The European Committee of the Regions hails the Austrian Presidency's determination to make the vitality of rural areas one of its core priorities  

Guillaume Cros, the Committee's rapporteur on CAP reform is to meet the Austrian Minister for Agriculture at the Informal Council of agriculture ministers (23-25 September)

Under the European Commission's proposals for the EU's next long-term budget, the CAP's second pillar (rural development) is the main victim of budget cuts.

In the run-up to the informal meeting of agriculture ministers from 23 to 25 September in Austria, Karl-Heinz Lambertz (BE/PES), President of the European Committee of the Regions (CoR), pointed out that "in order to meet the territorial cohesion objective set out in the Lisbon Treaty, the CAP is an important instrument for keeping up sustainable agriculture throughout the EU and preserving vibrant rural communities. For rural development, implementation must however tie in with a robust cohesion policy acting on both urban and rural areas, in particular by embedding the "rural development" pillar in the general regulation for cohesion policy".

The CoR rapporteur on the reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) Guillaume Cros (FR/PES), Vice-President of the Occitania region, will meet the Austrian Minister for Agriculture, Elisabeth Köstinger alongside the Informal Council. He will convey to her the message that "the key role played by Europe's regions in managing and implementing the CAP must be retained and strengthened, especially for the second pillar, so as to bring policy options in line with specific territorial and sectoral characteristics".

In the rapporteur's view the legislative proposal on the future CAP, in its current form, actually has the effect of marginalising, or even jeopardising, the role and autonomy of Europe's regions in managing the CAP, simply allotting them the task of implementing measures laid down at national level.

On 9 November 2018 the European Committee of the Regions will hold a high-level event together with Peter Kaiser, President of the Carinthia region, on European Union territorial cohesion post-2020: the territorial dimension of cohesion policy and urban-rural challenges.

 

Further information

the informal meeting of agriculture ministers will take place on 23-25 September in Schloss Hof in Lower Austria. Alongside the main meeting of ministers, which will discuss current substantial matters regarding CAP reform, the programme also includes a debate on "The PAC post-2020: shaping the future of vital rural areas and quality food production in the European Union". The aim is not only to discuss the importance of CAP instruments, with a focus on family farms, but also the promotion of sustainable production of high-quality food while at the same time boosting the competitiveness of European farmers.

Contact:

Wioletta  Wojewodzka

Tel. +32 2 282 22 89

wioletta.wojewodzka@cor.europa.eu