Rural Development and Foods Minister Vangelis Apostolou held a meeting with Greek MEPs at the ministry on Friday, in order to brief them on the debate currently underway for Europe’s post-2020 Common Agricultural Policy (CAP).
The focus of the briefing was on avoiding a reduction of the CAP budget and the need for reforms that will result in a fairer and better targeted distribution of subsidies to farmers.
“At this time we are waging a battle within the European Commission to secure CAP funding for the next period and ensure that the subsidies, especially the direct ones, are not reduced by even one euro,” Apostolou said.
He said the meeting had covered the Commission’s proposals and the counter-proposals made by the Greek government, with MEPs agreeing on the need to protect CAP funding despite their ideological differences.
The minister also highlighted a “serious possibility” that CAP might be renationalised and said that Greece disagrees strongly with such a prospect. “At this time, it would mean that we would be unable, as a country, to compete with the tactics of the strongest in the EU,” he said.
Participants in the meeting included European Parliament Vice-President Dimitris Papadimoulis, SYRIZA MEP Konstantina Kuneva, main opposition New Democracy MEP Manolis Kefalogiannis, Communist Party of Greece (KKE) MEP Sotiris Zarianopoulos, independent MEP Notis Marias and an association of the MEP Nikos Androulakis.