NRN Romania Newsletter #9 - September 2017
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During 19 – 20 September 2017, the Network Support Unit organized, at Botoșani, the first meeting of the LEADER Working Group (GLL) – event foreseen within the NRN's Action Plan for 2014-2020.
The event was attended by Local Action Groups within the region, as well as members of the NRN, representatives of the Managing Authority for RDP and of the Paying Agency for Rural Investments, both from central and territory level.
Within the meeting emerged an exchange of ideas from the LAGs' practical experience and were discussed administrative aspects regarding the submission and evaluation of projects following the on-going calls for submission, including the priority by the Paying Agency. Furthermore, the discussions also aimed the necessity of organizing events on specific thematic, an example being art.35 of Regulation EU no. 1305/2013.

 On 21-22 September, at Constanța was held a second LEADER Working Group with the LAGs within the area, during which the discussions addressed also the evaluation of projects according to the LAG's guidelines and declared eligible, eligible expenditures and payments, correct framing of projects on measures - aspects answered and clarified by the MA RDP and the PA.
Also, participants were invited to communicate their proposals for themes to be discussed, clarified and resolved during next LEADER Working Group meetings.
Third meeting of the LEADER WG was held at Cluj, during 25-26 September, event attended by Alexandru POTOR - State Secretary within MARD, MA for RDP and PA representatives - from central and territory level.
Discussions included amendments of Local Development Strategies (LDS), improving procedures, as well as extending LAG activity outside LEADER - such as measure 5.2 of Human Capital Operational Program, or measure 1 of RDP, introducing measures specific to EIP Operational Groups within LDS, flexibility of budget allocated to organizing events by the LAGs and many other important issues faced by LAGs.
Furthermore, was highlighted the importance of transnational co-operation projects also with non-EU member states, in order to ensure know-how exchange.
The events also included visits to projects finalised under RDP 2007-2013 and 2014-2020. 
Details about the topics and the presentations held during the LEADER Working Group are posted on NRN site.
The meetings are part of a serie of 24 meetings of the LEADER WG organized at national level and comprised within the NRN's Action Plan.


The following selection and litigation reports have been published on AFIR site:
  • Selection Report for sM4.1 „Investments in agricultural holdings” , livestock component, monthly stage 1, call 01 in 2017;
  • Selection Report for sM6.3 „Business start-up aid for the development of small farms”-  ITI territory - Danube Delta, monthly stage 2, call 01 in 2017
  • Litigation Report for sM4.1 „Investments in agricultural holdings”, mountain areas component, stage 1, call 01 in 2017;
  • Selection Report for sM 7.6 „Investments associated with the protection of cultural heritage” - mountain, monthly stage 1, call 01/2017;
  • Litigation Report for sM 6.4 „Support for investments in creation and development of non-agricultural activities”, monthly stage 2, 02 in 2016;
  • Selection Report for sM7.2 „Investments in creation and modernization of small – scale infrastructure, water/ used water – mountain, stage 1, call 01 in 2017;
  • Selection Report for sM7.6 „Investments associated with the protection of cultural heritage”, stage 1, call 01 in 2017
The reports are published within the Reports and lists (“Rapoarte și liste”) section, and Litigation reports („Rapoarte de contestații”).

Other documents of interest published on AFIR site:
  • Frequently Asked Questions and updated answers regarding the implementing of sM19.4; 
  • „List of financial institutions”, sections addressed to financial tools adapted to beneficiaries of NRDP projects
Documents of interest published on MARD site:
  • Guideline of good practices regarding the right of use the mention of ,,MOUNTAIN PRODUCT";
  • National Strategy for Operational Programs in fruit and vegetables sector for  2018 – 2020:

The Government adopted a Decision establishing the financing of the Program for schools in Romania, for 2017-2023. The financing shall be ensured from the state budget and from European funds
Through this program, Romania participates at the European Union's Program for Schools.
Products being distributed to children:
- Fruits and vegetables: apples, pears, grapes, plums, carrots, parsnip, celery, beetroot, bell pepper, cucumbers.
- Milk and dairy products: drinking milk without add-on of powder milk (heat-treated, pasteurized or UHT milk), dairy fermented products without powder milk (yogurt, sour milk, curdled milk, kefir, and other sorts of fermented or soured products).
- Bakery products: rolls from whole wheat, plain pretzels or dry biscuits from whole wheat without add-ons of sugar, sweetener and other food additives.
The national authorities designated to apply the program are: Ministry of Agriculture and rural Development, Ministry of Education and Ministry of Health.
September edition of EIP Newsletter - Romanian translation has been published to NRN site - within the dedicated section, PEI-AGRI.
 Also, within the same section has been published the translation of the fact-sheet about  Operational Groups: first experiences:
Check EIP-Agri for innovation about:
  • Protein crops to optimize livestock profits
  • Use of ICT in agriculture
  • Horizon 2020 Societal Challenge 2 Infoweek
  • Sustainable bio-stimulants for agriculture

Although there seems to be a tendency towards a common set of values, there still is a constant concern to maintaining traditions and specificity elements existing in various communities. 
Hence, are still organized events within which is promoted the specificity of an area or craft, as well as preserving such elements.
Such an event has been organized during 24-27 August, by the Carpathian Forum at Istebna (Poland), namely the Third Celebration of the Carpathians and gathered wallachians from the Northern Carpathians. 
Participants came from Romania, Ukraine, Czech Republic, Poland, Serbia, Slovakia, transforming  Istebna into the capital of Carpathian tradition and culture.

The event also  included a scientific component within which were held two conferences, „Wallachians in the European and Polish area” and „Protecting biodiversity within Carpathians”. The aspects discussed aimed to raise awareness among the EU Directorates with tasks in the domain, for financial/logistic support for the mountain areas of the Carpathians and preserving the crafts of shepherds and processors of sheep products.
Furthermore, the reunion of the wallachians also promoted cases of good practices, traditional crafts and savourings of products specific to the participant countries.

 The reunion was held at the Pastoral Center in Koniakov, hosted by Piotr KOHUT - shepherd over 1200 sheep, processor of cheese and of other products and his wife Maria KOHUT – manager of am educational farm where pupils from Koniakov, Istebna, Wisla and surroundings learn about sheep, goats,  processing milk products and using the wool.

The Romanian delegation presented good practices such as Poarta de su` Feleac” Ethnographic and Museum Association   - a private traditional museum where children listen stories from the local history and learn about traditional products; a portable workshop of textile puppets “Zâna Cânepii” (Hemp Fairy) - Technical School of Romanian Traditional Arts, as well as a unique bells' collection of Cornel COSTELIUC.
The Romanian National Rural Network attended the event through its representatives of the County Rural Development Center Sibiu.
The wallachians are present for centuries but also today all through Europe and especially within the Carpathians and have as trade - depending on the regions - shepherding and connex activities such as sharing grasslands and incomes, distribution of sheep - essential ways of life for the entire community.

Our thanks to the Polish Rural Network and the Carpathian Forum for providing the articles about the event and photos used to illustrate the present article.


Representatives of the Romanian NRN and Managing Authority for RDP attended during the 18-22 September, at Budapest, the field trip and conference organized by the Hungarian National Rural Network, titled "Aid is close - Networking together".

The event had as objectives:
  • Cooperation approach through LEADER and support of the National Rural Networks for the Local Action Groups;
  • Presenting the activity of the Hungarian National Rural Network and of the collaboration with the National Rural Networks from other states;
  • Innovation in agriculture: examples of Operational Groups;
  • Added value of cooperation in bio-economy research;
  • Examples of projects regarding the development of co-operative/co-operation systems.
Participants and speakers at the event included the European Network for Rural Development through its Team Leader, the president of the Hungarian National Rural Network, the chairman of the Hungarian Chamber of Agriculture, the Deputy State Secretary for strategic agri- rural development, representatives of NRNs from Poland, Sweden, Romania, England, as well as representatives of Hungarian associations active and involved in agriculture and rural development.
Within the conference were signed the following three collaboration protocols/partnerships:
  • Collaboration partnership between the Hungarian National Rural Network and the Development Programs  Office of Hungary;
  • Collaboration partnership between the Hungarian National Rural Network and the Romanian National Federation of Local Action Groups;
  • Collaboration partnership between the Hungarian National Rural Network and Hungarian LEADER Association.

The conclusions following the debates held within the event highlighted aspects such as:
  • Importance of collaboration between state institutes from every state and of exchange of experience between EU states;
  • National Rural Network - through tools and means of communication must identify interested parts/stakeholders and support active involvement of rural communities in the rural development process;
  • Clear definition of the role of interested persons involved in local development, by education referring to rural potential, transfer of knowledge, supporting diversity and encourage participation;
  • LEADER is an efficient development method for communities in the rural areas - working to decrease disparities between rural and urban;
  • Future progresses for a sustainable agricultural, aquaculture, forestry growth should focus on transnational research, innovation and cooperation for a development based on knowledge, also by supporting Operational Groups.

Photos provided by the Hungarian National Rural Network


During 19-20 September 2017, the Evaluation Helpdesk Biroul together with the Latvian Ministry of Agriculture organized at Riga the "How to report on evaluation in the Annual Implementation Reports: experiences and outlook" workshop.

The workshop discussed the main challenges faced by the member states concerning the reporting of  evaluation activities within the Annual Implementation Report presented in 2017 and gathered potential solutions from various actors such as Managing Authority, evaluators etc.Furthermore, the workshop gave the possibility to the participants to reflect on the functioning of the RDP evaluation process, depending on:
  • Coordonation and management: planning, allocation of resources, contracting an independent evaluator and collaboration with data providers;
  • Methodology and tools:  methods and indicators used adequately to respond to evaluation taking into account the availability of data and resources;
  • Reporting: lessons learned regarding the reporting of evaluation reports and other reporting formats (reports, workshops).
The feedback received from the member states' representatives shall contribute to the simplification and improvement of evaluation reporting activities within the AIR of RDPs to be presented in 2019, as well as the ex-post evaluation.
More details here:
follow-up România Tradițiilor Creative – may 2017

Launched on 24th of May 2017 within the Romanian Design Week, the Creative Traditions ( RO:Tradiții Creative) platform organized during  6-10 September the Creative Traditions' Forum - event  hosted by the Museum of Romanian Peasant.
Creative Traditions is an invite to action not only for protecting the traditions, but as well as for supporting the transfer and capitalization of crafts - which, unfortunately seem to disappear. The first edition of the forum gathered cafters and entrepreneurs, creative industries, researchers involved in preserving, capitalizing and promoting the local specificity, from circular economy/agriculture to crafts threatened by disappearance, clothing and current methods of promotion.

Annexation of creativity to traditions indicates most of all a method of using them: not only preservation, holy keeping of traditions, but also their productive capitalization - from a future perspective and not only from a past one [perspective]. We all have a heritage, the question is: what are we doing with it?
Creative traditions suggests that we
can do only do two different but complementary things: 1) to carefully guard  them, include in patrimony , watch and worship them (legacy) and 2) make them work, use them as organic development for the future (heritage)”- prof. Vintilă Mihăilescu,  Martor magazine  no. 22/2017.

Traditions, roots continue to be a source of inspiration, regardless if we talk about gastronomy, clothing, recycling, circular use of wood, wool, gathering and publishing of local folk stories and many other such actions which fascinate but not always bring long term profit to those who still practice them. For villagers, people of the place, these trades and other specific to the areas have been and still are a way of living.

The Creative Traditions Forum has highlighted the alarming stage within which the crafts and rural trades currently are, especially the threat with disappearance - given the low interest for taking over and continuing and thus lack of apprentices, problems that require the involvement of us all: public institutions, civil society, local community, education, infrastructure, financing etc.
Thus, the forum brought to the attention of the public initiatives of creative capitalization/use of  the local specificity and emphasized that traditions must be seen not only as inspiration sources but also as cultural and economic ones (sources).

The last day of the forum has also included a field trip and the opening of the eco-pier at Piscu by School of Piscu (Școala de la Piscu) – one of the initiatives for promoting the specificity and local trades through education, community, tourism and use/capitalization of local potential.
The first edition of the Creative Traditions' Forum took place under the high patronage of the Commission Representation in Romania.
More details here:


The Agency for Financing Rural Investments (AFIR) organized, on the 26th September, the National Symposium „Sustainable development of the rural area”.
„Our objective is to fully access the entire allocation available under RDP until 2020. It's an assumed objective and which must be achieved.
This is an objective of agriculture and of the country, for which we must all work" declared  the minister of agriculture
, Petre DAEA.

The event was attended by high officials of the Romanian Parliament and Government , state secretaries and directors within the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, as well as of subordinated structures, representatives of academia, partner institutions, and social partners within agriculture and rural.
„This symposium has a particular importance as it carries a double significance: on one side, was necessary an analysis of the impact of  European funds implemented by the Agency in the rural areas, and on the other side we are celebrating 17 years since the setting-up of the SAPARD Agency on 28th September 2000" - declared AFIR's general director, Adrian-Ionuț CHESNOIU.

Thousands of people gathered at the end of last week, at the pastoral festival "Descent of sheep" held at Baia de Fier, Gorj county.
The event achieved its 25th edition and gathered folk assemblies renowned from Gorj and counties such as Olt, Vâlcea, Argeș, but also an assembly from Bulgaria.
The event was attended by a large number of people interested in sheep breeding.
On the last day the festival hosted the parade of folk costumes, songs and dances.


Professional associations of breeders and providers of reproductive material, organized on 1 and 2 September at Târgu Mureș, the second edition of National Day of  "Bălțată".
Partner organizations shared their positive experience from research, production, genetics and improvement. This year's edition included the participation of dr. Georg Rohrmoser, general secretary of European Simmental Federation.
Claudiu Frânc, president of the Romanian Bovine Breeders Federation (FCBR), declared that Romania has been invited to become member of the European Simmental Federation. following the efforts of Romanian breeders to preserve and develop this breed which has reached 60% of country's bovine population.


On the 17th September, in Săsciori, Loman village, was held one of the most impressive pastoral traditions, namely the descent of sheep, event marking the return home of shepherds.
The „Descent of sheep” represents one of the most important moments of the pastoral calendar, tradition passed from generation to generation, announcing the preparation for winter.
Among the participants was also the minister of agriculture, Petre DAEA - who has been asked to support the homologation of a local sheep breed  -  Țurcană Oacheșa de Loman.
The event was organized by the  Ovine Breeders' Association of Săsciori, the Local Council and Mayor's office of  Săsciori, with the support of Alba County Council.

On the 24th September, at Costești, Hunedoara county was held the 13th edition of the ovine expo  „Țurcana-queen of mountains”,  organized by Dacia Ovine Breeders Association.
Țurcana is the most popular Romanian sheep breed, preferred by shepherds for their resilience, but also for the milk, meat and wool productions.
The event was also attended by the minister of agriculture and rural development, Petre Daea, who met and talked with the shepherds gathered at the expo. The minister  declared that measures have already been taken so that shepherds would not longer be forced to throw away the wool, at least 8 regional storage centers being planned to be set up.
We've launched the support program for ovine breeders, starting from the fact that until now a large amount of wool was thrown away.  It is also foreseen in the government's program and we established a form of support for stimulating wool sale, there is also a GD (governmental decision) and a program that started to work: up to this date there are over  32.000 shepherds who registered to capitalize the wool.
There are few producers who still know how to process the wool, located mostly in Sibiu county.

One of such producers came to  Costești from Miercurea Sibiului with  blankets, vests and other woll clothing.  I have been working [processing] wool since 1978. We receive the wool from the shepherds, we spin it and make warm fabrics."
10 October
10 years of LEADER/CLLD implementation in Bulgaria
Pravets, Bulgaria
13-15 October
AGRO OLTENIA – first edition, Craiova
11 October
25 years of LEADER/Community-led local development
Brussels, Belgium
24 october
1st Meeting of Thematic Group on ‘Sustainable Management of Water and Soils’
Bruseles, Belgium
11-12 October
Lisbon, Portugal
26 October
1st Meeting of Thematic Group on ‘Smart Villages’
Brussels, Belgium

Edited by the National Rural Network of Romania (RNDR)

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