New application opportunities for young farmers and agricultural professionals returning from abroad

The Agency for Funding Rural Investment (AFIR) has launched a new application scheme for young farmers and agricultural professionals returning from abroad to start their own agricultural business from the beginning of January 2021.

The tender itself aims to help them move home and thrive at home. Young people returning from abroad may be farmers under the age of 41 by the date of submission of the application The maximum aid value may be EUR 40,000 or EUR 50,000, depending on the category of the economic size coefficient (SO):

— EUR 40,000 (points 12.000 and 29.999 SO)

— EUR 50,000 (points 29.999 and 50.000 SO)

The 100 % non-repayable grant is for young people who:

have worked for at least 3 months without interruption in an agricultural, agri-food, veterinary or agri-economic job abroad in the last 2 years, or

— post-university studies abroad in agricultural, agri-food, animal health, or agri-economic fields in the last 5 years;

Successful applicants will receive 75 % of the grant at the time of conclusion of the contract and the remaining 25 % within the most three years after receipt.

Of the applications submitted between 4 January and 4 February 2021, only those with a score of 70 or more will be assessed. In the case of applications submitted between 5 February and 4 March, the quality threshold required of applicants was set at 55 points and 40 points during the one month starting on 5 March. At the same time, during the last period between 5 April and 4 May, the score limit will be further reduced: incoming applications can now receive funding with a minimum of 25 points.

The Ministry of Agriculture has already tried to attract young people working in agriculture abroad. However, last year’s announcement fell into a spectacular disinterest: very few young farmers returning from the diaspora — only two at the national level — took advantage of the opportunity. This is why AFIR has facilitated the conditions for this year’s call for proposals.

What can be accomplished from the application?

  • Modernisation of the economy (purchase of machinery, equipment, irrigation equipment, etc.)
  • Takeover of many farms with low economic value
  • Development of a self-sufficient economy (SO point increase)
  • Raising the level of agricultural qualifications
  • Adapting to quality and environmental standards

Necessary conditions:

  • They should be included in the category of micro and small enterprises;
  • Owner of a farm whose economic size is between 12 000 and 50 000 SO;
  • Have adequate professional skills and competencies and present a business plan;
  • Resides in the same territorial administrative area where the holding is registered;
  • You must have a workplace sign in the same territorial administrative area, or it has to be located in the adjacent area where the farm is registered.
  • The beneficiary must have their seat in the same territorial administrative area where the holding is registered.

Between 4 January and 4 May, the applicants will receive electronically submitted funding requests supported by a business plan.

For more information please download the Romanian guide HERE.



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