Challenges of European Integration – to What Extent Should the Common Agricultural Policy Stay Common?

Barbara Wieliczko

Abstract


The common agricultural policy (CAP) is considered to be the oldest EU policy and one that covers such a vast range of issues that it leaves almost no room for Member States’ policy in this field. Yet the recent consecutive reforms which base their rationale on the common truth that “one-size-does-not-fit all” give more and more room for Member States to make their own choices. Thus, both a theoretical and an empirical question can be posed: what is the optimal solution for the EU and its citizens (acting both as consumers and taxpayers) when it comes to shaping agricultural policy? Should it be an EU policy or should it be left to Member States or even to their regions?
This paper presents an answer to the question posed in the title. The answer is based on the theory of fiscal federalism and environmental federalism as well as practical issues relating to the functioning of EU agriculture based on a literature review.
The results show that there is room for activity by both the EU and the Member States when it comes to agricultural policy. The optimal division of tasks between the EU and Member States, based on the subsidiarity principle, shows that EU policy should focus on safeguarding the competitiveness of EU agriculture and fair competition on the EU common market, while Member States should concentrate on fine-tuning EU policy instruments to the specific needs of their agriculture.


Keywords


common agricultural policy, EU agriculture, fiscal federalism, environmental federalism, subsidiarity principle

Full Text:

PDF

References


Boadway, R. and Tremblay, J. F. (2012) “Reassessment of the Tiebout Model”. Journal of Public Economics 96(11–12), https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpubeco.2011.01. 002.

Consolidated Version of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, Official Journal of the European Union C 115/47.

Costello, Ch. and Kaffine, D. (2018) “Natural Resource Federalism: Preferences Versus Connectivity for Patchy Resources”. Environmental Resource Economics 71(1), https://doi.org/10.1007/s10640-017-0138-3.

Daugbjerg, C. (2017) “Explaining Reform and Reversal of the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy, 1992–2013”. Journal of Common Market Studies 55(3).

Engel, K. H. and Rogers, J. E. (2015) “Environmental Federalism: A View from the United States”. Arizona Legal Studies Discussion Paper 15–28.

European Commission (2018a) Agri-food Trade Statistical Factsheet European Union – Extra EU 28.

European Commission (2018b) Proposal for a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing rules on support for strategic plans to be drawn up by Member States under the Common agricultural policy (CAP Strategic Plans) and financed by the European Agricultural Guarantee Fund (EAGF) and by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) and repealing Regulation (EU) No 1305/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council and Regulation (EU) No 1307/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council, COM(2018) 392 final.

European Commission (2019) The Common Agricultural Policy: Separating fact from fiction. Brussels.

Oates, W. E. (1999) “An Essay on Fiscal Federalism”. Journal of Economic Literature XXXVZZ: 1120–1149.

Regulation (EU) No 1305/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 December 2013 on support for rural development by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) and repealing Council Regulation (EC) No 1698/2005, Official Journal of the European Union L 347/487.

Vogel, D., Toffel, M., Post, D. and Uludere Aragon, N. Z. (2010) “Environmental Federalism in the European Union and the United States”. Harvard Business School Working Paper 10-085.

Wieliczko, B. (2012) “Common Agricultural Policy – the Most Common EU Policy the Least Homogenous” in L. Lacina, P. Rozmahel, A. Rusek (eds) Eurozone and Its Neighbors: The Third Year of Crisis. Bučovice: Martin Stříž Publishing.

Wieliczko, B. (2017) “The Impact of Global Surrounding on the Common Agricultural Policy” in Nauki ekonomiczne w XXI wieku – wyzwania, dylematy, perspektywy. Międzynarodowe stosunki gospodarcze. Prace Naukowe Uniwersytetu Ekonomicznego we Wrocławiu nr 498, pp. 374–381, https://doi.org/10.15611/pn.2017.498.34.

Wieliczko, B. (2018) “State Aid in the EU Agriculture” in R. Veselica, G. Dukic, K. Hammes (eds) Economic and Social Development. 36th International Scientific Conference on Economic and Social Development “Building Resilient Society” Book of Proceedings, Development and Entrepreneurship Agency, Varazdin, Croatia; University North; Koprivnica, Croatia; Faculty of Management University of Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland; Faculty of Law, Economics and Social Sciences Sale, Mohammed V University in Rabat, Morocco, http://ec.europa.eu/competition/state_aid/scoreboard/index_en.html.




DOI: https://doi.org/10.15678/AOC.2019.2105