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Abstract

A macro-regional fi-compass seminar on financial instruments from the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) for the period from 2014 to 2020 was organised in Rome on 13 June 2016.

Opened by Aldo Longo, Director at the European Commission's DG Agriculture and Rural Development (DG AGRI), the seminar provided insight on how financial instruments can be effectively used to deliver the objectives of the EAFRD, notably in the field of agriculture and agribusiness.

Just like in Madrid a fortnight before, participants and managing authorities from several Member States had the opportunity to learn more about the advantages, features and suitability of EAFRD financial instruments in delivering Rural Development Programme objectives.

Presentations and discussions during the event allow experts from EAFRD managing authorities, bankers, investors and other relevant stakeholder groups to explore the value-added of financial instruments for boosting investments in agriculture, agri-food and the rural economy.

In addition to the event’s information and networking purposes, the new Methodological handbook for implementing an ex-ante assessment of agricultural financial instruments under the EAFRD was launched by fi-compass the same day.

The final agenda is available for download

Photo Library

Event Video

EAFRD financial instruments for agriculture and rural development in 2014-2020, Rome, 13 June 2016

Picture: Aldo Longo, Director, DG Agriculture and Rural Development

The advantages of financial instruments as a means for future investment in the EU agricultural sector were emphasised at a fi-compass macro-regional seminar held in Rome on 13 June. More than 130 participants from 12 Member States, including experts from managing authorities, guarantee fund managers, bankers, investors, and consultants, took part in constructive talks on financial instruments supported by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD), such as loans and guarantees, for agriculture and rural businesses.

Picture: Roberto Moncalvo, Vice President, COPA – COGECA; Luca Lazzaroli, Director General, European Investment Bank; Giuseppe Blasi, Head of Department, Ministry of Agricultural Food and Forestry Policies, Italy

Opening the event, Aldo Longo, Director at the European Commission's DG Agriculture and Rural Development (DG AGRI), told the audience, "European and world demand for quality food is increasing, so is the pressure on our farming sector to deliver. This is a new era of development, which places farmers at the crossroads for investments decisions – they have to improve their assets and performance now, to be able to respond tomorrow. And in order to do this they need to be helped by member states and through financial instruments. Achieving leverage, reducing pressure on public and EU budgets, as well as addressing farmers' needs is crucial to the success of financial instruments supported through EU rural development funds (the EAFRD). Member States with regional rural development programmes may also opt for multi-regional financial instruments operating at national level, thus benefiting from larger volumes and streamlined implementation. DG AGRI considers any programme modification introducing financial instruments as a priority." Mr Longo also announced the publication of the new Methodological handbook for implementing an ex-ante assessment of agriculture financial instruments under the EAFRD.

Dr Giuseppe Blasi, Head of the Department for European and International Policies and Rural Development at the Italian Ministry of Agriculture, explained his country’s approach towards EAFRD financial instruments. Farmers' interests in financial instruments were outlined by representatives from COPA-COGECA and Italian farm unions. The seminar participants also heard examples about rural development financial instruments from different Italian regions, as well as from Lithuania and Hungary. Experts from the European Investment Bank (EIB), the European Investment Fund and the European Commission provided further input.

Picture: Event participants


 

Underlining the importance of this event and of the targeted coaching to EAFRD managing authorities offered by fi-compass, EIB Director General Luca Lazzaroli said, "The goal of fi-compass is to offer a starting point and learning opportunities that enable managing authorities and their partners to better understand financial instruments and to guide the ground work. These types of assistance from the EIB Group can help managing authorities make informed decisions about moving forward with financial instruments.”

The seminar in Rome followed similar events in the past 12 months which took place in Dublin, Vienna, Riga and Madrid. The next fi-compass EAFRD events are being planned for autumn 2016, including the EAFRD conference on 25 November 2016 in Brussels.

EAFRD financial instruments for agriculture and rural development in 2014-2020, Rome, 13 June 2016

Title Speakers
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Introductory statements

Aldo Longo, Director, DG Agriculture and Rural Development

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Introductory statements

Giuseppe Blasi, Head of Department, Ministry of Agricultural Food and Forestry Policies, Italy

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Introductory statements

Luca Lazzaroli, Director General, European Investment Bank

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Introductory statements

Roberto Moncalvo, Vice President, COPA – COGECA

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Q&A Session

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Memorandum of Understanding on raising investment and employment in agriculture in Italy

Stefano Cocchieri, Head of Capital Optimization Department, UniCredit S.p.A, Italy

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Current needs and future prospects of Italian agriculture

Roberto Grassa, Director General – Conseiller délégué CreditAgri Italia (Coldiretti)

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Current needs and future prospects of Italian agriculture

Dino Scanavino, Coordinator of Agrinsieme, Italy

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EAFRD support for financial instruments – state of play

Guido Castellano, DG Agriculture and Rural Development, European Commission

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Q&A Session

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Cases from the ground from managing authorities in Italy and other member states, as well as from other ESI funds

Carmelo Salvino, Fincalabra S.p.A.

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Q&A Session

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Cases from the ground from managing authorities in Italy and other member states, as well as from other ESI funds

Claudio Maviglia, Head of Projects & Product Development Department, Finlombarda S.p.A

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Q&A Session

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Cases from the ground from managing authorities in Italy and other member states, as well as from other ESI funds

Györgyi Nyikos, Hungarian Development Bank

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Q&A Session

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Ex-ante assessment methodology for financial instruments supporting agriculture

Bernd Schuh, Austrian Institute for Regional Studies and Spatial Planning

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Q&A Session

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Introduction to role of the European Investment Fund

Alessandro Tappi, Director, European Investment Fund

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Role of European Investment Bank Group in supporting EAFRD financial instruments

Andrea Bua, European Investment Bank

Alessandro Gargani, Business Development and Mandate Manager, European Investment Fund

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Q&A Session

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Access to finance, financial instruments and private investors

Raffaele Borriello, ISMEA, Italy

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Access to finance, financial instruments and private investors

Inga Balžekaitė, Agricultural Credit Guarantee Fund, Lithuania

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Q&A Session

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Access to finance, financial instruments and private investors (ctd)

Andrea Limone, PerMicro Spa, Italy

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Access to finance, financial instruments and private investors (ctd)

Francesca Natali, META Group & Business Angels

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Q&A Session

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Advisory support for EAFRD managing authorities on financial instruments

Bruno Robino, European Investment Bank

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Advisory support for EAFRD managing authorities on financial instruments

Nivelin Noev, DG Agriculture and Rural Development, European Commission

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Closing remarks

Guido Castellano, Deputy Head of Unit, DG Agriculture and Rural Development, European Commission