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EU Economy: Issues and Policies - Essay Example

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EU Economy: Issues and Policies

The food shortage of post-war Europe is not the reality today. Today CAP encourages farmers of EU to produce all types of fruits, vegetables, cereals and dairy products. The aim, now, is to produce enough food of good quality for the people of EU. Rather than focusing on only farming, the CAP of today’s EU focuses on a “diversified economic development in rural areas” and making sure rural people gets a fair standard of living (Agriculture 8Feb 2013). The focus is also on environment and welfare of animal. After 2012 the CAP has three priorities: (one) “viable food production”, (two) “sustainable management of natural resources”, “three balanced development of rural areas throughout the EU” (Agriculture and Rural Development, 6 Nov 2012). Should there be farther reform in the CAP policies (Agriculture 8Feb 2013)? The charts below shows how CAP evolved from 1971 to 2011 and shares of different budgetary allocations made in billion Euros: 1971 1984 1992 2005 2011 Source: (European Commission 2012) The CAP at Present: According to European Commission’s website on “CAP and agriculture in Europe- Frequently asked questions” the CAP budget is spent in the following three ways (Agriculture and Rural Development, 6 Nov 2012). 1. Farmers get a direct payment as an Income Support. To get this payment, they must meet the stringent norms of food safety. They should take care of environment and wellbeing of farm animals. 70% of the Common Agriculture Policy Budget is spent on this direct payment. 2. Rural development: this ensures that the farmers improve their farms and become more competitive. The environmental issues must be kept in mind while improving the farms. These payments are partly made by the European commission and the rest by the member countries. 20% of the CAP budget is spent on this area. 3. There is a provision of market support in case of destabilization in market during bad weather. Less than 10% of the total CAP budget is spent on this area (Agriculture and Rural Development, 6 Nov 2012). Some Facts about CAP: Currently 20 percent of the farmers get 80 percent of the CAP amount. This is because 80% of the farm-area is held by 20% of the farmers. For the countries joined EU prior to 2004, the amount received by a farmer is determined by the factors like the area they cultivate, and the model of aid taken up by their countries. The farmers of the countries that joined EU after 2004 get gets the payment on per-hectare basis. Currently there is no upper limit to the amount of aid received by a farmer (EU Facts 22Jan 2013). Number of cases of fraud is found to be low. According to the European Anti-Fraud Office, only an average 0.02% of the total budget allocation of CAP is misspent on fraudulent cases (European Anti-Fraud Office (17Jan 2013). According to a report posted on the Institute for the Study of Civil Society website civitas .org.uk the CAP budget was 31% of the total EU budget. CAP costs Britain as much as 10 billion pound per year, considering overall effects of CAP. About 75% of the farmers earn just five thousand pounds per year in the EU. And, their average income is about half of average income in other sectors (EU Facts 22Jan 2013). Challenges to CAP: In a communication from the European Commission to the Parliament, the Council and others titled “The CAP towards 2020: Meeting towards the food, natural resources and territorial ...Show more

Summary

This policy paper is for the attention of the Agriculture Minister of Britain, and is designed to explore whether: The CAP should be reformed, and if so why and how. Introduction: Since its introduction in 1962, the Common Agriculture Policy (CAP) of Europe has undergone many changes…
Author : blakin
EU Economy: Issues and Policies essay example
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