On 2 February 2017, a meeting of Secretary of State, Jacek Bogucki, and Vice Minister of Agriculture of Lithuania, Rolandas Taraškevičius, was held in the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. The talks focused on the prospects of Polish-Lithuanian cooperation within the EU and the most important problems of the agricultural sector in both countries.
Photo. Polish-Lithuanian talks
With regard to the future of the Common Agricultural Policy after 2020, Poland and Lithuania presented a consensus about the need to maintain the Community nature of the CAP, expressing strong opposition to the re-nationalisation of this policy, especially in financial terms. Both countries emphasised the justness of maintaining the existing two pillars of the CAP, with a strong second pillar which will allow reducing the differences in development of agriculture and rural areas in the enlarged EU. The need to equalise the level of direct payments in order to ensure equal treatment of farmers and equal conditions of competition in the single EU market was stressed. At the same time, bearing in mind the necessity to strengthen the position of producers in the food chain, the ministers pointed out the need for effective regulations of unfair commercial practices at the EU level.
Subsequently, they discussed the current situation on the main markets of agricultural products: milk, meat, cereals and sugar, noting the importance of effective safety net and possible consequences for the agricultural sector arising from the free trade agreements with countries or blocks of countries which are serious global producers and exporters of agricultural products, negotiated by the European Commission on behalf of the Member States. The negative impact of diseases: avian influenza in poultry and ASF in pigs, on the income situation of producers was highlighted.
The epidemiological situation in Poland and Lithuania in relation to African swine fever virus, including actions taken to combat the virus and compensate farmers in areas covered by the restrictions for their losses, was discussed in detail.
The second part of the meeting was devoted to the subject of promoting export of agri-food products and their systemic and institutional conditions in both countries. This part of talks was attended by the President of the Agricultural Market Agency, Łukasz Hołubowski, who presented the activities and the role of the AMA in relation to the promotion of agri-food products.
Both sides declared their readiness to strengthen cooperation even more in the bilateral formula, as well as multilateral and regional formula, especially with other Baltic states.