22 November 1996

CAP change certain

CAP change is inevitable and will lead to a common agricultural and rural policy for Europe (CARPE), predicts Alan Buckwell of Wye College, Kent.

Such a policy would cut support to international levels, reduce or remove supply controls, and eliminate export subsidies and cut tariffs, Prof Buckwell, a member of the agriculture directorate (DG VI) in Brussels, told the British Crop Protection conference in Brighton.

Incentives would be given for rural development beyond agriculture and payments made for environmental and landscape benefits.

Transitional payments would be phased in to help farmers cope with the loss of direct market support. Those would be for a specified period, probably eight to 10 years.

Prof Buckwell expected discussion papers on CARPE to emerge this winter with concrete proposals next spring. The first target would be the beef and milk sectors. &#42