early approval of CAP Strategic Plan by European Commission, which will deliver a package of almost €10 billion to rural Ireland
approval is a key step in the delivery of the €180 million LEADER programme for 2023-2027
continuation of administration funding for Local Action Groups in 2023 confirmed
Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys, has today welcomed the announcement that the European Commission has confirmed their approval of Ireland’s CAP Strategic Plan, 2023-2027.
The CAP Strategic Plan includes the LEADER programme, which has a budget of €180 million for the years 2023 to 2027. A number of further steps will now be completed by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine in advance of bringing the Plan to Government for final approval in the coming weeks.
Minister Humphreys said:
“I would like to congratulate Minister McConalogue in securing today’s approval for the new CAP Strategic Plan which will deliver €10 billion in supports across a range of schemes. This level of investment is clear testament to this government’s commitment to families across rural Ireland. LEADER is a key part of the plan and also an important element of Our Rural Future. I have previously confirmed that €180 million will be made available for the new LEADER programme, and my focus now is to continue working with key stakeholders over the coming weeks and months to finalise the design of the new LEADER programme.
"This programme will build on the fantastic success of the LEADER programme in Ireland over the last 30 years, and I am confident that LEADER will continue to play a central role in supporting rural communities for years to come.”
Minister Humphreys continued:
“I expect to be in a position shortly to confirm details of the selection process for the new LEADER programme, which will be an important next step. I can also confirm that Exchequer administration funding will continue to be made available in 2023 to the Local Action Groups delivering the current programme, and details in this regard will be confirmed shortly.”
LEADER, a key intervention of Our Rural Future, is a rural development programme co-funded by the EU which operates a locally-led, bottom-up, approach to meeting the needs of rural communities and businesses. The programme supports private enterprises and community groups in rural areas.
The programme is based on a community-led approach to rural development and plays an important role in supporting communities and enterprises in progressing job creation, social inclusion and environmental projects at local level.
Funding is currently delivered by 29 Local Action Groups (LAGs) in 28 sub-regional areas. These groups are partnerships of public and private entities from a defined geographical area. LAGs are responsible for local projects in accordance with the Local Development Strategies they develop themselves.
€250 million has been made available for LEADER for the period 2021 to 2027. This is comprised of €70 million for the transitional period 2021 to 2022 which came into effect on 1 April 2021 and an additional €180 million from 2023 to 2027. This level of funding is evidence of the government’s continued support for the LEADER programme.