“Concluding Conference on Empowering Rural Stakeholders”, 8 April 2014, Brussels, Belgium


Commissioner Ciolos will host the ministers of Agriculture and stakeholders’ representatives from all SWG member countries and from Turkey on the Concluding Conference on “Empowering Rural Stakeholders” scheduled for Tuesday, 8th April 2014 in Brussels, Belgium, with the participation of representatives from the European Parliament.

The Conference will be the second part from the event on empowering rural stakeholders, after the completion of the travelling workshops and national conferences in Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia (30.03 – 02.04.2014). The overall event was jointly initiated by the Regional Rural Development Standing Working Group (SWG) in the Southeast Europe and the PREPARE Partnership for Rural Europe, with the support of TAIEX.

The aim of these events is raising awareness among all rural development stakeholders, in particular among local action groups, of the opportunities and means for involvement and cooperation in relevant policy and decision making at a national level and at drawing the attention of national administrations and decision-makers to the importance of having structured means for involving stakeholders, and in particular local actors in rural areas, in designing and implementing agricultural and rural development policies.

This initiative builds on the experience gained in the EU with the LEADER method, which has

proven to be a major success story in mobilising rural stakeholders for cooperation on a subregional level and in building good relations between administrations and the key actors in rural development.

This event will contribute to the continuation of the cooperation between the beneficiaries (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo*, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey) and the EC, DG AGRI aiming to ensure that IPARD makes the maximum contribution possible to the concerned rural areas.

Concluding Conference-Draft Agenda


* Kosovo* “This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence.”