Dáil Éireann - Volume 561 - 13 February, 2003
Written Answers. - Agenda 2000.
Mr. Durkan Mr. Durkan
103. Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Agriculture and Food his views on the Fischler proposals; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [4210/03]
Mr. Walsh Mr. Walsh
 Minister for Agriculture and Food (Mr. Walsh): The Commission's detailed proposals for the mid-term review of Agenda 2000 were published on 22 January and presented by Commissioner Fischler to the Council of Agriculture and Fisheries Ministers on 27 January. At that meeting, ministers gave their preliminary responses to the proposals.
The details of the proposals are now being examined in various committees in Brussels and discussions will continue at official level and in the Council of Ministers over the coming months. The Greek Presidency has indicated its intention to reach decisions on the proposals at the June meeting of the Agriculture and Fisheries Council.
I have outlined my concerns and made my overall opposition to these proposals clear at the January Council meeting. I told the Council that significant reform was not necessary at this time and would put pressure on the EU budget; the timing of such reform in the absence of further progress in the WTO round of negotiations was questionable; and the specific proposals were not in accordance with stated EU policy objectives in relation to the European model of agriculture and they would impact on Ireland disproportionately. My objective in the negotiations is to preserve the benefits to Irish agriculture and to rural communities achieved under the Agenda 2000 Agreement.
Dáil Éireann 561 Written Answers. Agenda 2000.