28/01/13 16:53 CET
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Irish Agricultural Minister Simon Coveney has urged the EU to move ahead on EU farming reform.
Coveney, whose brief also includes fisheries policy, said Ireland would use its presidency of the Union to get an agreement by the end of June.
He described the issues as “really big dossiers that affect most of the population of the European Union,” adding that the EU’s Common Agricultural policy makes up nearly 40% of the bloc’s budget.
Ireland gets 1.7 billion euros a year as part of the CAP. Dublin is opposed to cuts called for by the UK, the Netherlands and Denmark.
Those countries argue the CAP should be reformed for the 21st Century.
Miguel Arias Canete, Spain’s Minister for Agriculture said “negotiations were going well at the European Council, as well as with MEPs.”
He said he expected to strike a deal within the next six months under the Irish EU presidency.
Spain and France are also opposed to slashing farming spending.
The European Commission’s proposal tabled ahead of the previous budget talks last November put that figure at 44 billion euros over the next seven years.
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