Stable CAP 2021 budget ‘crucial’ for young EU farmers

A stable budget for the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) in 2021 – and beyond – is essential for European farmers, according to European young farmers’ representative group CEJA.

Following the publication by the European Commission of transitional provisions for the calendar year 2021 of the CAP, CEJA urges co-legislators to ensure predictability and stability at farm level.

To this end, the group said it is crucial that transitional rules, as well as the new CAP, are guaranteed a stable budget.

With the delays accumulated in the CAP and Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) legislative procedures, the publication of the commission’s proposals are welcome, according to CEJA.

Setting up transitional rules will allow the deliverance of certainty and predictability that are crucial at the farm level, it says.

CEJA president Jannes Maes commented on this, stating: “Long-term policy patterns are key to our stability as entrepreneurs and as young farmers more specifically.

“We therefore call on EU legislators to speed up the process so that the transition towards the next CAP is appropriately provided and the continuity of public support is guaranteed,” he said.

To this end, one of the most crucial elements will be to maintain financial allocations at their current levels, so that beneficiaries are not negatively impacted by the “existing rules, new budget” principle.

The transitional budget proposed by the commission is far from satisfactory and will have severe consequences for young farmers, CEJA says.

Among other elements of great importance, the rural development pillar is “set to be significantly reduced” with predicted negative impacts on flagship schemes such as installation and investment support.

European young farmers therefore ask member states to deliver on their budgetary commitments and step up their ambition in regard to the MFF 2021-2027 by guaranteeing a maintained budget for the CAP, not only for the transition but also for the required strategic plans.