisis management and agricultural risks was not mentioned by the rapporteur Elsi Katainen, but the shadow rapporteur for the EPP underlined this point and indicated that this is an essential point for the group. She had registered before the start of the session the support of the S&D group. He had registered the support of the S&D group before the start of the session.

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Dispute between Uruguay and the United States at the World Trade Organization about the wine sector

El Observator, a Uruguayan daily newspaper headlined on 21 February 2019: “Uruguay le declaró la guerra al vino importado con agua agregada” (In English “Uruguay has declared war on imported wine with added water”).
On 14 March 2019, Uruguay submitted a notification to the World Trade Organization and its members, followed by a revision of this notification on 25 March 2019. This notification concerns all wine products entering the Republic of Uruguay.