On 1 January 2022, France took over the rotating presidency of the European Union for six months. The Czech Republic will then assume the Presidency in the second half of 2022, followed by Sweden in the first half of 2023.
While the trio of presidencies - France, the Czech Republic and Sweden - have jointly defined the thematic priorities of their common programme, each country in turn identifies the specific topics it wishes to put on the table during its presidency term. For France, three major ambitions are on the agenda: a more sovereign Europe, a new European model for growth and a human Europe.
With regard to agriculture, the French Presidency intends to work towards a sovereign and self-sufficient Europe in terms of food. In particular, it intends to steer the European Council's discussions towards reciprocal environmental and sanitary production standards for European and third-country products, to focus on low-carbon agriculture and compensation for actions to combat climate change carried out by farmers and foresters, and to promote initiatives in favour of agro-ecological transitions and the reduction of pesticide use, which are an integral part of the European Farm to Fork strategy.
In his speech in Strasbourg on 19 January to launch the French presidency, Emmanuel Macron particularly emphasised the core themes of his programme, namely climate change, digital transformation and security as the main challenges facing the European Union. But this opening speech was also marked by a tense political atmosphere in France, reflecting the escalating competition and the very antagonistic views of the presidential candidates on the future of Europe. The French Presidency of the Council of the European Union is indeed coinciding with the French national presidential election, to be held in April 2022. Depending on the outcome of the latter, France's programme for the EU presidency could be modified along the way.
Consult this link to access the full programme of the French Presidency of the EU Council: