In view of the ongoing protests by farmers, North Rhine-Westphalia's Prime Minister Hendrik Wüst has proposed a committee similar to the Coal Commission. It is time for a “broad agricultural alliance” and a “social contract for domestic agriculture,” said the CDU politician to the “Rheinische Post”.
“From the center of society, the Agrarian Alliance can both ensure peace and show opportunities for local agriculture.” The federal government should convene a commission with all relevant stakeholders on the future of agriculture.
“The death of farms is real”
From the point of view of the NRW head of government, representatives from agriculture, politics, retail, environmental and animal protection associations, trade unions and science should come together under the coordination of the federal government. Agriculture must remain strong, but many businesses have already given up. “The death of farms is real.” The traffic light coalition had “simply slammed an entire profession” with its decisions, criticized Wüst.
With a week of action, farmers are currently putting pressure on the traffic light's already weakened plans for subsidy cuts. As part of savings in the 2024 federal budget, the preferential treatment for agricultural diesel that has existed for over 70 years is to be gradually abolished.
So far, companies have been able to get a partial refund of the energy tax - with a reimbursement of 21.48 cents per liter. The coalition originally wanted to cut off the aid completely immediately. Now there will be a phase-out over three years. The federal government had already withdrawn a planned deletion of the vehicle tax exemption for farmers last week.