Opinion factsheet


    Innovation and modernisation of the rural economy

    : CDR 2799/2015
    : LÄNTS, Randel
    : PES (Party of European Socialists)
    : NAT
    : Adopted
    : 10/02/2016
    Recognition of rural territories as development and innovation hubs which contribute to the Europe 2020 strategy in the framework of a balanced relationship with urban hubs in order to achieve the goal of territorial cohesion enshrined in the Treaty of Lisbon.
    White paper from the EC on rurality
    The CoR opinion is mentioned in the new Cork declaration: "Considering the opinion of the Committee of the Regions concerning innovation and modernisation of the rural economy, the opinion of the European Economic and Social Committee on Rural Development Programmes as well as the valuable reflections by other rural stakeholder groups on the prospect for rural and agricultural development";

    The CoR got the support of Mr Siekierski (PL/EPP), Chair of the EP AGRI Committee, for a white paper on rurality after the joint EESC-NAT/CoR-NAT meeting held on 9 November 2016;

    The CoR got the support of Mr Andrieu (FR/PES), Vice chair of the AGRI Committee, Mr De Castro (IT/PES), PES coordinator on the white paper on rurality during the joint EP-AGRI/CoR-NAT meeting held on 29 November 2016;

    The CoR study on the evolution of the European budget dedicated to rural areas is on the agenda of the next civil dialog groups meeting on rural development.

    - wishes to draw attention to the fact that austerity measures and the general funding cuts for agriculture and rural development threaten the future viability of rural areas and thus contradict the principle of territorial cohesion in the EU;

    - requests to increase overall EU financial support for rural development in order to counterbalance the growing concentration of agricultural production, which is leading to major regional disparities, and put a cap on transfers from the second to the first pillar;

    - to consider, within the Multiannual Financial Framework mid-term review, allocating more EU funds available for local development in the 2014-2020 programming period;

    - supports the call made by the European Countryside Movement (ECM) and the enlarged European Parliament Intergroup on Rural, Mountainous and Remote Areas to the Commission to draw up a white paper to serve as the starting point for a post-2020 development policy for rural areas and to strive for more differentiated approaches and take rural interests into account in all EU policy areas, as is currently the case for cities;

    - regrets the results of the interim report on the implementation of the operational programmes which highlights the fact that at present, only 11% of ERDF funds are set to be allocated to rural areas;

    - asks to modernise the vocational training opportunities on offer in rural areas and to tailor this to worldwide competition conditions and the needs of local businesses and to further develope ESF funding to vocational training in rural areas;

    - calls, with the help of new-generation access networks promoting the implementation of the Digital Agenda for Europe 2020, for more intensive efforts to develop high-speed internet in rural areas;

    - expresses its firm support for the local development coordination platform to be set up by the European Commission.



The Rural Summit 2017

On 22 and 23 March the Brabant Kempen House organized the first conference for rural areas in Europe,

The Rural Summit 2017.

The conference was a follow-up to the nomination of the Brabantse Kempen as one of the 21 smartest rural regions of the world in 2016. The conference drew a picture of the challenges that rural regions face in terms of economic growth, sustainability, aging and the new opportunities created by the (extended) use of digital applications.

More than 200 participants from 12 countries shared their ideas and experiences on the question if the difference between urban and rural is fading because of the possibilities created by internet and broadband. International speakers presented their examples of digitally connected regions which lead to stronger economic and more vital rural regions with a more robust connection to urban areas.

The conference was attended by delegates and directors from different European regions. To ensure more attention and policies for rural regions in Europe, the Commissioner of King Wim van de Donk encouraged everyone to commit themselves to enhancing connections between European rural regions.

Companies and organizations from the Brabant Kempen region participated in ‘best practices’ during thematic sessions. The Brabant Kempen House looks back on an inspiring, informative and connecting convention. The conference was made possible by, chairwoman and Mayor Anja Thijs-Rademakers of the municipality Eersel, in cooperation with the Kempen municipalities, the Province of Brabant, the Metropolitan Region Eindhoven, Brainport Development, industry and education partners and the Intelligent Community Forum.

The Brabant Kempen House is going to build the European network of smart rural regions further and seeks to work on concrete projects with partners that contribute to a sustainable vital Kempen in the Brainport region, but also those of other European rural areas.

22 Mar

EESC public hearing on villages and small towns

EESC public hearing on villages and small towns

14 Feb

How the future CAP can contribute to the objectives set out in the EU investment plan to relaunch growth and jobs in Europe

Rapporteur attend the confernece How the future CAP can contribute to the objectives set out in the EU investment plan to relaunch grown and jobs in Europe

08 Feb

Joint conference between our NAT commission and the AGRI Committee of the European Parliament

The rapporteur presented the CoR position on the Rural agenda during the joint conference between our NAT commission and the AGRI Committee of the European Parliament. The main objective of this meeting is to get the support of the AGRI Committee for the White paper on rurality which is the main priority of the NAT commission in the field of agriculture and rural development and also the main NAT topic for reinforced cooperation with the European Parliament

29 Nov

CoR representation at the European Conference on Rural Development

Exactly 20 years after the ground-breaking European Conference on Rural Development in Cork, which concluded with the signing of the Cork Declaration on Rural Development, the European Commission, under the responsibility of Commissioner Phil Hogan has organised a second European Conference on Rural Development in Cork on 5-6 September 2016.

The Conference was aimed at bringing together 300 or so stakeholders in order to discuss current and future challenges of farming and rural areas, as well as potential policy responses - with a view to drafting a new Cork Declaration.

05 Sep

CoR Commission activity

Adoption of the opinion by the NAT commission

23 Nov

CoR Plenary Session

Discussion with Commisioner Hogan on the future of rural development policy

12 Oct

CoR Commission activity

NAT/RUMRA conference on Rural territories in the 2014-2020 policiesof territorial cohesion and inclusive growth with Mercedes BRESSO, MEP, president of RUMRA, Franc BOGOVIC, vice chair of RUMRA, Member of the European Parliament, and Corina Cretu, European Commissioner for Regional Policy

21 Sep

CoR Commission activity

Discussion on the draft opinion during the NAT Commission meeting

20 Sep

Rapporteur's activities

The rapporteur meets with a representative of the European Commission's DG REGIO

13 Jul

CoR Commission activity

Discussion on the work document in NAT Commission

18 Jun

CoR Commission activity

NAT seminar on innovation and modernisation of rural economy with Jozo Radoš vice chair of the European Parliament’s Intergroup on Rural, Mountainous and Remote Areas (RUMRA) and Joaquim Oliveira Martins, Head of the OECD Regional Development Policy Division

17 Jun

CoR Commission activity

The NAT commission appointed Mr Randel Länts rapporteur for the opinion on innovation and modernisation of rural economy

04 May