Trilateral talks on the EU farm policy reform held on Friday in the Parliament brought negotiators closer to an agreement, but more flexibility from the Council is needed for a quick deal.

After the so-called super trilogue on all three regulations on the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) reform, held with the Portuguese Agriculture Minister Maria do Céu Antunes, representing the Council, Commission’s Executive Vice-President Frans Timmermans and Commissioner Janusz Wojciechowski, and the Parliament’s negotiating team, the Agriculture Committee Chair and the Parliament’s head negotiator Norbert Lins (EPP, DE) said:                                                                                                                  “Today’s super trilogue was a much needed push in the CAP reform negotiations. The discussions were constructive and significant progress was made for instance on the New Delivery Model and results indicators. With regard to young, new and active farmer, we achieved a better understanding of each other’s positions and we are now one step closer to an agreement. Furthermore, we found a provisional solution on vine planting rights and on wine labelling.”                                                                                                  “Each party showed a commitment to reaching a compromise, which clearly paid off. However, we will need further debates, for instance on capping of direct payments and redistributive payments, as the Council was not flexible enough yet to allow us to make substantial progress in these areas.”                                                                                   “I especially want to thank the three rapporteurs Peter Jahr, Ulrike Müller and Eric Andrieu and their teams who defended the Parliament’s priorities. Together we stood a united front for an ambitious reform.”                                                                                        “After today’s good atmosphere, I’m optimistic that we can finalise the CAP reform negotiations still with Maria do Céu Antunes as our negotiating partner in the AGRIFISH Council. But the Council will have to show us more flexibility in coming weeks to allow us to proceed quickly.”

The next CAP reform trilogues are provisionally scheduled for 16 April Strategic Plan regulation), for 21 April (Common Market Organisation regulation), and for 23 April (Financing, management and monitoring regulation).

The trilateral negotiations between the Parliament, the Council and the Commission on the final shape of the EU farm policy reform were launched on 10 November. Since then, roughly seventeen trilogues, including today’s super trilogue, and several dozen technical and preparatory meetings have taken place.