Agriculture and Fisheries Council, 17-18/07/2017

Council of the EU

Main results

18 July 2017 - Agriculture

Trade-related agricultural issues 

The Council discussed the latest developments in trade and the EU efforts to opening up new world markets and to promoting EU agricultural products. Particular attention was given to recent achievements, such as the agreement in principle on a EU-Japan free trade deal, but the Commission and member states also focused on bilateral and multilateral free trade negotiations, their substance, state of play and possible outcome. These include on-going negotiations with Mercosur, Mexico, the Philippines and Indonesia, and future ones. 

Ministers had the opportunity to share their views on these free trade negotiations and agreements and their potential impact on European agriculture

Other topics on the agenda 

Ministers were informed about: 

  • discriminatory trade policy measures
  • the delegated act on wine grape varieties and their synonyms on labels, relating to the issue of the Slovenian 'Teran' wine
  • the issue of farmland trade in the EU
  • drought in Spain, Portugal and Belgium

17 July 2017

The Presidency presented its work programme and priorities in the areas of agriculture and fisheries, including simplification and the future of the CAP, as well as the monitoring of the market situation and ongoing trade negotiationsEmergency preparedness and antimicrobial resistance will also feature high in the next six-month agenda together with multi-annual management plans and technical measures in the field of fisheries. 

"We believe in an innovative and forward looking economy. That is why the use of risk management tools in the future CAP will be at the heart of the informal meeting of agriculture ministers in Tallin in September."

Tarmo Tamm, Estonian Minister for Rural Affairs and president of the Council


Fishing opportunities for 2018

The Council was briefed on a Commission communication on the state of play of the Common Fisheries Policy and on the consultation on the fishing opportunities for 2018.

Member states generally welcomed the communication and the progress achieved on a number of stocks. They stressed the importance of better communicating on these achievements and the need to acknowledge the specificities of the different regions and fisheries.

The Commission communication on fishing opportunities kick-starts the annual exercise of fixing total allowable catches (TACs) and national quotas for the following year. TACs for the Baltic Sea will be set in October; TACs and quotas for the Black Sea and all other Union fleet in December 2017.


Simplification and the future of the Common Agricultural Policy 

The Council held an exchange of views on the simplification of the Common Agricultural Policy, as well as on the results of the public consultation on the future of the CAP. 

Ministers encouraged the Commission to make simplification a priority in the future overhaul of agricultural rules and pleaded for an appropriate budget for the future CAP.  

"Making life simpler for our farmers is a work in progress. We need to periodically review our rules to strike a fair balance between strictness and feasibility. Simplification should be a guiding principle also for the future CAP".

Tarmo Tamm,Estonian Minister for Rural Affairs and president of the Council

Other topics on the agenda 

Ministers were informed about: 

  • the financing of the CAP in the reflection paper on the future of EU finances
  • the One Health action plan against antimicrobial resistance
  • the latest developments in the fight against African swine fever
  • the issue of labelling of origin and its possible impact on the internal market
  • the latest initiatives concerning the dual quality of foodstuffs
  • the outcome of the conferences on sustainable agriculture for youth in Africa, the future of food,GMO free agriculture, and of the meeting of the extended Visegrad group

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