Danish Presidency Priorities for the Agriculture Sector

An Expert's View about Agriculture and Animal Husbandry in Denmark

Posted on: 25 Jan 2012

In the first half of 2012, Denmark will hold the Presidency of the Council of the European Union. This report provides a summary of the Danish Presidency's priorities for the agriculture and fisheries

THIS REPORT CONTAINS ASSESSMENTS OF COMMODITY AND TRADE ISSUES MADE BY USDA STAFF AND NOT NECESSARILY STATEMENTS OF OFFICIAL U.S. GOVERNMENT POLICY Voluntary Public - Date: 1/12/2012 GAIN Report Number: E70003 EU-27 Post: Brussels USEU Danish Presidency Priorities for the Agriculture Sector Report Categories: Agriculture in the News Approved By: Cynthia Guven Prepared By: Hilde Brans Report Highlights: In the first half of 2012, Denmark will hold the Presidency of the Council of the European Union. This report provides a summary of the Danish Presidency's priorities for the agriculture and fisheries sectors. DANISH PRESIDENCY – WORK PROGRAM AGRICULTURE & FISHERIES CAP REFORM First priority is negotiating the CAP reform in the context of a new Multiannual Financial Framework (2014-2020). A greener CAP: Denmark supports farm subsidies which are targeted towards innovation, research and development, and will seek to ensure that in the future it is possible to target farm subsidies towards e.g. the development of biogas plants and similar actions of benefit to the environment. Moreover, it should be possible to use the entire CAP for targeted interventions towards environmentally friendly agricultural production for the benefit of e.g. climate and the environment. More competitive CAP: It is a Danish aim that agricultural policy should help to improve the competitiveness of agriculture - locally and globally - through innovation and the development of technology and with minimal distortion of competition. Simplification of the CAP: The Danish Presidency will work towards a simplification of the CAP in order to alleviate administrative burdens for industry without compromising food quality or safety. ANIMAL WELFARE Under the Danish Presidency, the Council will consider the Commission’s Communication on a new animal welfare strategy (the European Commission and the Danish Presidency are organizing an “International conference on the EU animal welfare strategy 2012-2015” in Brussels Feb 29 – Mar 1, 2012), as well as the Commission’s report on the regulation on the protection of animals during transport (published in November 2011). FOOD SAFETY Under the Danish Presidency, the Council will continue its discussion on the Commission’s proposals to revise the rules on dietetic foods (proposed in 2011) and on novel foods (expected by the end of 2012). The “Quality Package” proposal (proposals regarding the regulation of quality systems and commercial standards for agricultural products) will be adopted under the Danish Presidency. The Danish Presidency will invite Member States to scrutinize the Commission’s report on the current regulation on organic farming and labeling and discuss whether new legislative proposals are needed. The Danish Presidency will also focus on developing modernized meat inspection and associated legislation. COMMON FISHERIES POLICY REFORM A new reform was proposed in 2011. Under the Danish Presidency, the Council will continue its work on the CFP reform. LISBON TREATY The Danish Presidency will also focus on adapting a number of regulations to the Lisbon Treaty (decide on delegated or implementing acts to replace “old” comitology). TRADE WTO AGREEMENT Achieving progress in the WTO talks of the Doha Development Round is a top priority of trade policy for the Danish. In parallel with the Doha Round, Denmark will continue to prioritize bilateral trade agreements (incl. Canada, Columbia-Peru, India, Japan, Mercosur, Malaysia and Singapore. ENVIRONMENT REVISION OF ENVIRONMENTAL RELEASE OF GMO’S DIRECTIVE In July 2010, the Commission presented a proposal for the amendment of the GMO – deliberate release - directive, which has been negotiated during the three previous presidencies without agreement having been reached in the Council. The objective of the proposal is to amend the deliberate release directive and give Member States the possibility to prohibit, limit or prevent the cultivation of genetically modified organisms (GM plants) in the whole or parts of their territory. The proposal does not affect GMOs that are only approved for import to the EU or other restrictions on free trade in seeds in Europe. In July 2011 the Parliament adopted 28 amendments to the Commission’s proposal. The Danish Presidency will seek to obtain political agreement concerning the proposal in the Environment Council. SUSTAINABLE CRITERIA FOR BIOFUELS The Danish Presidency will prioritize initiatives regarding sustainability criteria for biofuels, more specifically the Council will need to handle potential proposals for legislation addressing the indirect land use change impact of biofuels. ROAD MAPS The Presidency will follow up on the EU’s long-term energy and climate road maps (action plans). LINK(S) The Danish Presidency’s Work Program can be downloaded from their website at http://eu2012.dk/en/EU-and-the-Presidency/About-the-Presidency/Program-og-prioriteter.
Posted: 25 January 2012

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