AGRIFISH COUNCIL OF 18 MARCH
On 18 March at Bruselles was held thethe second meeting of the AgriFish Council as within the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the European Union.
The Council had a public exchange of views on the whole CAP reform package on the basis of the presidency's state of play report, and suggested changes to the text of all three regulations: the CAP strategic plans, the horizontal and Common Market Organisation regulations, and ministers were invited to comment on these texts and provide guidance to the presidency on the next steps.
In the context of the CAP debate, ministers were also informed about coupled income support and eco-schemes.
Also, the Council had a discussion on the updated EU Bioeconomy Strategy,asministers shared, in particular, ideas and good practices implemented at national and regional level, with a view to providing input for an effective and speedy EU-wide implementation of the updated strategy, and exploring potential synergies with the CAP and the new research and innovation framework programme.
More details here and here
SMART VILLAGES –STATUS OF DEFINITION
On 21-22 February, at Bruxelles took place the workshop of ‘Smart eco-social villages’ project - aiming to provide a definition of ‘Smart Villages’ and case studies from across EU.
Smart villages are communities in rural areas that use innovative solutions to improve their resilience, building on local strengths and opportunities, relying on a participatory approach to develop and implement their strategy to improve their economic, social and/or environmental conditions, in particular by mobilising solutions offered by digital technologies.
Smart Villages benefit from cooperation and alliances with other communities and actors in rural and urban areas.
Also, on 6th March, was held the 7th meeting of the ENRD Thematic Work Group on Smart Villages, within which were analyzed the financing opportunities regarding the implementation of smart villages approach during 2021-2027, within CAP Strategic Plans.
More information related to the smart villages concept and definition can be consulted on ENRD’s Smart Villages Portal , as well on rndr.ro’s dedicated section on smart villages – history, reports and meetings – in RO .
BEST PRACTICE WORKSHOP PREPARING THE EX-ANTE EVALUATION OF THE CAP STRATEGIC PLANS
On 21 March, in Brussels, took place the Best Practice Workshop on Preparing the ex-ante evaluation of the CAP Strategic Plans
The event included exchanges of experience and lessons learnt from the ex-ante evaluation of Rural Development Programs for 2014-2020, as well as the legal framework for the ex-ante evaluation of the period 2021-2027, novelties and financial instruments in within the framework of the CAP Strategic Plans.
Information and presentations held during the event can be consulted here
| INFORMAL MEETING OF THE DIRECTORS – GENERAL FOR RURAL DEVELOPMENT
On 28 March, the Palace of Parliament hosted the Informal Meeting of the Directors of Rural Development of the EU Member States, held in the context of the Romanian Presidency of the Council of the European Union, organized by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MADR) through the Managing Authority for the National Program for Rural Development .
The event was attended by representatives of all EU Member States' management and rural development departments, representatives of the European Commission and other EU organizations and the main topic focused on ways to support young farmers.
On behalf of the European Commission, Mihail Dumitru Deputy Director General DG AGRI talked about the Commission's proposals on the future programming period, emphasizing that the key priorities of the CAP post 2020 will be to support young farmers, thus ensuring the continuity of the current program.
Within the meeting, Florentina Tudor - Director General of the National Human Development Program (NRDP), highlighted the importance of significant sums allocated under rural development programs by a number of Member States in order to support young farmers and identify solutions to the many rural challenges.
Another important and current priority topic was supporting young farmers and start-ups through financial instruments as well as the importance of making agricultural policies more efficient by directing funds to the real needs of young farmers - illustrated by a series of presentations by representatives of the Association of Young European Farmers and by Romanian farmers supported by the NRDP.
DEBATE ON FUTURE OF FAMILY FARMS
On 12th March, minister Petre Daea officially opened the conference on the future of family farms in view of the launch of the "UN Decade on Family Farms (2019-2028)", the first event organized by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in Bucharest, in the context of the Romanian Presidency of the EU Council.
The objective of this meeting was to facilitate the exchange of experiences and best practices, as well as discussions on the challenges faced by family farms in Europe.
In the opening of his speech, minister Daea stated: "We welcome FAO initiative regarding the Decade of Family Farms, which aims to provide technical assistance to governments concerning the support and exchange of best practices, the maintenance of family farming as a priority on the international agenda."
Petre Daea also underlined that farmers need access to science, technology, innovation to:
- make their entrepreneurship successful and to ensure the transition from subsistence agriculture to sustainable production and market capitalization. At the same time, particular attention should
- be paid to supporting the access of women and young people in rural areas.
UN data show that family farms account for over 500 million farms worldwide. In the fisheries sector, 90% of the 140 million people involved worldwide are small-scale fishers who provide over 60% of fish for direct human consumption.
The FAO conducted the first discussion during the conference, analyzing the role of family farms for the sustainable development, addressing the contribution of small farmers in the creation of 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and Sustainable Development Goals and explained the general situation of family farms in Europe and Central Asia.
The support for small farmers and family farms is one of the four FAO regional priorities in Europe and Central Asia, where the FAO seeks to improve policy development, sustainable agricultural production and rural subsistence, while reducing rural poverty.
The main common views in the exposures were: the need for public policies to support family farms, improve socio-economic inclusion, increase knowledge of family farms, equal rights for women, support for family farms to achieve sustainable development, and the creation of new jobs, support for small farms in order to adapt to climate change.
Within the second part of the conference, the General Director of the Managing Authority of the National Rural Development Programme delivered a speech in which she made known the situation of the Romanian family farms.
Thus, family farms remain the best way to ensure the viability of food production, sustainable management of natural resources and biodiversity, and the preservation of an authentic rural life.
More details and presentations can be found here .
The debate hosted by the Ministry of Agriculture is the first event in 2019 related to this issue of major interest for the world agricultural sector that has to provide quality food for a growing population.
INFO DAY - Information and Promotion Actions for Agricultural and Food Products
On 21st February, MARD organized and hosted the "INFO DAY - Information and Promotion Actions for Agricultural and Food Products" seminar, in collaboration with representatives of the Executive Agency for Consumers, Health, Agriculture and Food (CHAFEA) of the European Commission.
The promotion program is aimed at professional and inter professional organizations, producer groups and organizations, as well as those from the agri-food sector, which have as object promotional activities.
European Commission officials, Marta de Medina-Rosales and Vincenza Ferrucci, presented the main provisions of this funding program, namely EU promotion policy, work program and calls for proposals for 2019.
Thematic priorities, allocated budgets, eligible entities and products, the markets to be targeted and the procedure for the submission of project proposals were also detailed.
The deadline for submitting projects is mid April 2019.
More details can be found on the website www.madr.ro, section Agriculture - Promotion of agri-food products.The press release can be read entirely here.
19TH MEETING OF LEADER WORK GROUP - PIATRA NEAMT
On 14 - 15 March, at Piatra Neamț, was held the meeting of the LEADER Work Group, on the topic of social innovation, services and cooperation sM 19.3.
Within the event were debated subjects such as:
Among the subjects discussed were the role of the social infrastructure projects implemented under local development strategies (LDS), as well as the necessity to develop the projects within rural communities and were given clarifications regarding the implementation, submission and payment deadlines regarding the subsequent contracts concluded between LAGs and AFIR, as well as concerning sM 19.3 component B.
- Accreditation of social service providers;
- Implementing service projects and mixed projects;
- Managing the completion period of the Subsequent Contract 1 and preparing for the Subsequent Financing Contract 2;
- Consolidated version of Guide 19.3 - component B Implementation of cooperation activities of the Local Action Groups;
- Clarifications on implementation of sM 19.2 and sM. 19.4.
The event gathered experts from MARD - Managing Authority for NRDP, of the Ministry of Labour and Social Justice, AFIR and representatives of the Local Action Groups.
During April-June, are to be organized 4 more LEADER WG.
WORK SESSION ON sM 19.2 AT STÂNA - CLUJ
On 25-28 February, at Stâna – Cluj Napoca county was held the work session dedicated to beneficiaries of the association measure part of sM 19.2.
The event was organized by Civitas Foundation for Civil Society
– Cluj Napoca, within the Coopnet
project on network of facilitators regarding the development of associative structures.
The session created the context for beneficiaries, LAGs, MA and PA county offices to interact and clarify various aspects related to project implementation.
AGRICULTURAL HIGHSCHOOLS - LOCAL HUBS FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF SMALL AND MEDIUM FARMS
On 14th March, at the Technological Highschool in Dorna Candrenilor - Suceava County was held the roundtable organized within the program "Agricultural Highways - Local Hubs for the Development of Small and Medium Farmers", a project run by World Vision Romania Junior Achivement Romania, Civitas Foundation for Civil Society - Cluj Branch, Center for Economic Education and Development in Romania and Romanian Center for European Policies, in partnership with the Romanian-American Foundation.
The event was attended by farmers, farmers and rural tourism entrepreneurs from the Dornelor Basin, representatives of local public authorities, as well as high school students in the final years.
During the workshop organized on this occasion,the main problems faced by farmers, entrepreneurs and rural students were identified and analyzed, to which the invited specialists and the participants tried to find solutions.
Of the identified problems, we mention:
• Lack of information, advice
• Lack of associations and cooperatives
• Lack of outlets
• Difficulty in accessing funds / credits
• Need for training courses for different qualifications / specializations
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