Candidate and Potential Candidate Countries
This section provides selected information about EU candidate and potential candidate countries, from the latest accession news to the events and networking initiatives that are shaping future rural development policy.
At present there are five official candidate countries for membership of the EU: Iceland, Montenegro, The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Serbia, and Turkey; and three potential candidate countries: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo*. General information on these countries or about their accession processes to the EU, can be found on the specific section of DG ENLARGEMENT website.
Through IPARD (Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance in Rural Development) candidate and potential candidate countries are assisted in the implementation of the acquis concerning the Common Agricultural Policy and the sustainable adaptation of the agricultural sector and rural areas in the candidate country.
Click on the below buttons to access county profiles and relevant information about emerging rural networks, events and initiatives including cooperation with EU countries and other capacity building resources (more detailed information and links will appear directly beneath).
Links to detailed country information from the Europa website (DG Agriculture and Rural Development):
Rural Development Networks
Available resources and information about emerging National Rural Networks and other rural networking experiences in candidate and potential candidate countries.
- A seminar on the Establishment and Development of National Rural Networks in Candidate Countries was held in Brussels on 11 November 2010. All presentations from this seminar may be downloaded from the ENRD website.
- The union of civil associations Rural Development Network in The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia – (RDN) was established in March 2010 in Skopje, as a movement organized at national level to provide a voice for rural communities in the Republic of Macedonia. The Network is also member of ELARD
- Network to support Rural Development in Serbia
- A workshop on rural networks was organised by the European Commission on 20-22 November 2013 in Paris, France. The presentation prepared by the European Commission provides information on IPARD II and National Rural Networks in pre-accession programming [PDF ].
In addition, the below presentations provide the state–of-play of National Rural Network preparations in the IPARD beneficiary countries:
A selection of events that are helping to shape rural development policy and to promote capacity building.
- IPA CONFERENCE 2013 - Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (2014-2020)
- Workshop on LEADER in pre-and post-accession programmes
- Workshop on Rural Development measures for IPA II / IPARD 2014-2020
- Workshop on IPARD: lessons learned and prospects for the next programming period
- Multi-country workshop on IPA Rural Development (IPARD) post-2013
- Workshop on IPARD Measures - Rural Tourism
- Workshop on IPARD Programme (measures and applications)
- Regional workshop on IPARD
- Seminar on the main principles of IPARD Programming
- Seminar on Monitoring and Evaluation of IPARD Programme
- First Regional Networking Workshop for the FAO/SWG Project: ”Streamlining of agriculture and rural development policies of SEE countries for EU accession”, 15 – 16 September 2012, Vodice, Croatia
- Second Regional Networking Workshop for the FAO SWG Project: ”Streamlining of agriculture and rural development policies of SEE countries for EU accession”, 22 – 24 May 2013, Bar, Montenegro
- 1st National Networking Workshops for the FAO-SWG Project ”Streamlining of agriculture and rural development policies of SEE countries for EU accession” successfully realized in the region, 7-15 February 2013, Albania, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina
- 2nd National Networking Workshops for the FAO-SWG Project: ”Streamlining of agriculture and rural development policies of SEE countries for EU accession”, 1-7 September 2013, in Serbia, Macedonia and Kosovo*.
- Prepare Gathering 2013 [PDF ], 4-7 September 2013, in Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Agricultural Policy Forum 2013: “New Prospects for Agriculture and Rural Development in South Eastern Europe towards Sustainable Future”, 15 – 18 October 2013, Pristina, Kosovo*.
Initiatives and projects
Information on initiatives and projects that support Rural Development Policy and activities
- The Leader Initiative Serbia is the working name of EU-funded project with official title “Capacity building for the establishment and implementation of a LEADER initiative in the Republic of Serbia”. An important outcome of the project is the Handbook for LEADER Implementation which presents practical guidelines to the establishment of the LEADER approach in Serbia.
- The Regional Rural Development Standing Working Group (SWG RRD) in South Eastern Europe is an international intergovernmental organisation, consisting of governmental institutions responsible for rural development in respective countries and territories. SWG is operating at national and regional level and it is acting as independent regional agency to promote sustainable agriculture and rural development in South Eastern Europe.
- “Citizens of Europe” (“Gradjani za Europu”) is an initiative of the non-governmental organisations in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The initiative members are active in three main fields, including development of the rural areas and agriculture in BiH and are contributing to enhancement the role of civil society in the European integration process. For more information about “Citizens of Europe” visit the official website of the initiative.
Guidance and technical assistance
Selected resources and documents that provide guidance about the accession process and particularly on rural development issues.
*This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence.