Private promoters can now receive LEADER funding of up to 75% for projects in rural areas. This increase from 50% to 75% represents a fantastic opportunity for individuals and groups to get businesses off the ground in Co. Louth. For every euro the promoter invests in a new business or project, Louth LEADER Partnership can give three euro in grant aid, providing the project or business qualifies for support. This increase was announced on 25 April 2012, with immediate effect.
This change to the LEADER funding rules will help offset some of the problems entrepreneurs have experienced in accessing credit in the current economic climate. Now that promoters only have to provide 25% in matching funds, more people will be able to draw down grant aid and more jobs will be created in Co Louth.
Cllr Colm Markey, Chairman of Louth LEADER Partnership welcomed the increased funding. “This is a fantastic opportunity for anyone who is interested in starting a business in Co Louth. Seventy five percent funding is a terrific incentive to get a new business going and to create employment. It is a very long time since 75% grant aid has been available to private individuals in Co Louth. Anyone who has a project in mind, particularly in the business creation or tourism sector, should contact Louth LEADER Partnership without delay. We will be delighted to guide you through the application process and help you get your ideas off the ground.”
John Butler, CEO of Louth LEADER Partnership believes the increased funding is exactly the incentive small businesses in Co Louth need. “Project promoters and entrepreneurs have the ideas, the initiative and the energy to create viable businesses and new jobs in rural Ireland but they are finding it difficult to get financing from the banks. By reducing the matching funds requirement from 50% to 25%, LEADER will help stimulate the local economy and create jobs in Co Louth.”
In addition, a further €10 million has been reallocated within the existing structures of the Rural Development Programme and will be put towards basic services in communities.
Mary O’Neill, Rural Development Programme Team Leader, Louth LEADER Partnership.
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