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Common Agricultural Policy

Volume 707: debated on Wednesday 4 February 2009

Question

Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government further to the Written Answer by Lord Hunt of Kings Heath on 12 January (WA 89–90), whether they will give notice to the European Union that if amendments to the Common Agricultural Policy in line with United Kingdom policy are not agreed by 2011 this will be against the United Kingdom's vital agricultural interests; and whether they would seek to repatriate agricultural policy. [HL851]

The Government published A Vision for the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) in 2005 setting out a blueprint for the future, envisaging the abolition of pillar 1 of the CAP by 2015-20. The vision also said that remaining expenditure would be based on pillar 2, and that rural development measures, including those targeted on protection and enhancement of the rural environment, would have a central rather than a peripheral role under a future CAP.

The UK believes there is a growing recognition that the CAP in its current form does not help equip the EU for the 21st century, and we will work with the European Commission and other member states to build support for genuinely fundamental, strategic and ambitious reform. There are a number of opportunities for doing so over the coming years, not least the current review of the EU budget.