The Agency for Rural Investment Financing (AFIR) has paid nearly EUR 7 billion up to the middle of december last year to the beneficiaries of the 2007-2013 National Programme for Rural Development (PNDR). The amount is equivalent to a usage rate of 78 percent of the European funds directed to agriculture and rural development, according to AFIR information, writes Agerpres.
Since the beginning of PNDR in 2014, AFIR received and checked 149,016 financing applications worth EUR 18.3 bln. By mid-december, 96,569 projects had been selected for grants in total of EUR 7.2 billion.
More than 75,000 farmers were supported by the programme, including 12,982 under the age of 40 years. Financing went to 2,702 farms, 1,042 processing units, and 3,600 kilometres of agricultural and forest roads used to collect the products.
The most important event for the local agriculture sector this year by far has been the negotiation and coming into force of the National Program for Rural Development (NPRD) for the period 2014-2020, which regulates how local farmers can gain access to the EUR 8 billion of EU funds available for investment projects until 2020.
Increasing agricultural production through higher productivity and investments in the production of value-added goods are the main two objectives the Romanian authorities had in mind in drafting the NPRD for 2014-2020, according to ministry representatives.