The Chania FLAG covers the western chunk of the Island of Crete, the largest and most populous of the Greek islands. The fisheries sector is strong here as evidenced by the location of several fisheries ports and processing units in the area. Furthermore, the Hellenic Centre for Marine Research has plans to develop an aquaculture pilot plant for research purposes here.
Environmental protection is a challenge, particularly given the impact of tourism on the island. The whole island has been impacted by the continuing economic crisis. There is also a need for investment in the fisheries sector.
The area has eight Natura 2000 areas network covering approximately 60% out of the total intervention area. The main protected areas include Lefka Ori, the Islands of Gavdos and Gavdopoula, Sougia Bay and the Lissos Gorge.
The FLAG strategy will focus on improving the local fishing sector’s competitiveness by supporting investments that contribute to increasing of fisheries income.
Furthermore, the strategy aims to improve competitiveness through the enhancement of infrastructure, which supports the fishing sector and maximises contributions to the local economy as well as infrastructure that could enrich the tourist sector by taking advantage of the local cultural heritage and way of life.
The FLAG is also a LAG for the new programming period (2014- 2020). The approved multi funding CLLD programme is €7 150 000 (€1 550 000 from the EMFF and €5 600 000 EAFRD).
This is a new FLAG and therefore lacks experience in the area of cooperation. However, the FLAG is highly experienced in local development programs for rural areas, in water management, renewable energy, road network projects etc and is enthusiastic to share its experience via cooperation programmes in this area.
Cooperation project envisaged:
The project of “Marine environment, coastal threats and fishing” regards to an interregional cooperation between all the FLAGs in Greece, and the Heraklion Development Agency S.A. as coordinator partner. The main objective of the project is to identify, map and prioritise the risks facing the Greek seas as related to fisheries.
FLAG members include ten local associations of agricultural cooperatives, the region of Crete, the regional association of municipalities of Crete and the Greek public administration. The fisheries sector is represented by the fishing office of the Department of Agricultural as well as by the association of owners and employees of coastal fishermen of the municipality of Chania.