Local financing in rural areas
[ Summary ]
Challenges for the future
What are the next local financing challenges that LEADER must face?
In order to answer this question we must first ascertain:
- which avenues have already been fully explored that provide a
sound basis on which to build;
- which are the forms of financing where interventions have, by
contrast, remained sporadic and still require a great deal of
methodological capitalization and transfers of experience;
- which financing formulas of importance to rural development
have not yet received LEADER support and for which work must start
By referring to our summary table on the potential links between
funding supply and demand, presented at the end of
we can - in the light of
Chapter 3 -
briefly outline the various forms
of LEADER financial intervention.
Overview of LEADER’s fields of financial intervention
- In bold characters: major LEADER intervention - Significant and
consolidated methodological experience acquired
- In italics: ad hoc LEADER intervention - Need for methodological
capitalization and transfers.
underlined: with LEADER funds;
not underlined: without LEADER funds.
- In normal characters: no LEADER intervention
There are of course financing formulas, which, by their very
nature, escape LEADER’s field of intervention. This is the case
with “major” financing. However, there are also formulas that
LEADER has not yet tried out but which can play a key role in the
local development of rural areas. This applies in particular to
ethical banks and products.
The future challenges facing LEADER therefore vary from case to
- Where interventions involving new forms of financing have
already been practised extensively and have become widespread, the
challenge is more to systematize the lessons learned and ensure
exchanges of experience in order to achieve excellence. This is the
case with “minor financing/levers”, in the form of direct
subsidies, for which considerable progress has been made and the
LEADER groups’ know-how is very advanced ;
- With regard to formulas explored by only a few LEADER groups
or by a larger number of LAGs in a superficial manner, the problem
lies in disseminating and transferring the lessons learned from
these experiences, as well as in acquiring skills and setting up
collective consultations about the potential of these new avenues
and the best methods for getting there. This particularly concerns
initiatives involving commercial banks, finance facilitation
structures like LEADERFIDI and GALCOB Initiative and structures
initiated by civil society, like FILTARN;
- finally, with regard to financing formulas that have not yet
been explored, it is of utmost importance to implement pioneering
initiatives, which could play a pilot role at European and national
However, in the latter two cases, many initiatives already exist
unrelated to LEADER, particularly in urban areas. It is therefore
becoming increasingly necessary to set up exchanges and links with
In all three scenarios, inter-territorial cooperation, either among
rural areas themselves or between rural and urban areas, is a key
element to meeting the challenges that local development financing
will pose in the future.
In view of LEADER’s varied experience of these three types of
initiative, we shall analyse the various challenges posed by each
of the three scenarios, stressing the points where further analysis
is desirable and on which future efforts could be focused.
 See for example “De la stratégie à
l’action: la sélection des projets locaux”, 1998,
LEADER European Observatory/AEIDL.