October 15, 2015
'Enjoy, it's from Europe': €111 million allotted to promote EU agriculture in 2016
The European Commission has allotted €111 million (US$127.5 million) for programmes to help EU farmers, including those in the distressed pork and dairy sectors, find new markets and promote consumption outside and inside the 28-nation bloc.
The EC adopted on Tuesday, October 13, the new "Enjoy, It's from Europe" promotional policy that seeks to help the agricultural sector's professionals break into or consolidate international markets and make European consumers more aware of the efforts made by European farmers.
The budget for 2016 is part of a multi-year promotional campaign adopted in 2013, which started with a €61-million budget that year. The budget increases progressively up to €200 million in 2019.
Moreover, the EC will increase the co-financing rate and cut the red tape for the approval of projects.
The EU co-financing rates will go up from 50% to 70-80% (up to 85% for Greece and Cyprus). At the same time, national co-financing disappears, thereby creating a level playing field across member states. Red tape will be significantly cut during the selection process of projects, making it easier to apply.
Selected 3rd countries
The 2016 programme targets a selected list of third countries (countries outside the EU) where there is the highest potential for growth, particularly for the sectors experiencing a difficult market situation, like dairy and pig meat. These countries include the US, Canada, South Korea, Japan, China, Taiwan and the 10 member-countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, or Asean.
Of the total amount, €30 million were specifically earmarked in the support package unveiled by Commissioner for Agriculture & Rural Development Phil Hogan in early September to support promotional measures in these two sectors.
Hogan stated on Tuesday: "Europe's agri-food produce is second to none in the global marketplace. The €110 billion EU export market creates jobs and growth in rural areas across Europe. To continue this export drive, I am delighted to unveil this new promotion regime, which will see €111 million leverage further opportunities for EU agri-food produce in new markets, as well as grow our presence in existing markets.
"I am particularly pleased to announce the ring-fencing of €30 million for the troubled milk and pigmeat sectors as part of the recently announced €500 million agri-markets package. I look forward to mounting a diplomatic offensive in the coming months, leading trade missions to open further opportunities for EU producers across the globe".-Rick Alberto