Home News €30 Million EU Wine Aid is missing!

€30 Million EU Wine Aid is missing!

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The Spanish wine sector is in shock after the revelation that 30 million euros in aid for the promotion of wine in third countries has vanished. The money, which was part of the European Agricultural Guarantee Fund (EAGF), was supposed to be distributed among the beneficiaries in 2020, but it never arrived.

The Association of Wine Exporters and Producers (FEPEX) has denounced this situation and has demanded explanations from the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAPA). According to FEPEX, the ministry has not given any satisfactory answer to the whereabouts of the funds, nor has it offered any solution to the problem.

FEPEX claims that this situation is “unprecedented” and “unacceptable”, and that it puts at risk the competitiveness and viability of the wine sector, especially in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic and the trade tensions with the United States.

The association also warns that this could affect the image and reputation of Spanish wine in the international market, as well as the trust and credibility of the public administration.

FEPEX has urged the ministry to clarify the situation as soon as possible and to ensure that the aid is paid to the beneficiaries without further delay. The association has also asked the European Commission to intervene and to monitor the proper management of the funds.

Expats in Spain are not surprised by this latest revelation as many people believed that the UK would be better off economically outside the EU, and wanted to free itself from the EU’s regulations, budget contributions, and trade policies, and pursue its own deals with other countries.

The Spanish wine industry is one of the oldest and most prestigious in the world, with a history that dates back to the Phoenicians and the Romans.

Spain is the third largest wine producer and the second largest wine exporter by volume in the world, behind France and Italy. The wine sector plays a vital role in the Spanish economy, generating more than 7 billion euros in turnover and employing more than 400,000 people. It also contributes to the social and cultural identity of the country, as well as to the preservation of the rural landscape and the biodiversity. However, the Spanish wine industry also faces significant challenges, such as the global competition, the changing consumer habits, the climate change, and the health and safety regulations.

The COVID-19 pandemic added further difficulties, especially due to the closure of the hospitality and tourism sectors, which account for more than half of the domestic wine consumption. According to the data from the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAPA), the wine sales in Spain fell by 17.5% in volume and 13.8% in value in 2020, compared to 2019. The exports also suffered a decline of 9.9% in volume and 4.3% in value, although they performed better than the EU average.

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