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Structural support and aids

Support to the fisheries sector encompasses the structural measures, state aids and price-based mechanisms. Furthermore, support to the sector is available through pre-accession mechanisms (SAPARD, IPA-RD). Upon accession of Republic of Croatia to the EU, pre-accession funds shall be replaced by structural funds – European Fisheries Fund – within which funds are available for targeted support through financing and co-financing of projects in the fisheries sector.
Structural measures and mechanisms were set up in 2010 and include a range of different measures. In accordance with the national legal framework, as well as with the EU acquis, structural measures are grouped within five priority axes. These are: adjustment of the fleet; development of aquaculture, inland fisheries, processing and marketing of fisheries products; projects of common interest; sustainable development of fisheries dependant areas and technical assistance. Each of these priority axes includes a number of measures, aiming at securing a long term sustainability and economic viability of the sector
In order to use the funds available under the European Fisheries Fund, Republic of Croatia needs to adopt two documents which require confirmation by the European Commission. These are the National Strategic Plan and the Operational Program for European Fisheries Fund. These documents need to contain goals and measures, as well as sources of funding and envisaged financial envelopes. Both documents are currently in preparation, and on these pages you will be able to follow the consultation process and overall progress in drafting of these documents.
European Fisheries Fund is an instrument which allows financing of a wide range of measures, starting from permanent or temporary cessation of fishing activities, to the compensation for the loss of fishing possibilities, to construction of new processing plants, increase of product quality, equipping of ports and landing places and the like. A very important priority axes is the one aimed at sustainable development of the fisheries dependant areas. This group of measures relies on local initiatives, and implies creation of fisheries local action groups. More about this priority axis you may find at the web-page of FARNET.
In addition to the structural mechanisms, the aids in the fisheries sector are possible in the status of the state aids. Such aids need to be in line with the guidelines on assessment of state aids in fisheries, and may be awarded as individual aids or as measures. State aids may be awarded by central or local government. The assessment of state aids in some cases is undertaken by the MAFRD and - upon accession of Republic of Croatia to the EU - by EC in others. On this web-site you will be able to find all information related to state aids in fisheries.
Further to the aids listed above, the fisheries sector may benefit from the de minimis aids. The way these aids will be awarded is governed by the acquis and upon accession of the Republic of Croatia to the EU they shall be awarded in line with this regulation.