The minister of agriculture Marija Vucković has said the CAP has not responded appropriately to differences in agricultural production between EU member states, and that these differences have not diminished in the last 15 years.
Speaking on a radio show by Croatian national radio HR1 on Tuesday (25 February), Vucković said that ”productivity poses an even bigger problem than the amount of allocation.”
“I think we and other countries need to stand up internationally and fight for the measures and flexibility that enables us to solve our problems while respecting CAP policy”, Vucković added.
Vucković highlighted that she agrees with the farmers who believe that payment policy per acre, which is part of the CAP reform and has been implemented for more than 10 years, ‘has “benefited developing countries and old members, but not newer ones like Croatia, who have structural problems in agriculture”.
She said the ”structural transformation is happening, mostly through the Rural Development Program, but is still not happening fast enough”.
She says that the biggest problem involves a lack of innovations and new technologies in the agricultural sector, as well as a weak relationship between manufacturers and farmers which she says is needed ”to strengthen them and bring production closer to the market.”
Furthermore, she announced more investment in the fruit and vegetable processing and for pig production in Croatia, as well as sorely needed changes in the Agricultural Land Act.