EU-supported Georgian LAGs establish close partnership with the European Leader Inspired Network Community
12.12.2018, Tbilisi – On 28-29 November 2018, the representatives of the EU-supported Borjomi Local Action Group (LAG) and ENPARD implementing partner organisation Mercy Corps took part in the Leader Inspired Network Community (LINC) meeting in Vienna, Austria. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss how future LINC seminars could be even better: What things were learned from previous seminars and what new things could be tried out. Operators in the LINC network have reviewed the results of the several international projects they executed and discussed the future cooperation.
In the scope of the meeting, the Georgian delegation discussed the ways of cooperation between the Georgian LAGs and the LINC’s European partners. Despite the fact that at present Georgia is only an associate member of EU, it was agreed that the organizers of the LINC events will invite Georgian LAGs to all LINC workshops and conferences.
Moreover, the European partners considered the possibility to arrange the LINC conference in Georgia in future. Hosting LINC conference is a great opportunity for all communities involved in rural development as it allows wider networking possibilities and prospects to implement international projects with the European LAGs. Hence, it was agreed that the partners will further discuss the issue at the LINC workshop to be held in Borjomi next year. To this end, Borjomi LAG will consult with all relevant stakeholders, including the Delegation of the European Union to Georgia, Ministry of Environment Protection and Agriculture, Georgian Association of Local Action Groups (GALAG) and ENPARD implementing partner organisations.
LINC is a European Leader conference which combines European exchange of experience with sport events and European culinary. It is an initiative from LAGs and National Network Units for rural development in Austria, Germany, Estonia and Finland. The conference aims to present the results and innovative methods achieved using the European LEADER approach to rural development, exchange the professional experience of representatives of the European LEADER areas and establish links for international cooperation.
The EU is supporting agriculture and rural development in Georgia through the ENPARD programme. Implemented since 2013 with a total budget of EUR 179.5 million, the main goal of ENPARD is to reduce rural poverty. The first phase of ENPARD in Georgia focused on developing the potential of agriculture. The second phase focuses on creating economic opportunities for rural population that go beyond agricultural activities. More information on ENPARD is available at www.enpard.ge