By Els Brems, Sustainable Use of Natural Resources Directorate

Drip irrigation of Green Cos. Source: aon168/GettyImages

By Liia Laanes and Charlotta Törneling, ‘Sustainable Use of Natural Resources’ Directorate

In June 2018, the Commission published its proposals for the post-2020 Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) — aimed at a greener and more results-based CAP. What did the ECA say about these and how did we go about it? In this article, Charlotta Törneling, head of task for opinion 7/2018 on the post-2020 CAP proposals, and Liia Laanes, head of task for opinion 1/2020 on the transitional regulation, reflect on the process and give their take on working on a review paper and opinions related to the post-2020 CAP…

By Harriet Bradley and Ariel Brunner, BirdLife Europe and Central Asia

Intensive agriculture, still funded by the CAP, is the main reason behind the massive wildlife declines in the EU. Source: Johny Goerend

By Diana Lenzi, European Council of Young Farmers (CEJA)

Picking apples in an orchard in Slovenia. Source: CEJA.

Interview with Luis Capoulas Santos, Chair of the European Affairs Committee of the Parliament of Portugal

Luís Capoulas Santos, Chair of the Committee on European Affairs, during the passing of testimony from the Portuguese Presidency of the Council of the European Union to the Slovenian Presidency, in its Parliamentary Dimension. Photo by Margarida Macedo Basto, 2021 © Arquivo Fotográfico da Assembleia da República, PT-AHF/GAR/R5229/i2.

The new Common Agricultural Policy will entail many changes for Member States, starting with the drafting of the National Strategic Plans they have to submit to the European Commission, not to mention implementing thosea plans. Consequently, national parliaments may be more involved, possibly amending the national plans and monitoring their implementation. Luis Capoulas Santos is currently a Member of Parliament in Portugal and Chair of its European Affairs Committee. For many years he has been working on agricultural policies, during his time as Secretary…

Interview with Norbert Lins, MEP and Chair of the EP Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development

MEP Norbert Lins at work in the European Parliament. Source: EP

On 25 June 2021, there was finally a green light for a post-2020 Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) to become more performance oriented, greener and fairer. The agreement was preceded by numerous discussion rounds between the European Parliament, the Council and the European Commission, based on the Commission’s proposals initially launched in 2018. From the European Parliament’s side a key representative throughout the negotiations was Norbert Lins, Member of the European Parliament (MEP) and Chair of the EP Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development (AGRI)…

By Erika Rupnik and Maša Železnik, Court of Audit of the Republic of Slovenia

Vineyards, trees and houses on hills at sunrise with fog, Jeruzalem, Slovenske Gorice, Prlekija, Styria, Slovenia. Source: SimonSkafar/Getty Images

While the EU’s overall agricultural policy is set at EU level, Member States are responsible for the implementation of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), based on what is known as the ‘shared management’ mode. The latter also includes a number of activities by Member States’ authorities to monitor CAP programmes. Consequently, a Member State’s external audit institution can assess the effectiveness of its government’s monitoring of such a CAP programme. The Court of Audit of the Republic of Slovenia (CARS) has done this. …

Interview with Samo Jereb, ECA Member and chair of the ECA audit chamber Sustainable Use of Natural Resources

Samo Jereb in his garden in Slovenia.

With expenditure amounting to €59.5 billion, the EU’s budget for ‘natural resources’ represents 37.4 % of the total EU budget, and the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) accounts for 98 % of this. It may come as no surprise that the ECA’s audit work on this budget chapter makes up a substantial part of the ECA’s overall publications, both regarding compliance and performance issues. As for the latter, the ECA has published 20 special reports relating to the CAP since 2017. ECA Member…

Interview with Julia Klöckner, German Minister of Food and Agriculture

Julia Klöckner. Source: Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture of Germany

With the delivery model envisaged in the new Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), Member States will have a large say in how they want to achieve the objectives laid out in the CAP agreement. All the more important to hear their views on what they think of the post- 2020 CAP and how it addresses their particular concerns. Julia Klöckner is Germany’s Federal Minister of Food and Agriculture and was directly involved in the negotiations, leading them during Germany’s Council Presidency in 2020. Below she provides some insights into what the agreement means for farmers in Germany.

By Gaston Moonen

A CAP agreement that is well-balanced


Interview with Janusz Wojciechowski, Commissioner for Agriculture

Janusz Wojciechowski.

European Court of Auditors

Articles from the European Court of Auditors, #EU's external auditor & independent guardian of the EU's finances.

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