Minister Charlie McConalogue T.D. will today note the European Commission’s response to date to the impact that the Russian invasion of Ukraine is having on the agri-food sector.
The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine will also emphasise the importance of being ready to respond further during what will be an uncertain and volatile period ahead.
The Minister will also be calling on the Commission to urgently examine and approve measures which Member States require to help alleviate the situation for the fishing industry.
Speaking ahead of today’s Council of Agriculture & Fisheries Ministers in Brussels, which will be addressed by Ukrainian Agriculture Minister Roman Leshchenko, the Minister said: “In addition to the immediate humanitarian crisis, we will have to deal with the very wide-ranging implications that will be felt across the European, and wider global, economy.
“In terms of the impact on agricultural markets, we must continue to closely monitor the evolving situation, to ensure comprehensive and transparent sharing of the latest information.
“We must be ready to respond in a comprehensive and flexible manner, using all of the tools at our disposal. I look forward to a speedy conclusion of the Commission’s consultations on the proposed Temporary Crisis Framework for State Aid.”
The Minister continued: “I will also emphasise again the need to maintain functioning supply chains, and to ensure that our responses do not have any negative impact on the functioning of the Single Market.”
The Council will also receive a summary update from the Commission on Member States’ CAP Strategic Plans. In this regard the Minister commented: “I will urge the Commission to approve the plans in a timely manner, in order to give our farm families the clear signals they need in order to be ready to implement the new Common Agricultural Policy from 2023.”
On fisheries, the Minister McConalogue has initiated a Ministerial debate on the impact of increasing fuel costs for the fishing industry. These increased fuel costs have come on top of difficulties created from COVID-19 and the impact of quota reductions under the Brexit Trade & Co-operation Agreement, which significantly impacted the viability of the Irish fleet. Minister McConalogue said: “I am calling today on the Commission to urgently examine and approve measures which Member States require to help alleviate the situation for the fishing industry”.
Other items to be discussed at Council today include the enhancement of the potential of plant-based proteins in Europe, the use of bio-based fertilisers, the sustainable use of plant protection products and the impact of increased fuel costs in the fisheries sector.