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Five proposals for a European model of the countryside


  • Louis Pascal Mahé
  • François Ortalo-Magné


The inability of European institutions to reform the common agricultural policy is a landmark case of political failure. The CAP has led to several policy failures. It helps mainly the well-off farmers in a very wasteful way; it provides excessive incentives for non-competitive primary commodities, specialization and intensification, with adverse impacts on rural natural resources. Economic principles support long-term programmes aimed only at market failures: the respect of environmental norms and the provision of rural public goods in line with society's demands. While not interfering with market mechanisms, the instruments we propose acknowledge the diverse economic potential of European rural areas and the variety of goods and services provided by the rural space. Political feasibility and social concerns may require a transitory period of direct income support for current farmers. We argue, however, against any direct payments for new farmers in order to prevent future dependence on public support. Copyright Centre for Economic Policy Research, Centre for Economic Studies, Maison des Sciences de l'Homme 1999.

Suggested Citation

  • Louis Pascal Mahé & François Ortalo-Magné, 1999. "Five proposals for a European model of the countryside," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 14(28), pages 87-131, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ecpoli:v:14:y:1999:i:28:p:87-131

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    Cited by:

    1. Przezborska, Lucyna, 2005. "Classification of Agri-Tourism / Rural Tourism SMEs in Poland (on the Example of the Wielkopolska Region)," 2005 International Congress, August 23-27, 2005, Copenhagen, Denmark 24670, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    2. Vavra, Pavel & Colman, David, 2003. "The analysis of UK crop allocation at the farm level: implications for supply response analysis," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 697-713, May.

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