CEA withdraws from all Commissions related to the ordinances of the Rural Development Programme


Zagreb, 10.02.2016. Members of the CEA Association of food industry and agriculture are dissatisfied with the new proposals of the Rules on the implementation of measures M04 "Investments in physical assets", sub-measure 4.1. "Support for investment in agricultural holdings" and the Regulations on the implementation of measures M04 "Investments in physical assets", sub-measure 4.2. "Support for investments in the processing, marketing and / or development of agricultural products", and believe that they are a serious problem for development of the domestic sector of the food industry and agriculture, given the existing structure of producers and their capabilities and needs.
Special objections to the new Regulations are discriminatory provisions that are unfairly treating affiliates, which nurture a special tradition and history in these two sectors and which are employing large numbers of people and significant link in the supply chain. Commenting on the sudden change of criteria, Goran Pajnić, CEA president of the Association of Food Industry and Agriculture said: "The European Commission to any regulation does not require states member states applying those criteria, that would cause a disadvantage for a large number of manufacturers. Such sudden changes of criteria indicate the biggest problem of Croatian agriculture and food industry - the lack of vision and strategy for the sector. Because of the lack of continuity in criteria, domestic producers can hardly make business decisions regarding new investments, which are necessary for the existence of domestic production. "

Furthermore, changes in the Regulations relating to the maximum value of the aid according to the project, wherein the proposed reduction of the total amount of support with a 5 to 1 million, is not acceptable because it takes into account the specificity of each sector and the need for a higher amount of support for larger investments. We remind that the State CEA participated in the collection of data on planned investments when working draft of the Rural Development Minister and when the analysis of the planned investment was a necessary data about the amounts of support, which is approving the RDP and the European Commission acknowledged as a relevant fact.
CEA is committed to maintaining the existing maximum level of support per project. There is no doubt that a number of investments in smaller manufacturers can run and the grant amount of EUR 1 million, but a synergy is between the large and small producers for the overall success of the Croatian agriculture and food industry. Neglecting the need of large companies is to limit the possibilities of overall development in these two sectors.

Suggested Rules in this form represent a major negative impact on domestic production and agricultural companies that employ more workers, but also to small producers who are not competitive enough. The criteria should be aligned with the needs and structure of domestic production. Also, any such sudden change in the criteria put domestic producers in a precarious position in which they are exposed to great legal uncertainty and where they are not able to plan long-term investment potential and adequately develop their strategy, which indirectly affects the development of the sector.

Illegal and discriminatory proposals of the Rules, which, again, have no foundation either in the Directive or in national legislation, nor the practice of a single EU member state, HUP are completely unacceptable and in no way will not give them legitimacy. Because of this CEA informs the general public that pulls out all the committees in which such social partners so far participated in this topic. The responsibility for these harmful solutions will have to take only the Ministry of Agriculture
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