The First Balkan Rural Parliament was held

The first Balkan rural parliament entitled "European Perspectives of Rural Communities in the Western Balkans and Turkey" was held from 26 to 28 June 2018 in Vrnjacka Banja.

Within Panel No. 1: Rural Development in the Balkans and Network Activities, panelists were: Evelina Azizaj - Albanian Network for Rural Development, Petar - Network for Rural Development of Macedonia, Afrim Sharku - Network for Rural Development of Kosovo, Ratko Bataković - Network for Rural Development of Montenegro, Duško Cvjetinović - Network for Rural Development of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ibrahim Turgul - Foundation for the Development of Turkey, Dragan Roganović - Network for Rural Development of Serbia.

The key issues of the panel that were discussed are:
1. Rural development and situation in the participating countries
2. Activities of national networks
3. Regional partnership and networking

Panel No. 2: Sectoral and cross-sectoral cooperation in rural development brought together the following panelists: Goran Šoster - PREPARE, David Lamb - ENRD, Branko Milic - NIRAS, Anna Nowak Wood - DG Agri, Bogdanka Gjorshoska - SWG, Kim Smedslund - European Rural Parliamnet , Vannes Halhead - European Rural Community / European Rural Community Alliance.

The key issues of the panel was:
1. European rural parliaments and national rural parliaments as platforms for building the future of rural communities.
2. The role of civil society networks in rural development.
3. Support to cooperation between governmental institutions and NGOs in regional rural development.

In the First Balkan Rural Parliament, the main topics were: IPARD program in the Western Balkans, the role of young people and women in rural development, social entrepreneurship in rural development, sustainable rural development through LIDER approach in the Western Balkans.

Organisation of the First Balkan Rural Parliament is one of the activities of the project "ALTER - Active Local Territories for Economic Development of Rural Areas", which is supported by the European Union.