Few days ago the European Commission announced the experts who will participate in the new Agricultural Markets Task Force. This Task Force is to examine the development of the agri-food sector internationally and the prospects and risks for the European agricultural sector in the global market. The aim for the Task Force is to present to the European Commission a report by the autumn 2016 with its findings and recommendations for policy and legislative initiatives.
The European Commission announcement
Given the focus of EU policies on the functioning of the market and the increasing trade liberalisation in recent years, the EU agricultural sector can not remain unaffected by global developments in the food supply chain. The involvement of the European agro-food sector in international markets has created significant opportunities, but also has exposed it to greater volatility in terms of markets and prices.
In this framework, the European Commission for Agriculture and Rural Development has set up an expert group entitled «Agricultural Markets Task Force». Its aim is to discuss all relevant issues such as market transparency, farmers’ access to financial instruments and futures markets to hedge price risks, options to settle under contracts relations and legal possibilities for organising farmers’ collective actions.
In autumn 2016, the Task Force will present a final report with findings, which could include concrete proposals for political and legislative initiatives. Head of this expert group is the former Dutch Minister and University Professor Cees P. Veerman.