Regional Development Disparities in Romanian Agriculture and Rural Development: A Multi-Criteria Approach

Regional Development Disparities in Romanian Agriculture and Rural Development: A Multi-Criteria Approach

Gabriel Popescu (Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies, Romania) and Simona Bara (Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies, Romania)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-1629-3.ch005
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Initially, the Romanian development regions created in 1998 had as a main objective the insurance, from the statistic point of view a relatively territorial equilibrated development; they where set up in accordance with the level NUTS-II from the EU. According to the Romanian legislation on force, the regions do not have an administrative status and they do not have legal personality. The analysis of the rural space highlights significant regional disparities, phenomena that have influence to the spending of the EU funds and their degree of absorption. This chapter proposes a method for multi-criteria analysis in order to identify the agricultural and rural territorial disparities and to establish the regional disparities in implementing the National Plan of Rural Development (NPRD) during 2007-2013. The NPRD was put under multi-criteria analysis: the main 13 measures implemented by Romania during 2007-2013 periods.
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The Romanian experience in managing the post-accession funds reflects, with acuteness, the necessity of introduce some changes regarding the methods and techniques of financial allocation/evaluation of public funds (International, Europeans and domestic ones), with the reason of reformulating and re-dimensioning some territorial decisions.

Evaluating the Romanian socio-economic development disparities, with accent on the agriculture and rural area, by multi-criteria analyze decision makers can improve the efficiency use of the public funds which will be allocated during the next periods.

The present paper has as main objectives:

  • 1.

    A short presentation of the multi-criteria analysis method adjusted to the main scope proposed;

  • 2.

    The analysis of aggregate indexes and the regional discrepancies from agriculture and rural space using the multi-criteria diagnostic method; in this context were analyzed the following issues: land resources; human resources and their quality; cultivated agricultural surface; livestock; animal production; value of agricultural production; equipments used in agriculture - tractors and other machines; harvested wood volume; regional economic strength; regional infrastructure - providing the localities with public roads, sewerage and water; the state of poverty in rural areas; existing the local managerial capacity; entrepreneurship state;

  • 3.

    The calculation of the territorial disparities related to 13 measures selected from the National Programme for Rural Development in Romania for the period 2007-2013; using the multi-criteria analysis method were calculated aggregate index and regional disparities for the following NPRD measures: Measure no.112 “Establishment of young farmers”; Measure no.121 “Modernization of agricultural holdings”; Measure no.122 “Improving the economic value of forests”; Measure no.123 “Increasing the added value to the agricultural and forestry products”; Measure no.125 “Improving and developing the infrastructure related to the development and adaptation of agriculture and forestry”; Measure no.141 “Support for semi-subsistence farms”; Measure no.142 „Starting up producer groups”; Measure no.143 “Providing services of counseling and advice for farmers”; Measure no.221 “First afforestation of agricultural land”; Measure no.431 – sub-measure 431.1 “Building public - private partnerships”; Measure no.312 “Support for the creation and development of micro-enterprises”; Measure no.313 “Encouragement of tourism activities”; Measure no.322 “Village renewal and development, improving basic services for the rural economy and rural population and enhancement of the rural heritage”;

  • 4.

    The comparative issues regarding existing socio-economic territorial development disparities from agriculture and in rural areas versus the financial allocations in the case of promoted measures developed by the NPRD during 2007-2013. It is necessary to mention that: the data and information used to assess the NPRD territorial disparities covers the implementation period of January 1st 2007 - December 31st, 2012; on used official data and information from National Institute of Statistics and Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.



Romania is an emerging country with socio-economic structures undergoing on a dynamic process of development and on adjustment to European Union structures to which it access since 2007. Romanian legislation in force concerning regions was adopted 15 years ago (Law no.151 / 1998 on Regional Development in Romania). The purpose of Law 151/ 1998 was: configuration of balanced territorial structures in terms of socio-economic development; to set-up regional structures which fulfill requirements for statistical issues and compatible with EU territorial units type NUTS 2. It should be noted that in Romania this territorial structures are the result of the freely agreement expressed amongst the county councils and local ones, so that they have only an administrative status, them are not local administrative units with legal personality. However, it appears that, in time, within Romania the Socio-Economic Development Regions are led to the emergence of some local disparities, a phenomenon with influence on both the spending of public funds (the internationals funds, including the EU funds, and domestic ones) and the level of resources absorption, all of which affect the ultimately, the living standards of the regional population.

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