The agriculture ministers of the sixteen German states have agreed on the introduction of a new European common agricultural policy. This has removed an important obstacle for LNV Minister Julia Klöckner (CDU) to reach an agreement with Environment Minister Svenja Schulze (SPD).
Klöckner still has a few reservations about the federal state compromise. but wants to 'tick it off' in the weekly cabinet meeting on Wednesday in Berlin. The compromise now reached concerns only the processing of the EU grants. There are still major differences of opinion about a new German animal welfare law, about the reorganization of agriculture and livestock farming, and how this should be paid for.
The question is whether all this can be dealt with before the summer recess and the election campaign.
The sixteen regional LNV ministers (from CDU, SPD, Greens and FDP) believe that of the EU agricultural subsidies, 25% should be earmarked for environmentally and climate-friendly production methods. With this, the federal states continue that Minister Klöckner and the EU countries want (20%), but less far than the requirement of the European Parliament (30%).
However, the trilogue at EU level has not yet been completed. In Brussels, observers expect the compromise of the EU ministers and the European Parliament to reach that 25%. The sixteen German states also accept that in agriculture the edges of fields (10%) must remain untreated.
Ministers also agreed on the level of the shift to the second pillar and a new distribution key for rural development funding (EAFRD). These amounts will increase from 10 to 15 percent in four years. According to calculations, from 2026, a total of 47 percent of Germany's CAP funds will be disbursed for Green Deal and F2F measures.
Minister Klöckner regretted that the state ministers had not decided on a major redistribution to small businesses. Klöckner admitted that a 10 percent shift in direct payments would not be easy for German farmers. Much will be asked of them.
The compromise of the sixteen federal states means that the German regions can no longer be against renewal of agricultural policy. They now expect Merkel, Klöckner and Schulze to take their views into account. The bills could be approved by the federal cabinet on March 31.