Regional Section for Rural Areas
The 2007–2010 Special Rural Policy Programme includes a regional section focusing on those rural-type areas which are not eligible for the Regional Centre Programme or Urban Programmes in the Uusimaa region, and which are not located in the capital region or the Åland Islands.
The regional section seeks to identify further areas of strategic focus in the development of rural business and the related skills base, and to create new methods and forms of partnership for regional development. This section seeks to strengthen interaction between cities and rural areas, complementing the operational models and range of tools available for rural development. Furthermore, it will help rural regions to make better use of the development funds available in the EU programmes.
The regional rural section currently applies to 20 rural regions.
For the purpose of simplifying the regional development programme system and enhancing its effectiveness the Government has decided on preparation of a new regional development programme, that will cover all the areas (except Åland islands). The new programme - COCO (cohesion and competitiveness programme) will start in January 2010. The Regional Section for Rural Areas will be merged in COCO among other regional development special programmes being implemented at present (the Regional Centre Programme (RCP), including urban centre programmes implemented in Uusimaa, and the local and regional implementation of the Island Development Programme).
More information on COCO can be found at www.tem.fi/koko (in Finnish and Swedish only).