Motion for a resolution - B8-0149/2018Motion for a resolution

MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on the US attack on EU farm support under the CAP (in the context of Spanish olives)

12.3.2018 - (2018/2566(RSP))

further to Question for Oral Answer B8‑0007/2018
pursuant to Rule 128(5) of the Rules of Procedure

Maria Lidia Senra Rodríguez, Lola Sánchez Caldentey, Merja Kyllönen, Patrick Le Hyaric, Xabier Benito Ziluaga, Tania González Peñas, Miguel Urbán Crespo, Estefanía Torres Martínez, Younous Omarjee, Javier Couso Permuy, Paloma López Bermejo, Ángela Vallina, Dimitrios Papadimoulis, Stelios Kouloglou on behalf of the GUE/NGL Group

See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B8-0137/2018

Procedure : 2018/2566(RSP)
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European Parliament resolution on the US attack on EU farm support under the CAP (in the context of Spanish olives)


The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the interim decision taken by the US Department of Commerce, which has imposed a tariff on Spanish olives after concluding that the subsidies which the olive producers received in the EU meant that olive products could be imported into the United States at below market price,

–  having regard to the question to the Commission on the US attack on EU farm support under the CAP (in the context of Spanish olives) (O-000006/2018 – B8‑0007/2018),

–  having regard to Rules 128(5) and 123(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas on 22 June 2017 the Coalition for Fair Trade in Ripe Olives, which consists of the two largest US processors of ripe olives, filed a petition with the United States International Trade Commission and Department of Commerce, alleging that an industry in the United States is materially injured or threatened by reason of ‘less than fair value’ (LTFV) and subsidised imports of ripe olives from Spain;

B.  whereas the United States International Trade Commission had determined, pursuant to the Tariff Act of 1930, that there is a reasonable indication that an industry in the United States is materially injured by reason of imports of ripe olives from Spain that are alleged to be sold in the United States at LTFV, and has imposed provisional restrictions on this product;

C.  whereas the common agricultural policy (CAP) measures under investigation are not product-specific and therefore not countervailable under Article 2 of the WTO Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures;

D.  whereas anti-subsidies and anti-dumping analysis to ensure a level playing field for fair competition must consider both social and environmental factors, such as labour rights, social protection and environmental standards;

E.  whereas the Spanish olive sector is key for employment and the Spanish economy, especially for the regions of Andalucía and Extremadura; whereas the potential of this sector and rural areas in these regions could be enhanced though an agricultural model that is based more on diversification and social, economic and environmental sustainability, rather than by one that simply seeks profits for large agro-export companies;

F.  whereas olives fall within the competence of the EU common agricultural policy (CAP); whereas the CAP should guarantee fair prices for producers and human dignity and should not be dependent on international markets and price volatility, nor should it seek to benefit multinationals exclusively; whereas the CAP should also promote the food sovereignty of different territories and local and sustainable production, and should be aligned with international fair trade patterns;

G.  whereas agricultural production in Europe prioritises private profit for large companies over fair incomes for small and medium-sized farms, workers and rural sustainability; whereas CAP aid to olive groves is established on the basis of the number of hectares, does not take into account the number of active farmers, and does not compensate for the fall in prices paid to producers, which are usually below production costs; whereas the olive sector in Andalucía is mainly run by large transnational companies and in many cases involves not only profit-shifting and thus tax-dodging issues, but also a reduction in the sovereign democratic right to regulate;

H.  whereas subsidies play an important role in both US and EU agricultural policy; whereas both agricultural policies are export-oriented and based on agro-industrial production and profits for large companies;

I.  whereas trade policies should not respond to geostrategic interests but should be people-centred; whereas the case of Spanish olives is not the only current one, since the Trump administration has also announced import duties on other sectors;

1.  Deplores the impact that the interim decision taken by the US Department of Commerce to impose a tariff on Spanish olives will have on workers in the Spanish olive sector;

2.  Deplores the fact that US is questioning the EU’s CAP since subsidies play an important role in both territories;

3.  Is concerned that this case could create a precedent to be used against other European agricultural products that fall within the CAP;

4.  Calls on the Commission to prioritise the defence of Spanish small and medium-sized farms and workers in the olive sector in its reaction to the US measures; calls, in addition, on the Commission to establish measures that favour the internal market and internal consumption through short food supply chains in a way that ensures economic, social and environmental sustainability;

5.  Deplores the increasing tendency to subordinate trade policy measures to geostrategic interests and profits for large companies;

6.  Recalls the need to boost democratic fora on international trade-related issues, in which all States are represented on an equal footing, as the platform for solving and overcoming international trade disputes;

7.  Calls on the EU to ensure that the new CAP prioritises support for small and medium-sized farms and diversified agriculture that is not dependent on exports or monocultures, and for food sovereignty, agroecology and local production and consumption of agricultural products in order also to avoid possible inconsistency with external policies, namely development cooperation policy;

8.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the European Commission, the EEAS and United States authorities.

Last updated: 13 March 2018
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