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Gildernew focuses on CAP reform at Brussels meetings

30 November, 2010

Agriculture Minister Michelle Gildernew MP, MLA has held several meetings and briefings on the margins of the Agriculture Council in Brussels.

Following meetings with her devolved administration counterparts, the Minister said: “Yesterdays meetings in Brussels provided an ideal opportunity to meet up with my colleagues from Wales and Scotland to discuss matters of common interest.

“Following the formal presentation of the Commission’s Communication on the future direction of the CAP to the Agriculture Council this morning, I took the opportunity to brief Elin Jones and Richard Lockhead on my preliminary views on CAP reform. We had a very useful discussion on the issues raised and we will return to this important topic in the weeks and months ahead."

She added: “I also brought the Welsh and Scottish Ministers up to date regarding our challenge in the European Court of Justice on the SFP disallowance issue. There is concern well beyond the north of Ireland about the Commission’s approach to disallowance and having the support of others for our case is important.”

Later in the day, the Minister met with local MEP Bairbre de Brún to brief her on a wide variety of issues. Speaking afterwards, the Minister said: “I aim to meet up with our three MEPs on a regular basis. Such meetings offer an important forum to both the MEPs and me to update each other on progress in key policy areas with an EU dimension and to exchange information and views.

“I believe that this is essential if we are to maximise our influence in Brussels. Today’s meeting was very constructive and hopefully proved just as informative and helpful to Bairbre.”

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