Welcome to FARNET: the European Fisheries Areas Network

FARNET is the community of people implementing Community-Led Local Development (CLLD) under the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF). This network brings together Fisheries Local Action Groups (FLAGs), managing authorities, citizens and experts from across the EU to work on the sustainable development of fisheries and coastal areas.

Fisheries areas across the EU are facing significant challenges. The continuous decline in income and employment in the fishing sector has underlined the need for innovative responses that are both sustainable and inclusive. Community-Led Local Development (CLLD) is a tool that enables local fisheries communities to address these challenges by proposing and testing new solutions. FARNET is there to help them make it happen.

CLLD continues the area-based approach initiated by Axis 4 of EFF. CLLD under the EMFF brings additional and innovative opportunities that will enable local communities to scale up the effects of the 10000+ projects supported between 2007 and 2014. In particular, local communities will have the possibility to combine funds allocated under the EMFF with those from other European Structural and Investment Funds: the European Social Fund (ESF), the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD).


As with Axis 4, decision-making on the use of CLLD funding is delegated to local partnerships that bring together the private sector, local authorities and civil society organizations. Known as Fisheries Local Action Groups (FLAGs), these partnerships take decisions within the framework of a local strategy, developed in response to specific needs and opportunities identified locally. Funding available is targeted primarily at creating employment and new economic activity as well as improving the quality of life in areas affected by a decline in fishing activities or by other specific challenges hindering the viability of local fisheries communities.

The FARNET Support Unit (FSU) is the technical assistance team established by the European Commission to assist in the implementation of CLLD under the EMFF. It works closely with DG MARE, the Member State administrations, the national fisheries networks and with the FLAGs and others involved in the implementation of CLLD, building a “learning network” that connects the growing knowledge and experience in CLLD from across Europe. It consists of a permanent team of 10 people, based in Brussels, assisted by 18 regional experts.

What we do:
•   Build knowledge and capacity in Community-Led Local development
•   Identify and disseminate successful responses to key challenges for coastal, fisheries and aquaculture areas across Europe

•   Ensure the flow of information among stakeholders involved in Community-Led Local Development
•   Support cooperation between FLAGs and with other local development partnerships throughout Europe and beyond.

How we do it:
•    Expert advice and assistance to FLAGs and administrations
•    Events: transnational seminarsconferences
•    Publications: regular electronic FARNET Flash, a yearly FARNET Magazine, thematic and methodological guides and other technical reports
•    The FARNET website and social media

Contact the FARNET team

To contact the FSU send an email to info (at) farnet.eu or drop by at the address below.


FARNET Support Unit
Rue de la Loi 38 boîte 2
B – 1040 Bruxelles
Tel. +32 2 613 26 50

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