On 1 July 2021, Slovenia will take over the Presidency of the Council of the EU. For the next six months, Slovenia will lead the Council’s efforts on decision-making in the EU. Specifically, it will focus on facilitating the EU's recovery and reinforcing its resilience, reflecting on the future of Europe, strengthening the rule of law and European values, and increasing security and stability in the European neighbourhood.
Strengthening the EU’s resilience to crises and economic recovery based on the green and digital transition will be the Presidency’s key priorities. In the framework of mitigating the consequences of the pandemic, it will implement the Next Generation EU instrument and the Recovery and Resilience Facility, both aiming to facilitate the adoption of national recovery plans and to accelerate the green and digital transition.
Encouraging and rewarding the use of clean and safer fertilizers is fully in line with the Presidency’s objectives.
Slovenia will lead on preparing the Council’s response to the key legislative initiatives, such as the new EU Soil Strategy. It will explore how to protect soil fertility, reduce erosion and increase soil organic matter. The strategy will consider challenges such as identifying contaminated sites, restoring degraded soils, defining the conditions for their good ecological status and improving the monitoring of soil quality.
On the ongoing legislative files, such as the Farm to Fork Strategy, the country’s Agriculture Minister Podgoršek pointed out that "it is the right path for the transition of agriculture". He added "Agriculture must continue to provide safe, quality and accessible food and, at the same time, act responsibly towards natural resources. The transition to a nature-friendly food system is a major challenge. This is particularly true for the balance between the primary task of agriculture, which is to provide quality and healthy food, and the legitimate expectations of the society about the lower use of pesticides and fertilizers, the reduction of food waste and waste, better animal welfare, lower carbon footprint, and greater emphasis on healthy and nutritious food. Slovenia believes that it is necessary to address the areas highlighted in the Strategy".
With regard to the CAP Reform, if a political agreement is reached under the Portuguese Presidency, Slovenia will ensure, during its mandate, that the political agreement is suitably reflected in the wording of the regulations and that the regulations are officially adopted as soon as possible. “Slovenia will also pay particular attention to the discussion on the preparation of strategic plans that Member States are due to coordinate with the European Commission in the process of these plans being approved by the European Commission”.