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Where small FLAG budgets are unavoidable are there ways that the FLAGs can address the issue of critical mass?

Member States that have allocated small budgets to the FLAGs, and cannot increase them in the ways described above, can generally explore the following alternatives for reducing the negative consequences:
•    Firstly, the strategy for Axis 4 may be developed and implemented in such a way as to form part of a broader integrated strategy for the territory which is funded from a range of different sources. These funds may include a range of domestic resources, the other axes of the EFF, LEADER and the EAFRD, the ERDF and the ESF. In some cases Axis 4 may be focused on the soft measures and human resources that are used to generate the ideas and projects that can then lever in funds from outside the axis.
•    Secondly, FLAGs may seek to share the human resources, services and facilities of existing experienced local organisations (especially, but not only, LEADER groups) thereby achieving economies of scale.
Both approaches do however involve the risk that the specific value added of Axis 4 is diluted and absorbed into strategies and organisations that do not have the same level of concern for fisheries areas and communities. Member States taking this approach should demonstrate that they have established appropriate safeguards and conditions to ensure that this does not happen.