Abolishing CAP payments are not on Commissioner Hogan’s ‘radar’

The European Commissioner for Agriculture (CAP), Food and Rural Development, Phil Hogan has said that the ceasing of Common Agricultural Policy payments is not on his radar.

“I have no notion to abolish the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) payments to farmers,” he said.

CAP payments from the European Union are extremely important to Irish agriculture, as approximately 130,000 farmers and other entities receive payments in the region of €1.8 billion each year.

Commissioner Hogan also said there he would like to see the payments focus more on diversity, while he also mentioned what farmers he would like to see benefiting from these payments.

I would like to see small and medium sized farms getting better treatment, this would cover the vast majority of farms in Ireland.

Speaking at the 75th Virginia Show, Commissioner Hogan also said that CAP payments provide a basic income to farmers to provide public goods to the wider economy.

He also hinted that the market intervention protocols may change in the future, as CAP payments come more in line with market intervention.

“The interventions will become more and more available on the basis of the risk and the difficulty of an activity in the future,” he said.

Budget pressures on CAP payments

However, despite Commissioner Hogan’s commitment to CAP payments, he said there will be budgetary pressures from some Member States.

“But there will be pressures obviously on the budget and this happens every six or seven years when you have to have negotiations about laws of member states

“It is not the Commission that set the budget, it is the Member States. The European Prime Minsters of the 27 Member States will decide the outcome of those negotiations.

“We propose, they decide,” he said.