‘Weathering climate change may require an increase to the CAP budget’

MEPs in Europe have backed an amendment tabled by MEP Mairead McGuinness stating that an increase in the CAP budget may be required to address climate and weather-related problems.

The amendment comes after a vote was passed on Tuesday, October 9, by the EU Parliament that rejected cuts to the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) budget. The vote has been welcomed by the Midlands North-West MEP.

McGuinness, who is the First Vice-President of the European Parliament, said: “This is a strong signal from the Agriculture Committee that we reject cuts to the budget.”

The EU Agriculture Committee has urged that the budget is at least maintained at current levels for the post 2020 period.

The report calls for the CAP budget to be maintained in the 2021-2027 Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) at least at the level of the 2014-2020 budget.

It strongly opposes Commissioner Oettinger’s budget plans which would entail substantial cuts to the CAP.

Speaking in Brussells on Tuesday, McGuinness said: “I am very pleased with today’s vote which received broad support from members of the Agriculture Committee.”

She further underlined she was particularly happy that the committee acknowledged her concerns that weather-related problems experienced this year across the EU reinforce the need to look at an increase in the CAP.

She stressed that this week’s vote is very important for the upcoming discussions and negotiations on CAP reform.

The report will now be forwarded to the parliament’s lead committee, the Budget Committee, to incorporate into its report which sets out parliament’s position on the next Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF).

The MFF sets expenditure levels for EU policies such as CAP.