The projects aimed for the rural environment can obtain funds within the National Programme for Rural Development (NPRD). Details regarding the available sums and the required conditions for funding have not yet been disclosed as negotiations with the European Commission are under way.

The first ,“crucial”, meeting with the EC representatives will take place this week in Brussesls, according to Viviana Vasile, deputy general manager with the Management Authority of NPRD.

The NPRD comprises a large variety of projects, including SAPARD-like projects, agricultural exploitations and modernizing processing units.

The entrepreneurs and, in particular, the micro enterprises active in the rural area can find the most interesting opportunities within the Axe 3 - “tourism” and “non-agricultural activities” (bakery, pastry, food processing, tailor shops, etc).

The grants of the projects amount to 50% of the total value of the project, the rest must be co-financed by the small companies applying for European funds. If the company qualifies for the “large enterprise” category, the grant will reduce to 25%.

“There is a problem regarding the large enterprises as out of the 1300 that exist in Romania only a small percent fulfill, together, the EC conditions for this category”, Vasile said.

The funding threshold, and the eligible expenses are sensitive aspects that must be agreed upon at the national level first. The NPRD is a complex one and negotiations are time consuming, but there has not yet been recorded any delay, on the contrary, there isn’t any country more advanced than Romania as far as this programme is concerned, according to Vasile.