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Fischler, 'no agricultural reform, no more EU enlargement'

Fischler, 'no agricultural reform, no more EU enlargement'

Former EU commissioner for agriculture at the Udine University

UDINE, 08 aprile 2024, 19:49

Redazione ANSA



"In the coming years, the future EC, after the next elections, will necessarily have to make new reforms in the field of agriculture because without reforming this sector, it will be almost impossible to continue the process of enlargement of the European Union, especially towards the countries of the Western Balkans." That is what Franz Fischler, former European Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development - from 1995 to 2004 - and Austria's minister of agriculture - from 1989 to 1994 -, said today on the sidelines of his lecture at Friuli University on "Challenges and Opportunities for Friuli's Agribusiness Sector in the New Global Context." The event, which was opened by greetings from University Rector Roberto Pinton, Luciano Nonis, director of the Friuli Foundation, and Claudio Cressati, deputy director of the Department of Legal Sciences, was followed by a panel discussion with professors at the University of Udine, and representatives of civil society and business, including Corrado Pirzio Biroli, former chief of staff at the European Commission.
    "At the European level, we need to find new forms of cooperation within production chains," Fischler underlined, "because the problem is that the farmer is the weakest link in this chain. Therefore, we need to think about a better balance.
    And this," specified the former EU commissioner of agriculture, "has to do with the European rules of competition, and the ability to cooperate within precisely the production chains, and also with brands and quality products. In this country and also in this region, Friuli Venezia Giulia, you have very high-quality products that are known all over the world, so," Fischler concluded, "it will be necessary for the European Common Agricultural Policy to give support and not hinder these excellent productions.
    The former European commissioner delivered some food for thought on the sidelines, including that "in response to climate change, there are opportunities for the agricultural sector, which is the largest terrestrial Co2 sink after the Oceans". "Introducing new rules and incentives for farmers to 'capture' and store Co2 in soils," he added, "would help farmers and the climate change issue."


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