“Support to farmers must be fair so that there is no inequality between them”, said Minister Kiril Vatev during a debate on the future of agriculture in the EU at a meeting of the Council of the EU. Facing a number of increasing challenges, the EU needs a stable system to guarantee security of supply and affordability of food for citizens, as well as stability in farmers' incomes. We have all witnessed how many member states currently have farmers' protests, and this fact raises extremely serious questions about the current Common Agricultural Policy, and poses very serious tasks for the future of Europe's agricultural policy”, stated Minister Vatev.
He highlighted the importance of ensuring security in business, durability in legislative requirements, simplicity, systematicity and logic of requirements. A balance must also be found between the EU's growing environmental and climate ambitions and ensuring economic sustainability along the agricultural food chain.
Minister Vatev also pointed out that new technologies and innovations can increase productivity and competitiveness and reduce energy dependence and greenhouse gas emissions at the same time. Significant efforts are also needed to be put in order to reduce the vulnerability of the European agri-food system and its dependence on external supplies of basic raw materials, fertilizers, plant protection preparations, feed and natural gas, he added.
Minister Vatev commented that the main goal of the strategic dialogue on the topics set should be to achieve a balance between the economic well-being of farmers, the protection of the environment and public justice. Within the Council, Bulgaria expressed support for a document by Poland on the need to include effective solutions to prevent excessive imports of agricultural products in the in the new Regulation on Autonomous Trade Measures for Ukraine.
Minister Vatev expressed the position that he upcoming proposal for a regulation should include provisions for accelerated procedures under protective clauses and the possibility of applying regional protective measures in the event of shocks in the markets of several or one member state.