NSPs of each EU country for new agriculture: from 400 to 4000 pages

Lavender field In France

The national strategic plans of the EU countries for the new European agricultural policy differ so much that LNV officials in Brussels are not yet able to make a comparative overview. There are countries that have summarized their NSP on ten or fifteen pages of paper, but there are also countries that do that in 400 or 4000 pages. 

In the meantime, 18 countries have definitively submitted their NSP to the European Commission, and for 4 countries it is a matter of 'a few more days'. Five countries are really late: a new agricultural course has been adopted after recent elections (including Germany, Slovakia, the Czech Republic). In Belgium, the NSPs of four regions have to be merged.

On Wednesday afternoon, the top officials of the AGRI commission gave an initial overview of the plans submitted to the European Parliament's agriculture committee, and how Brussels is now dealing with them. It is expected that a 'total overview' can be drawn up by the end of this year.

The fear of some MEPs that the 'latecomers' will mess up the whole process has been contradicted. The new CAP includes provisions that it will come into effect on January 1, 2023 anyway, and if countries don't get their act together, it could cost them EU money from the first pillar (farmers income). Those latecomers are also expected to be on schedule within two or three months.

Confronted with '400 to 4000 pages', some MEPs wondered aloud whether the European Commission had given the LNV ministries clear guidelines.

It was noted that the 'regionalization' introduced in particular in a few large EU countries leads to a lot of different rules and regulations. This concerns not only the say of regional governments, but also the input of regional and national agricultural organisations. 

Commission president Norbert Lins said that both the European Commission, the LNV ministers and the European Parliament should ensure that the subsidy regulations for each country are ready on time, so that farmers can adjust their sowing and production plans for the new season in good time.