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    Mr. Botănoiu (MARD) – Under no circumstances can we accept the capping of direct payments, because this would severely affect large farms

Mr. Botănoiu (MARD) – Under no circumstances can we accept the capping of direct payments, because this would severely affect large farms

20-03-2019

The Secretary of State in the Ministry of Agriculture, Mr. Daniel Dumitru Botănoiu, pointed out on Tuesday, at the debate dedicated to the Common Agricultural Policy and the Cohesion Policy, that the capping of direct payments cannot be accepted under any circumstances, because this would severely affect large farms that comply with environmental standards, and they would lose competitiveness compared to imports from third countries.

“Continuing the external convergence of direct payments is a positive aspect, which we stand behind. Romania calls for an annual ceiling of expenditure funded by EAGF of at least the amount set in 2019, i.e. approximately €1.9 billion. We salute the implementation of degressivity and support the endeavours to simplify the CAP. We have also noticed the maintenance of support for young farmers and an expansion of the programmatic effort to develop smart villages. We also agree with preserving the two pillars of the CAP, and agricultural risk management tools, as well as with the necessity to drive research and innovation in food, agriculture, rural development and the bioeconomics of agricultural research and innovation, said the MARD official.

Mr. Daniel Botănoiu outlined that larger farms are those that ensure food safety, enforce high standards and have an essential contribution to the country’s economy.

Another aspect that Romania does not agree with refers to national co-funding of direct payments, which would determine unfair competition between Member States, but, above all, would widen the gap between the East and the West even further, due to the existence of excess capital (including a budgetary one) in developed States, and a capital shortage, in less advanced States, shows a press release of the MARD sent to AGERPRES.

During the debate, the Secretary of State Mr. Botănoiu also spoke about generation renewal, pointing out that “attracting and keeping young people in rural areas, facilitating the transfer of farms, access to land, funding, training and innovation, must constitute concrete support proposals in order to attract young people to rural areas and must include measures in the agricultural sector (support for setting up of young farmers), fiscal measures (facilitating loans), social measures (developing nonā€‘agricultural activities in rural areas to increase attractiveness), educational and patrimonial measures (facilitating the transfer of farms, encouraging the retirement of the elderly in order to attract young farmers).”

The meeting dedicated to the Common Agricultural Policy and the Cohesion Policy, hosted by the Romanian Parliament, will continue on Wednesday, 20 March 2019, with a discussion on the encouraging of small farmers in the new context of the budget, the digital revolution and food chains.

AGERPRES