A New Deal for the agro-mechanics sector with policies and strategies with great reach formed for strengthening the competitiveness of European manufacturers and to promote the use of innovative technologies by European farmers. This was the request brought up by CEMA, the association of European agricultural machinery manufacturers, during a conference entitled Machinery for Agriculture: A New European Agenda held on the inaugural day of EIMA International.
CEMA President Richard Markell explained that European manufacturers can rightly claim world leadership for volume, as well as innovations. However, with a rate of renewal at only 1.7% annually, the machinery inventory on the continent can be cited for technology delay conditions. This gap is due mainly to the decline in agricultural income and the small scale of farms working in the primary sector. These factors cause problems for the machinery manufacturing industries grappling with norms and European Union requirements which call for substantial increases in production costs.
Markwell went on to say that undervaluing the specific nature of agricultural mechanics and, moreover, in conditions of fierce competition, means the positions of the manufactures are weakened, as well as are those of farm producers. For this reason, what is needed now is aiming at broader and long-term policies articulated for the requirements of the agro-mechanics sector and those of the agricultural enterprises which use these machines. In this setting, with adequate funding mechanisms, CAP 2020, Common Agricultural Policy, can become an important instrument providing incentives for moving up to the latest generation of agricultural machinery and equipment.