30 March 1998
Lords attack EU proposals

FARMERS should be paid directly to provide “environmental goods” that the public wants, says a report by a House of Lords committee.

The protection of wildlife habitats, maintenance of water courses and provision of footpaths are just some examples of unpaid environmental work farmers carry out, the report says.

The committee has been looking at Agenda 2000, the European Union (EU) package of proposals for reform of its agricultural and rural policies.

It says the proposals are a “disappointment” as it would fail to push European agriculture from its “subsidised inefficiency” to being a “keen competitor” on world markets.

The report echoes the views of a report put out by the House of Commons agriculture select committee as well as the Governments stance that the proposals do not go far enough.

  • Financial Times 30/03/98 page 6 (News Digest)