The FLAG area is located in the metropolitan area of Riga, the capital of Latvia. It includes two municipalities, Carnikava and Saulkrasti. The area has a 35 km coastline along the Gulf of Riga and is renowned for its rich biodiversity and the landscape of the “Piejūra” Nature Park.
This combination of elements provides considerable potential for the development of tourism and other related businesses. The FLAG area already has a high level of economic activity, with 147 businesses per 1000 inhabitants, and this number is growing rapidly. The area’s 3.6% unemployment rate is one of the lowest in Latvia (10.8% national unemployment rate).
The main challenges facing the FLAG are population growth and the need to keep a balance between the development of economic and social activities and access to services. As identified in the CLLD strategy, there are currently insufficient premises available for new businesses, and a limited number of skilled jobs. The area also lacks suitable outlets for the sale of fish products.
The Piejūra Nature Park (Natura 2000 area).
The FLAG strategy aims to support new local business and the development of local infrastructure.
In particular, it focuses on four main areas:
EAFRD – €382 098.29 including national co-financing of 68%.
The development and implementation of education and training programmes for the fisheries sector.
Tourism development, in collaboration with the tourism cluster, "Saviļņojošā Vidzeme". This includes the development of a cycling route along the Baltic Sea coast.
A business start-up support programme, including the creation of office space for young entrepreneurs.
The CLLD strategy includes three strands that are co-financed by the EMFF.
Two of the strands are organised based on calls for proposals with set deadlines. These calls are launched at least once a year. The deadline for the first call closed on the 11th of May 2016.
The call for projects for the third strand is open continuously.
The FLAG will focus on cooperation projects related to tourism development activities and the strengthening of the fisheries sector.
The FLAG board (decision-making body) consists of twelve members, but all forty-five members of the FLAG are actively involved.
There are two representatives of the public sector (municipalities) and ten representatives of the private and NGO sector.
The private sector is represented by four fishermen and four rural business representatives (agricultural and tourism sector).
The board also includes two NGO representatives for youth, sports and culture, and women's interests' associations.