ANNOUNCEMENT 14 Oct 2015
In October 2015, the French government issued the Agreement (Arrêté) establishing the eligibility criteria and requirements of the direct income payment scheme. The scheme aims to support farmers in France under the European Agricultural Guarantee Fund (EAGF) 2014-2020.
NUMBER OF INTERVENTIONS
Journal Officiel. Official Gazette. "Arrêté du 9 octobre 2015 relatif aux modalités d'application concernant le système intégré de gestion et de contrôle, l'admissibilité des surfaces au régime de paiement de base et l'agriculteur actif dans le cadre de la politique agricole commune à compter de la campagne 2015". 14/10/2015. Available at: https://www.legifrance.gouv.fr/jorf/id/JORFTEXT000031307754
EUR-Lex. Official Gazette. "Regulation (EU) No 1307/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 December 2013 establishing rules for direct payments to farmers under support schemes within the framework of the common agricultural policy and repealing Council Regulation (EC) No 637/2008 and Council Regulation (EC) No 73/2009". 20/12/2013. Available at: https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=CELEX%3A32013R1307&qid=1619526760849
On 14 October 2015, the French government published the Agreement (Arrêté) establishing the eligibility criteria and requirements of the direct income payment scheme. Under the scheme, eligible local farmers receive direct income payments under the European Agricultural Guarantee Fund (EAGF). The 2015-2020 budget for these French payments was set out in Regulation (EU) No 1307/2013 at EUR 37.5 billion (approx. USD 42.8 billion).
Income support measures to farmers take the form of financial grants. According to Regulation (EU) No 1307/2013, beneficiaries are active farmers that meet minimum requirements further specific by member states. In the case of France, the adopted Agreement establishes the national eligibility criteria and requirements to be met by applicants by referring to a set of provisions included the Rural and Maritime Fisheries Code. The eligibility criteria set under the Code relate to, among others, admissible surfaces, maintenance of the agricultural surface, eligible products for short rotation cultivation and for fallow lands.
The payments will be managed by the Service and Payment Agency (ASP in French), a paying agency and public operator that contributes to the implementation of EU, national and local policies. ASP, along with the Ministry of Agriculture, Agrifood and Forestry, is in charge of verifying the sustainable conditions of the applying farmers.
The measure will be applicable until 2020. Until 14 October 2015, France was granting income support under the rules and budget set by the CAP framework 2007-2013. In order to grant income support payments to French farmer using the budget from the 2015-2020 budget France needed to establish the national rules for the 2014-2020 CAP framework.
EU's CAP framework
The CAP framework is the EU-wide agricultural policy established in 1962 that is subject to reforms and new rules every six years. According to the EU, it aims to support farmers and improve agricultural productivity, ensuring a stable supply of affordable food. Under the CAP, Member States provide three main types of support to the agriculture sector: (i) income support measures, (ii) market measures; and (iii) rural development measures. The two first are primarily financed by the EAGF; whilst the third and last support type is financed by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD).