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L'AGRICULTURE ET LE MARCHE COMMUN

Giancarlo Olmi
Il Politico
Vol. 35, No. 3 (SETTEMBRE 1970), pp. 496-510
Published by: Rubbettino Editore
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/43210169
Page Count: 15
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L'AGRICULTURE ET LE MARCHE COMMUN
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Abstract

According to the treaty founding the European Economic Community, the completion of the Common Market for agricultural products had to be carried out while setting up a common agricultural policy. The Community has given priority to a market policy, aiming by means of short run provisions such as drawings from imports, export subsidies, interventions in the home market, to stabilize prices to a suitable level that could assure a certain remuneration to the farmers. Since identical mea-sures have to be applied to the whole Community, market policy decisions must be taken by the center, the Community authorities. Each year these authorities fix the prices, establish daily or weekly drawings or refunds on the exchanges with third countries and strictly define the forms of the interventions in the home market. Moreover, the Community, through FEOGA, takes on full financial responsibility of such a policy. In order to obtain that the member States come to an agreement for the creation of the marekt organizations, the Council was obliged to fix prices which are comparatively too high for certain products. The consequence was an overproduction in some branches and therefore, the formation of surpluses especially of wheat, butter and sugar. The FEOGA must thus appropriate huge sums in order to get rid of them. The standard of living of farmers, on the other hand, has not improved. Instead of an action on the market in order to support prices, it would be better to act on the structures in order to reduce costs. With its memorandum on agricultural reform presented on December 12th, 1968 the Commission draw the blueprint for a bald program of structural reform aiming to a reduction of labour, an elimination of marginal soils and above all to the creation of modern enterprises apt to increase not only the profit but also the standard of living of farmers. Unlike market policy, structural reform can be formulated according to the needs of the various regions. While a series of rules must be defined at Community level, a remarkable discretionary margin in their fulfilment must be left to the member States. Consequently, the financial cost will also be divided between the Community and the member States.

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