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To what extent was the Agenda 2000 policy a missed opportunity to reform the CAP radically? Free essay! Download now

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To what extent was the Agenda 2000 policy a missed opportunity to reform the CAP radically?

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Downloads to date: N/A | Words: 2100 | Submitted: 08-Feb-2005
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Essay written 2004, compares several methods of radically reforming the CAP, including nationalisation, the use of bonds as proposed by Tangermann. Also provides descriptive analysis of the Agenda 2000 reforms and breif background to the MacSharry reforms.


These pressures continued throughout the 1990’s and further reform of the CAP was essential in order to meet GATT constraints for cereals and beef, additional pressures for continuous reform came from the WTO especially stemming from the US and the Cairns group who pushed for more free market policies. Internal pressure was also substantial, the cost of the CAP increased after the MacSharry reforms, but more importantly the CAP had to be reformed in order to allow for the enlargement of the relatively backward economies of the CEEC’s. With this level of pressure on policy makers, Agenda 2000 presented an ideal opportunity for radical reform.

The original proposals for reform from Commissioner Fischler (1997) were severely watered down by the end of Agenda 2000, this was perhaps to be expected as the same occurred with all other CAP reforms from Manscholt to MacSharry. The original Commission proposals targeted the key commodities of Arable Crops, Beef and Dairy produce, in all of theses commodities large cuts in the intervention price were proposed, 20%, 30% and 15% respectively. The final reductions agreed by the Berlin Agreement in 1999, were less extensive a 15% cut for crops and a 20% cut for beef. The original proposals also tried to remove the production distorting set aside policy, however, this remained at 10%. The quota system for dairy products was also extended by two years from the original proposals. The outcomes of Agenda 2000 have failed to prepare the CAP for the accession of 10 new member states and there is still continuing pressure from the WTO to liberalise the EU’s agricultural policies. The increased use of direct payments which are considered a ‘blue box’ policy by the WTO meant the inevitable need for future reform, the ‘blue box’ is an area of policies that will be reviewed by the WTO and there is a possibility they will be outlawed.

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