Fisheries Areas Network

Country Factsheet

Italy - 53 FLAGs - 85.4 M€

Italian fisheries communities face several challenges, including increasing the competitiveness of small and micro enterprises; promoting employment and diversification opportunities for small-scale fishermen; ensuring balanced territorial development in fisheries areas, including facilitating recreational fishing and environmental conservation; and protecting the environment and cultural heritage. The 53 Italian FLAGs focus on the fisheries sector’s local production systems, promoting innovative fisheries products and processing, and supporting links with the agri-food sector. 

CLLD Programme

CLLD Context: 

Situated in southern Europe, in the Mediterranean basin, Italy has a population of almost 60 million people and a coastline that stretches for 9 136 kilometers.

Fisheries and aquaculture production represent around 5% of the country’s primary sector, but are more important in certain regions in the south. Sicily, for example, is the first region in terms of both the volume and the value of the catch, followed by Puglia and Veneto. Other regions with significant catch volumes include Marche, Emilia-Romagna, Lazio, Sardegna and Campania.

The implementation of the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) in Italy has led to a significant reduction in fishing capacity, with the fishing fleet declining from 14 873 vessels in 2004 to 12 414 vessels in 2015 (a reduction of 16.5%).

Small scale fisheries account for a greater number of boats, around 65% of the vessels, but trawlers (20% of the fleet in terms of number of boats) account for 50% of the fleet´s kW and more than 60% of the tonnage.

There are a total of 25 767 people employed in the fisheries sector (2015, Italian National Research Council - PNRDA), generating a total revenue of €890 million (2015), from a total catch volume of 189 tonnes.

The aquaculture sector employs a further 1 937 FTEs, and is mostly made up by small enterprises with fewer than five employees.

The processing and marketing sector is significant, employing 5 223 FTEs, with family-run businesses accounting for about 70%.

Contact details of the managing authority can be found here.

More information about national EMFF programmes can be found here.


Axis 4 achievements (2007-2013): 

In the previous programming period, Italy had a total of 43 FLAGs located in 13 of the 20 Italian regions –Friuli Venezia Giulia, Veneto, Emilia Romagna, Marche, Abruzzo, Puglia, Calabria, Campania, Lazio, Toscana, Liguria and the islands of Sardegna and Sicilia. Axis 4 projects contributed to reinforcing the competitiveness of fisheries areas by supporting the diversification of fishing and tourism activities in small fishing communities. Support was also provided for the improvement of infrastructure and services for small-scale fisheries.

CLLD objectives and challenges for 2014-2020: 

Through CLLD, the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) aims to improve living and working conditions in fisheries-dependent communities.

The main challenges to be addressed by CLLD in Italy’s fisheries areas in the coming years include:

  • Increasing the competitiveness of small and micro enterprises;
  • Promoting employment and diversification opportunities for fisherman and fisheries actors;
  • Ensuring balanced territorial development in fisheries areas, including facilitating recreational fishing and environmental conservation;
  • Protecting the environment and cultural heritage;
  • Encouraging new entrants to the fisheries sector.

To cope with these challenges, CLLD in Italy in 2014-2020 will focus on the fishery sector’s local production systems, promoting innovative fisheries products and processing, and supporting links with the agro-food sector. Examples of topics and activities are:

  • Economic and social diversification linked to changes in the fisheries sector;
  • Renewable energy sector development (production and energy savings);
  • Sustainable tourism;
  • Landscape, land use and biodiversity (plant and animal) care and protection;
  • Environmental and natural resource enhancement and management;
  • Cultural and artistic heritage linked to the territory;
  • Access to basic public services;
  • Inclusion of specific disadvantaged and marginal social groups;
  • Legal aid and social inclusion in high social exclusion areas;
  • Urban regeneration (creating services and inclusive spaces for the community);
  • Networks and smart communities.

In the current programming period, two new regions are implementing CLLD and both have selected one FLAG: Molise and Basilicata. Compared to 2007-2013, the total budget for CLLD has been increased (from €31.3M to €42.4M), and the average budget per FLAG is higher (from €1M to between €1.7M and €2.4).

Multi-fund CLLD in Italy

Puglia is the only region in which strategies will be multi-funded (EAFRD and EMFF). In the other regions, the strategies are mono-funded, although cooperation projects between LAGs and FLAGs are expected.

CLLD Budget

Total budget: 
€85 426 148
  • EMFF budget for CLLD: 
    €42 713 074
  • Co-funding: 
    €42 713 074
  • Proportion of CLLD in EMFF budget: 
Number of FLAGs: 
Average budget per FLAG: 
€1 611 814

National Network

The national network has been set up in September 2017.

The budget foreseen is almost €3M and the network will be involved in the following activities:

  • Coordination and support to regional Intermediate Bodies;
  • Coordination and support to FLAGs;
  • Identification, collection and dissemination of good practices in Italy;
  • Information dissemination;
  • The exchange of experiences;
  • Developing and maintaining a projects database;
  • Creating synergies between the FLAG’s national network and the national rural network.

The beneficiaries of the national network activities are the Italian FLAGs, the regional authorities (intermediary bodies) and the national managing authority.

Click here for the National Network contact details.

The FLAGs and their areas

The regional authorities, in their role as Intermediary Bodies, are responsible for selecting FLAGs. Overall responsibility and coordination falls under the remit of the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Forestry Policies (www.politicheagricole.it)

Calls for FLAGs were launched in July 2016 in all regions, and the final approval of the first round of FLAGs was completed by the 29 October 2016.


For the EMFF funding period, 22 cooperation projects were reported by the managing authority by December 2021. Examples of projects include the development of a blockchain traceability system for small-scale fisheries, a network for marine litter management and a conservation project to safeguard protected species and fishing businesses. Other projects transferred Italy’s CLLD know-how beyond Europe, for example to Turkey in the Coop to Coast project, and to Tunisia through the Ensamble project.

For information on how cooperation was programmed and organised in Italy, click here.


Code Name Region Surface area (km²) Population Population density (per km²) Employment in fisheries*
IT-FVG-IT201 Friuli Venezia Giulia FLAG
Friuli Venezia Giulia
256 18656 73 393
IT-VEN-IT202 Venetian - VeGAL FLAG
783 159579 203 1242
IT-VEN-IT203 Chioggia and the Po Delta FLAG
619 80509 130 2825
IT-EMR-IT204 Emilia-Romagna Coast FLAG
689 187462 272 4347
IT-MAR-IT205 North Marche FLAG
The Marches
305 149891 491 916
IT-MAR-IT206 South Marche FLAG
The Marches
72 87628 1216
IT-MAR-IT207 Central Marche FLAG
The Marches
273 198478 726 708
IT-ABR-IT208 Pescara Coast FLAG
34 121014 3522 285
IT-ABR-IT209 Blue Coast FLAG
186 120045 67 1600
IT-MOL-IT210 Molise Coast FLAG 216 50148 232 420
IT-SAR-IT233 East Sardinia FLAG
1485 82170 55 764
IT-TOS-IT223 Etruscan coast FLAG
1479 143700 97 505
IT-BAS-IT211 Coast to Coast FLAG
1694 113331 67 42
IT-CAL-IT212 Pearl of the Tyrrhenian Sea FLAG
564 105411 187 183
IT-CAL-IT213 The marine villages of Ionian Sea FLAG
860 157096 183 463
IT-CAM-IT214 Landing of Ulysses FLAG
161 197082 1219 206
IT-CAM-IT215 Cilento Blue Sea FLAG 167 41847 250 200
IT-CAM-IT216 Ischia and Procida Islands FLAG
51 74561 1467 249
IT-CAM-IT217 Flegrea FLAG 60 119980 2000 266
IT-CAM-IT218 Ports of Velia FLAG 295 38202 130 98
IT-CAM-IT219 Golden Mile Coast FLAG
59 193356 4673 1130
IT-LAZ-IT220 Bolsena Lake FLAG 334 26097 78 116
IT-LAZ-IT221 Tirreno Pontino FLAG
IT-TOS-IT222 Silver Coast FLAG
499 33000 67 360
IT-TOS-IT223 Etruscan coast FLAG
1479 143700 97 505
IT-LIG-IT224 East Liguria FLAG
239 165012 691
IT-LIG-IT225 Savonese FLAG
331 189102 571 516
IT-SIC-IT226 Trapanese FLAG 443 199541 451 1797
IT-SIC-IT227 Due mari FLAG 1256 194781 155 525
IT-SIC-IT228 Castellamare and Carini gulfs FLAG 412 160600 390 364
IT-SIC-IT229 Sicily Islands FLAG
249 27189 109 280
IT-SIC-IT230 Sun and Blue FLAG 868 148794 171 1850
IT-SIC-IT231 Etnea Coast FLAG
IT-SAR-IT232 North Sardinia FLAG
1947 124275 87 833
IT-SAR-IT234 West-Central Sardinia FLAG
1249 96907 98 931
IT-SAR-IT235 West-South Sardinia FLAG
1158 84563 73 591
IT-LAZ-IT236 North Lazio FLAG
IT-LAZ-IT237 Central Lazio Sea FLAG
IT-TOS-IT238 Northern Tyrrhenian Sea FLAG
1279 148401 108 372
IT-CAL-IT240 Stretto FLAG 149 84912 571 412
IT-CAL-IT241 Ionian 2 FLAG
510 167230 328 489
IT-ABR-IT242 Trabocchi coast FLAG 330 133343 409 282
IT-PUG-IT243 Gargano multifund LAG
1916 131282 69 398
IT-PUG-IT244 Daunofantino multifund LAG 771 196591 255 1071
IT-PUG-IT245 Ponte Lama multifund LAG
232 171796 788 587
IT-PUG-IT246 South East Bari multifund LAG
114 43825 384 144
IT-PUG-IT247 Trulli and Barsento multifund LAG
15789 49246 312 174
IT-PUG-IT248 Itria Valley multifund LAG
132 39913 303 105
IT-PUG-IT249 Alto Salento 2020 multifund LAG 665 136235 187 21
IT-PUG-IT250 Porta a Levante multifund LAG 289 36199 125
IT-PUG-IT251 Terra d'Arneo multifund LAG
672 169853 253 297
IT-LIG-IT252 Il Mare delle Alpi FLAG
850 136099 160 211
(*)according to the information received from the FLAG


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