What’s happening in my country
This page contains specific information about the planning and implementation of smart villages in Latvia. The information aims to orient people on policy planning, key contacts and resources on smart villages. However, it neither aims to be fully comprehensive, nor necessarily reflects the official government or European Commission position.
Explore how smart villages are being implemented in Latvia.
Key CAP contact(s) :
Support by the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) for smart villages
- The preparation of the CAP Strategic Plan in Latvia is ongoing. The meetings of thematic groups, conferences and discussions in regions started from March 2019 to set out future priorities and confirm actions. Thematic working groups are taking place in the following areas: cooperation; organic farming; generation renewal; rural areas; investments; forestry; food quality and animal welfare; direct payments; eco-schemes and agri-environment.
- During the current programming period (2014-2020), the LEADER approach is supported by 5% of the EAFRD. It is expected that this share will be increased in the next programming period (2021-2027). It is being discussed that in the future, the multi-funding approach will be continued involving EMFF.
- Smart Villages has been discussed in the framework of the thematic group on the rural areas. There won’t be a specific policy targeting Smart Village development. This is likely that in the future the CLLD/LEADER approach implemented through LAGs will support Smart Villages.
Further information on CAP & smart villages :
Activities of the National Rural Network (NRN) on smart villages
- The Latvian Rural Network supports initiatives on rural youth and lively entrepreneurship that are considered to be key for successful rural development. For a more effective implementation of the Annual Work Plan, they work with 26 regional representatives throughout Latvia.
- The NRN provides regular support to Alsunga smart village (from the year 2018) and Skaistkalne-Kurmene (from the year 2020) including knowledge, thematic activities, mentoring, consultations, researches etc. In 2021, it is planned to expand the Smart Village initiative by starting work with other villages in Latvia.
- The NRN was involved in the Thematic Group of the ENRD.
- The NRN is developing a Smart Village Network in Latvia by individual approach to develop and implement smart strategies, identifying and working with rural communities, organising workshops, thematic discussions and other activities. National discussions and seminars will also be held.
Key contact(s) :
Support provided through other national/ regional policies & initiatives
- The Regional Policy Guidelines 2021-2017, adopted by the Cabinet of Ministers Decree No 587 on 26 November 2019, set out support measures for balanced and sustainable development of regions and municipalities of Latvia. These guidelines also provide solutions for supporting the development of smart territories and smart solutions, as well as smart local governments to improve the efficiency of services. Furthermore, the guidelines support increasing public participation through community planning and participatory budgeting.
- There is no legal framework for planning at a community / village level. However, according to the statement in Regional Policy Guidelines 2021-2027, regarding the need for increasing public participation, the Guidelines for the Village Development Plan preparation are currently being developed by the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development of Latvia, which should help to define main tasks and stages of village/ community planning. These guidelines, as well as proposals for introducing participatory budgeting, have been discussed in regional workshops on the participation of local communities in the promotion of territorial development in November – December 2019.
- An administrative territorial reform has been taking place in Latvia. It was planned that after the reform there would be 42 administrative territories in Latvia instead of the current 119 administrative territories. After the reform, the importance of the development of smart territories / villages within larger administrative units is expected to increase further.