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FLAG factsheet - Greece - Dodecanese

Offical name: 
South Aegean
Kalymnos of Dodecanese
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Description of the area and its main challenges

The area comprises the island of Kalimnos and its nearby smaller islands: Pserimos (130 inhabitants), Telendos (54 inhabitants), Kalolimnos (20 inhabitants) and Plati (2 inhabitants). The island nature of the FLAG territory and its consequent isolation from the mainland and from the island of Rhodes represent a key challenge for the area. The unemployment rate is also very high compared to the county’s average. This high unemployment and the current decline of the fisheries sector are major problems faced in the area and have forced a significant part of the local population to emigrate. 

Besides tourism and fishing, other industries existing in the area are construction, aquaculture and sponge harvesting and treatment. In the last 5 years small steps have been taken to promote climbing and diving tourism.

Population: 16 441                                                         Employment in fisheries: 482 (10.36%)

Surface area/km²: 134 544                                           Coastal or inland:  Coastal (Islands)

Population Density/ Inhabitants/ km²: 122         Protected areas: Two Natura 2000 areas (5.37% of the territory): small islands of Epano, Nera, Sari, Telendos and the area of Kalolimnos, Imia.

Main focus of FLAG strategy

The FLAG strategy seeks to make Kalimnos an ideal place for living and working. More precisely, it aims to strengthen the local economy by developing new activities and linking the current areas of production. Priority will be given to the creation of new jobs, the enhancement of the quality of life and the promotion of cooperation between all local stakeholders. The strategy aims to preserve both the local architecture and the natural sites of the area while combining this with new technologies in order to attract tourism, in particular alternative tourism such as climbing, diving and pesca-tourism.

Environmental Management (1-5, where 5 is high priority and 1 is low priority): 4
Improving the competitiveness of the fisheries sector (1-5): 3
Diversification into other activities (1-5): 3
Other: Entrepreneurship (1-5): 4

Project examples and ideas

- Labelling and promotion activities of the local sponge production, which is a product strongly linked to the culture and life of the people of Kalymnos.
- Actions to promote enterprises in fishing, diving and climbing tourism.
- Actions to promote the local gastronomy based on local fisheries products.


Partnership - Lead partner or Responsible Legal Entity: Development Agency of Dodecanese (AN.DO.) SA

Other key actors/organisations in the partnership: Provincial Administration of Dodecanese, the “Union of the municipalities” (which includes Rhodes, Kos, Simi, Patmos, Tilos, Kasos, Astypalaia, Karpathos, Leipsoi, Halki and Agathonisi), Chamber of Commerce and Tourism of Dodecanese, Geotechnical Chamber of Greece (department for the Aegean Sea), Dodecanese Union of the Agricultural Cooperatives and Environmental Association of Rhodes. Federation of farmers and fishermen associations of the islands near the borders in the region of Southern Aegean. Offshore fishing association of Kaymnos “Panagia Ipapanti”.  

Links with LEADER: ANDO also manages a Leader programme. The two programmes i.e. the Leader programme and EFF Axis 4 complement each other. The FLAG area used to be part of a LEADER area from 1997 – 2006 (LEADER II and LEADER+). There is a special committee in charge of selecting Axis 4 projects.  

% of public actors: 43     

% of fisheries actors: 26      

% of other (non-fisheries) private / NGO sector actors: 26

% of environmental actors: 0

Number of individuals/organisations in partnership: 18 (i.e. the shareholders of ANDO SA)

Number of individuals on main decision-making body: 7

Number of contracted staff in FLAG: 5 FTE


Total public funding 2007-2013:                   € 4 840 000

EFF:                                                                € 3 484 800

Other public (national/ regional/ provincial):      € 1 355 200

Private:                                                           € 1 820 151

FLAG Manager: 
Kostas Zifos
Other contact: 
President: Manolis Savvis
72, 28th October street. 85100. Rodos, Greece
ando (at) / zifos (at)
+30 22410 34960
+30 22410 75324
Languages spoken: 
English, Greek, Italian