MEPs have today (Thursday, April 11), voted to process the proposed review of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) by “urgent procedure”.

The European Commission last month proposed a targeted review of certain CAP provisions to ease the administrative burden for EU farmers.

The review relates to the Good Agricultural and Environmental Conditions (GAEC) 8 on non-productive features, GAEC 7 on crop rotation, and GAEC 6 on soil cover during sensitive periods.

The request for “urgent procedure” for the file was passed by 432 votes to 155 and 13 abstentions in the European Parliament today.

CAP review

A vote on a number of technical amendments to the file, agreed with the council, will take place in the parliament’s agriculture committee on Monday, April 15.

The file in relation to the European Commission’s package of simplification measures to amend certain CAP aspects will then be voted on during a plenary session later this month.

Agriland understands that for the proposed changes to apply to the claim year 2024, it is crucial that the legislative procedure concludes before the end of the mandate.

The main changes proposed by the European Commission include:

  • Relaxation and simplification of some of the conditionality rules for CAP beneficiaries;
  • The possibility for a member state to amend its CAP strategic plan twice in a year (instead of only once);
  • An exemption for farmers under 10ha from conditionality controls and penalties.

The council has already agreed to the package, proposing only technical correction amendments. The aim is for the parliament to adopt only these amendments so the first reading can be closed this month, Agriland understands.

A request that a debate on a proposal submitted to the parliament be treated as urgent may be made by the president, a committee, a political group, members reaching at least the low threshold, the commission or the council.