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Anderson welcomes CAP reform but criticises lack of democracy

20 November, 2013 - by Martina Anderson MEP

Commenting at the conclusion of the CAP Reform negotiations Sinn Féin MEP Martina Anderson said:

"It has been a long and difficult negotiation and credit is due to those who brought this to a conclusion.

"The reformed CAP is a compromise between 28 member states, therefore we did not achieve everything that I would have liked for our agriculture sector. Although I supported the compromise I do not believe there is sufficient flexibility in the legislation to reflect our preferred outcome.

"I am of course pleased with a less bureaucratic CAP, but feel that the dossier could have gone further in areas such as food security and action on big buyer abuses. The effectiveness and appropriateness of the greening measures are also debatable, while the funding cut to CAP which I have consistently opposed will be acutely felt by the farming comunity in the North of Ireland. Rural communities and food security are not areas I believe should be subject to political power plays.

"However this is the deal we have, but I will continue to flight to ensure security for rural communities through every avenue available.

"The new CAP places a burden of responsibility on the member states, and I will pay close attention to how the British Government - who was responsible for negotiating cuts to CAP - will compensate for the effect that the drastically reduced development package will have on rural communities.

"I am concerned that the CAP vote, and all other votes taken this week in the European Parliament relating to the new Multi-annual Financial Framework, were not subject to amendments from members or political groups which I believe is a dilution of democracy.

"Whilst I understand the need to bring many of these reports to a swift conclusion doing so at the expense of the democratic process is completely unacceptable. I certainly hope this is not a sign of things to come. Disregarding the will of the members - and by extension the electorate - will only cause a further loss of confidence in the EU institutions."

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