Official details of the Gozo Action Group – GAG
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Gozo Action Group (G.A.G) Foundation is a public private partnership established in the territory of the Island of Gozo aimed at contributing to the realisation of the LEADER Project: a new approach for the Maltese Archipelago that can be implemented under the Rural Development Plan 2007 – 2013.
In order to become a LEADER area and to be able to develop important projects for the improvement of quality of life, competitiveness and sustainability, such a partnership has to be established at local level. The partnership will then be able to carry out promotional and information activities in the island, communicating to Gozitan society the main elements of this important project – thanks to the funds made available under the Rural Development Plan.
LEADER is characterised by a bottom-up approach where local operators and stakeholders have the chance to contribute actively towards the sustainable development of their rural area. The first step is the definition of a Local Development Strategy which determines the priorities and possible actions to be carried out in the territory to achieve the objectives of the LEADER project. Local operators will be actively engaged through a consultation process that will start as soon as the RDP funds will be made available.
Once the Local Development Strategy is defined, Gozo Action Group will submit a full application to the Managing Authority to be recognised as a Local Action Group and thus be able to start implementing the actions envisaged.
Gozo Action Group is the result of a process of consultation and involvement of local stakeholders that started in 2006, including several meetings with national and international experts. G.A.G. is a non-profit Foundation composed of representatives of Local Councils, NGOs, the general Business Sector, the Tourism Sector and the Agricultural Community.
All 14 Local Councils in Gozo (as the public sector) are founding members of Gozo Action Group and have appointed three mayors as their representatives on the board: Mr Paul Buttigieg (Qala), Mr David Apap (Gharb) and Mr Joseph Cordina (Xaghra). The general business sector is represented by Mr Joseph Grech (CEO Gozo Business Chamber), Mr Paul Scicluna (Chairman – Gozo Tourism Association) represents the tourism sector, Dr Joseph Grech (Director Gozitano Agri – Coop. & MIAF) represents the farming community and the NGO sector is represented by Mr Antoine Vassallo (President Gozo NGOs Association). These 7 members then chose Dr Grech as Chairman, Mr Apap Vice – Chairman, Mr Vassallo Secretary and Mr Cordina Treasurer.
On Friday, the 8th of August 2008, the Gozo Action Group Foundation was officially launched. All individuals, businesses and entities in Gozo are now invited to become members. GAG is ready to work immediately on the promotion of the LEADER approach in Gozo as well as starting the consultation process to define the Local Development Strategy.