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
GAIN Report Number: E70003
Post: Brussels USEU
Danish Presidency Priorities for the Agriculture Sector
Agriculture in the News
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
First priority is negotiating the CAP reform in the context of a new Multiannual Financial
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.
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).
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
The Danish Presidency will also focus on developing modernized meat inspection and associated
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.
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).
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.
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
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.
The Presidency will follow up on the EU’s long-term energy and climate road maps (action plans).
The Danish Presidency’s Work Program can be downloaded from their website at