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Czech Republic
Czech Republic would have 16% less funding from the CAP according to the latest EC proposal
Czech Minister of Agriculture considers that the criteria for determining the financial framework are unobjective and unclear.

A Czech farmer.

For rural development in the next European programming period, the Czech Republic should have around 16 percent less available than in the current programming period. This follows from the proposal submitted by the European Commission for the new rules and the financial framework of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). Minister Jiri Milek described the criteria for determining the financial framework of each country as not objective and unclear.

"In the rural development budget, we are most severely cut off from all Member States: compared to the current programming period of around 16 percent, there are no clear criteria for the Commission to determine the resulting resources for individual countries," said Agriculture Minister Jiří Milek.

The key points of yesterday's Council of Ministers in Luxembourg were the new CAP rules, including the rural development envelope and direct payments. In the new budget period, around 5% of the money will be spent on the whole CAP than in the current period, cutting off all countries. In rural development on average about 15 percent, the Czech Republic, however, mainly countries. For this reason, the Czech Republic joined the other countries and demanded that at least the current level of funding be maintained, as in the current period.

For the most problematic cases, the Czech Republic has long considered compulsory payment of direct payments. The new Commission proposes a progressive reduction of 25% for an amount of 60,000 up to 75,000 EUR direct payments, 50% of 75,000 up to 90,000 EUR, 75% of 90,000 up to 100,000 EUR and 100% over 100,000 EUR.

"In the Czech Republic, we have the largest average business size and also the fifth highest enterprise rate over 100 hectares. The proposed sprawl would affect businesses with significant livestock and plant production. About 1900 businesses, which manage more than two-thirds of the Czech landscape, employ half of all people in agriculture and hold three quarters of all cattle, including 89 percent of dairy cows. These are all reasons why we can not agree with the mandatory casting, "Milek said.

It is also important for the CAP to be simpler after 2020 and less administrative burden for farmers. This is not the case, for example, of a new condition for demonstrating the "real farmer", while a similar condition of an active farmer was changed to voluntary in the current programming period.

Each country should also be able to decide, on the basis of national specificities, which tools it will use to better respond to the structural needs of the sector. "Fundamental tools such as sprawl, degressivity or first-hectare payments should, in our view, remain voluntary," said Minister Milek.

Ministers also addressed the situation on commodity markets or the protection of bees and other pollinators. The Hungarian delegation presented a joint declaration by the Visegrad Agriculture Ministers of Agriculture and seven other countries to the BIOEAST initiative. This concerns the development of knowledge-based agriculture, aquaculture, forestry and bio-economy.

In the framework of bilateral talks, Minister Jiri Milek agreed with the German Minister of Food and Agriculture Julie Klöckner on the need for a real simplification of the CAP rules. They consider it important to effectively reduce the administrative burden for farmers. The topic of the meeting was also the current situation regarding African swine fever or mutual cooperation in the field of research.

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