An EU Court of Auditors report just published on the Common Agricultural Policy reform proposals strongly criticises many aspects of proposals and has been described by Ireland East MEP Mairead McGuinness as “an important contribution to the debate”.

The MEP has asked that a Court representative would come before the agriculture committee of the European Parliament, on which she sits, to address the content of the report.

Speaking in Strasbourg this morning (Tuesday) McGuinness said of the 63- page report:

“This critical assessment of the Commission’s reform proposals, expected for some time, deserves careful analysis and comes at a very critical time in the reform agenda.

“The court is critical of a number of aspects of the reforms. Paragraph 8 states that the policy will remain focused on compliance and not performance, even after the reforms kick in.

“And it criticizes the proposed greening component of the CAP for lack of clarity on what might be achieved by this proposal.”

McGuinness said the court is also concerned that payments under the CAP may still go to inactive farmers, despite efforts by the Commission to address this issue. ( para 88. 98. )

And it is also concerned about the administrative costs of the new payment system – para 10.

“The report is lengthy and considered and I have asked that a representative from the court of auditors come before the agriculture committee of the Parliament to address the content of the report and to assist MEPs in improving the reform proposals put forward by the Commission,” she said.

The court of auditors also highlight that the CAP reform proposals do not resolve the contradiction in the design of the payments system and is still not targeted towards needs or current standards of living.( Para 114)

“This document will need careful consideration and its recommendations will assist in reshaping the reforms”, she added.

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