ANNOUNCEMENT 06 Mar 2015
In March 2015, the Croatian government established the eligibility criteria and requirements of the direct income payment scheme. The scheme aims to support farmers in Croatia under the European Agricultural Guarantee Fund (EAGF) 2014-2020 (see related state act).
NUMBER OF INTERVENTIONS
Official Gazette of the Croatian Republic, Law on Agriculture, NN 30/2015, 17 March 2015: https://narodne-novine.nn.hr/clanci/sluzbeni/2015_03_30_612.html
On 6 March 2015, the Croatian Parliament adopted the Law on Agriculture 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 Austrian payments has a total value of EUR 951 million (approx. USD 1080 million) established by Regulation (EU) No 1307/2013 of 2 December 2013, see related state act.
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 specified by the Member States. In the case of Croatia, Law on Agriculture establishes eligibility criteria and requirements to be met by national applicants. Beneficiaries must have a minimum of 1 hectare of agricultural land area to be eligible for the direct payments.
The Croatian Paying Agency for Agriculture, Fisheries and Rural Development (APPRRR in Croatian) is operating as the paying agency for the Common Agricultural Policy. APPRRR is in charge of the national application process and is responsible for verifying the compliance of beneficiaries and the payment transactions.
The measure entered into force on 18 March 2015 and shall be applicable during the 2015-2020 period. Previous to that, Austria was financing its income support payments primarily from the 2007-2013 budget of the EAGF, which was established under a different subset of rules.
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 first is primarily financed by the EAGF; whilst the third and last support type is financed by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD).