Research for AGRI Committee – New competition rules for the agri-food chain in the CAP post 2020

14-09-2018

In connection with the next reform of the CAP post 2020, the Commission has proposed a new Regulation (COM(2018)394 of 1 June 2018) on the common market organisation, amending Regulation (EU) No 1308/2013 of 13 December 2013 (amended by Regulation (EU) No 2017/2393 of 13 December 2017). This draft regulation does not, however, cover questions on the relationship between the CAP and competition; the proposal does not contain any provisions concerning the responsibilities of professional and interbranch organisations and the possible conditions of their submission to competition rules. The recent Omnibus Regulation (EU) No 2017/2393 has made changes to the legal framework for the application of competition rules to the agreements and practices of farmers and their associations. However, this new legislative framework is not yet entirely consistent and, in the light of the Court of Justice judgment handed down on 14 November 2017 in the Endive case, the progress ought to be consolidated and clarified in order to guarantee the real effectiveness of these provisions and greater legal certainty for operators. This study analyses the development of the relationship between the CAP and the competition rules and highlights the need to take corrective action with respect to current farming legislation to ensure that the CAP has primacy over the competition rules and the implementation of the objectives set out in Article 39 of the Treaty.

In connection with the next reform of the CAP post 2020, the Commission has proposed a new Regulation (COM(2018)394 of 1 June 2018) on the common market organisation, amending Regulation (EU) No 1308/2013 of 13 December 2013 (amended by Regulation (EU) No 2017/2393 of 13 December 2017). This draft regulation does not, however, cover questions on the relationship between the CAP and competition; the proposal does not contain any provisions concerning the responsibilities of professional and interbranch organisations and the possible conditions of their submission to competition rules. The recent Omnibus Regulation (EU) No 2017/2393 has made changes to the legal framework for the application of competition rules to the agreements and practices of farmers and their associations. However, this new legislative framework is not yet entirely consistent and, in the light of the Court of Justice judgment handed down on 14 November 2017 in the Endive case, the progress ought to be consolidated and clarified in order to guarantee the real effectiveness of these provisions and greater legal certainty for operators. This study analyses the development of the relationship between the CAP and the competition rules and highlights the need to take corrective action with respect to current farming legislation to ensure that the CAP has primacy over the competition rules and the implementation of the objectives set out in Article 39 of the Treaty.