Brussels Daily
22 Feb 2019


Brussels Daily

New agricultural state aid rules: Commission increases national support to farmers up to €25,000

The ceiling for national support to farmers will rise from €15,000 to €25,000 allowing greater flexibility and efficiency, notably in times of crisis and situations demanding a swift response by the public authorities. Today the Commission has adopted revised rules on state aid in the agriculture sector (the so-called de minimis aid), increasing the maximum amount that national authorities can use to support farmers without the need for prior approval from the Commission. This decision will allow EU countries to increase support for farmers without distorting the market, while reducing the administrative burden for national authorities. Agriculture and rural development Commissioner Phil Hogan said: “The Commission’s proposal for new state aid rules for the agricultural sector reflects the value of this form of support in times of crisis. By increasing the maximum aid amount to farmers, national authorities will have more flexibility and be able to react more quickly and more effectively to support vulnerable farmers. In some cases, the amount of State aid that can be provided to individual farmers will be increased by 66%. These new rules will continue to accompany the normal rules for notified State aid, which Member States may continue to apply.” In EU state aid rules, EU countries shall notify state aid to the Commission and may not implement the aid measure until it has been authorised by the Commission. However, when the aid amounts are small enough, which is the case for the de minimis aid, EU countries do not need to notify or get authorisation from the Commission. Due to their size, the aid does not threaten competition and trade in the internal market. The de minimis aid is typically used by Member States when they need to act quickly without setting up a scheme in accordance with state aid rules, notably in times of crisis. It is also commonly used for very specific purpose, for example to help prevent or eradicate animal diseases as soon as an outbreak occurs, or to compensate farmers for damages caused by animals that are not protected under EU or national law such as wild boars. The damages caused by protected species of animals (wolves, lynx, bears, etc) can be compensated under notified state aid rules. A press release is online. (For more information: Daniel Rosario – Tel: +32 229 56 185; Clémence Robin – Tel.: +32 229 52509)

The European Commission presents at the Salon de l’Agriculture in Paris to celebrate the French agricultural sector

The International Agricultural Show opens tomorrow in Paris for a fortnight and the European Commission will be represented by several Commissioners who will make the trip and a booth that will welcome the many visitors to the show. This unmissable annual event is an opportunity to celebrate the work of the men and women who produce our quality food, renowned around the world. This year, three European Commissioners will come to visit: Phil Hogan, Commissioner for Agriculture, will be tomorrow 23 February, the official opening day, and will attend, alongside the chief negotiator of the European Commission Michel Barnier, the speech to be delivered by President Macron; Pierre Moscovici, Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Affairs, Taxation and the Customs Union, will be visiting on Monday 25 February and Vytenis Andriukaitis, Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, on 1 March. During his visit, Commissioner Hogan will meet the French Minister of Agriculture, Didier Guillaume, and receive the Order of Agricultural Merit. He will tour the show and will meet, along with Michel Barnier, many French agricultural representatives to discuss the Commission’s proposals for the future Common Agricultural Policy and our actions to protect farmers in the supply chain. food. The Commission’s teams will also be available throughout the fair to explain to visitors the European actions in place to support and promote a more sustainable and healthy diet. European policies on agriculture, the environment, food safety and animal and plant health will be presented in an interactive and fun way. France remains the first beneficiary country of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). More information on the PAC in France is available online. (For more information: Daniel Rosario – Tel: +32 229 56 185, Clémence Robin – Tel .: +32 229 52509)

Read the European Commission – Daily News in full here

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