Smart villages and the rural development program

Rural Development in Romania is managed at the national level through a Rural Development Program (RDP), financed by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) and national contributions. The RDP sets out priority approaches and actions to meet the needs of the specific geographical area it covers.

Rural development funding through the EAFRD is part of a wider framework of European Structural and Investment Funds (ESI funds), which also includes regional development, social, cohesion and fisheries funds. They are managed at national level, by each EU member state, based on partnership agreements, strategic plans that underline the country’s objectives and investment priorities.

Examples of expected achievements:

  • Over 184,000 people will benefit from training under the RDP. Over 60,000 farmers and micro and small business owners in rural areas will receive specific advisory services; more than 200 collaborative projects will be supported, including the establishment of 24 Operational Groups under the European Innovation Partnership (EIP).
  • The RDP will support investments in the modernization of nearly 3,400 farms and cooperatives, the development of over 30,000 small farms and the support of over 9,400 young farmers.
  • In the forestry sector, investments will be supported to expand the limited network of forest roads by over 900 km.
  • The RDP aims to modernize and support the investments of almost 300 food processing units, to establish 62 new producer groups with the participation of 620 holdings; nearly 15,000 farmers will take part in a mutual fund so that they can better mitigate the effects of adverse weather and other risks.
  • Over 1.3 million ha of agricultural land (almost 10% of Romania’s total agricultural land) and over 800,000 ha (12%) of forests will benefit from payments for the environment and climate, or for forest conservation; almost 3000 projects will be supported for the establishment/development of non-agricultural enterprises in rural areas and almost 27000 jobs will be created, of which over 2000 will be created under LEADER. The program will support 120 Local Action Groups (LAGs) that will implement Local Development
  • Strategies (LDS) covering 100% of eligible rural territory.
  • The RDP will support almost 800 projects to improve small-scale rural infrastructure and living conditions for around 27% of rural areas.