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Objectifs et outils pour une Europe rurale intelligente

Opinion Number: CDR 4320/2022
Rapporteur: SRŠEŇ Radim
Commission: NAT
Status: Adopted
Date: 15/03/2023
Contribute to the implementation of the MFF 2021-27 and the Long-term vision for rural areas 2040 (LTVRA)
Influence the Commission's evaluation of the LTVRA
Influence the preparation of the MFF post-2027
From the European Commission's follow-up report:
In the context of the next MFF preparatory discussions and drawing on the positive experience of such earmarking in the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD), the Commission will consider the proposal on earmarking for CLLD under the relevant funds with regard to the afferent costs and benefits, also taking into account the lessons from the recent crisis, which demonstrated the need for higher flexibility and adaptability of the policies, together with complexity in the management of EU funds.

With regard to indicators, the Commission agrees on the need to achieve concrete results from the rural action plan... The Commission is open to consider how to apply such indicators and targets to rural areas.Under Horizon Europe Cluster 6 ‘Food, Bioeconomy, natural Resources, Agriculture and Environment’, the Commission is funding two projects (GRANULAR19 and RUSTIK20) for a total of € 15 million, to identify qualitative and quantitative indicators that can better grasp rural diversity and provide knowledge to develop policies tailored to the various rural contexts.
Under Horizon Europe Cluster 2 ‘Culture, Creativity and Inclusive Society’, it funds three projects (MOBI-TWIN21, PREMIUM_EU22 and Re-Place) to create new indicators and methods to analyse the state and dynamics of development in rural areas.

The Commission proposal for a Council Recommendation on the key enabling factors for successful digital education and training, adopted on 18 April 2023, calls on Member States to ensure universal access to inclusive and highquality digital education and training, including by closing territorial gaps in accessibility and connectivity, in line with the Union-level targets for the Digital Decade Policy Programme.

To safeguard the health of the EU population,including the rural population, the Commission continues to work towards building a strong European Health Union and published the Communication ‘A comprehensive approach to mental health’ on 6 June 2023.

The Commission agrees on the importance of accelerating the new European Bauhaus in rural areas and commits to explore all the possibilities for improvement in the future, as mentioned in the EU Rural Action Plan.

The Commission has also set up a Thematic Group on forest-dominant rural areas and municipalities to explore the needs of forestdominant areas and municipalities and lay the groundwork for a network, as committed in the EU forestry strategy and in the LTVRA

The Commission agrees that synergies and coordination between EU funding instruments to finance activities in rural areas should be further improved. Consideration will be given to all options aimed at improving the synergies, coordination and simplification, including through the ʻlead fund’ approach, between EU funding instruments for rural areas in the context of the post 2027 multiannual financial framework (MFF). Allocation methodology and criteria will be set up, for the EU funding instruments in the next MFF, to echo the corresponding priorities and challenges.

The Council Conclusions (November 2023) contain several proposals from the CoR opinion and the follow-up work done since its adoption, including the Logrono Declaration of the CoR Bureau of 31 October 2023.

- reiterates its support for the Long-term vision for the EU's rural areas 2040 (LTVRA), which will support territorial cohesion and create new opportunities to attract innovative businesses, ensure access to quality jobs, promote new and better skills, ensure better infrastructure and services and strengthen the role of sustainable agriculture and diversified economic activities;

- insists that all EU policies should promote the attractiveness of these areas and protect their quality of life and the rural population by ensuring equal access to basic services and opportunities;

- points out that the magnitude of the challenges requires a strong concentration of financial resources and all activities in rural areas; considers it necessary to connect development tools, reduce their fragmentation, strengthen synergies between LEADER/CLLD, smart villages initiatives and LAGs;

- invites the EU institutions, Member States and regions to harness the full potential of the smart village concept as a new, innovative tool for the European policy and for the development of rural areas;

- calls for better conditions to be created for the development of diversified small and medium-sized businesses and for start-ups to become a natural part of the development of smart municipalities in rural areas;

- welcomes the inclusion of rural areas in the European Declaration on Digital Rights and Principles for the Digital Decade;

- calls for post-2027 Cohesion Policy to include specific EU-level regional targeting and earmarking for rural areas, with a minimum aid threshold in Partnership Agreements;

- invites the Commission to include proposals for targets and indicators in its evaluation report on the implementation of the LTVRA. Invites the Commission to propose how to integrate these targets in existing EU monitoring systems (e.g. the European Semester).



Council Conclusions on the Long-term vision for rural areas

The Council Conclusions contain several proposals from the CoR opinion and the follow-up work done since its adoption, including the Logrono Declaration of the CoR Bureau of 31 October 2023.

20 Nov
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