16 JANUARY 2002

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Malta’s requests special agriculture arrangements

In the current accession negotiations with the European Union, the Maltese Government is making a total of 42 requests for special arrangements in the sector of agriculture. These special arrangements are explained in full details in Malta’s negotiating paper for agriculture which was tabled in the House of Representatives on Monday evening by Foreign Minister Dr Joe Borg.

The agriculture position is divided in two parts: the first on veterinary and phytosanitary and the second part deals with the common market organisation and rural development.

The special arrangements being requested by Malta include 10 transitional periods, five derogations, various support measures and others. In its position paper Malta is requesting that all its agricultural land be recognised as a less-favoured are due to severe handicaps and structural problems of agricultural land in Malta. Because of this, Malta is requesting also "that its farmers receive higher compensatory payments than the maximum indicated" in EU regulations governing agricultural funds. The Maltese Government will be submitting a rural development programme to the European Commission by the first quarter of this year.

The Business Times, Network House, Vjal ir-Rihan San Gwann SGN 07
Tel: (356) 382741-3, 382745-6 | Fax: (356) 385075 | e-mail: editorial@networkpublications.com.mt