Program results and impacts

Who benefits from the Rural Development Programme and how?
The Rural Development Programme benefits farmers, enterprises and residents in rural areas as well as the environment as a whole. The network of operators working within the scope of the programme also includes various educational institutions, development organisations, municipalities and local Leader action groups.
Agricultural entrepreneurs
Funding under the programme is allocated to agricultural entrepreneurs as compensation for farming in Finland’s northern conditions and for environmental work in agriculture. Environmental compensation provides significant opportunities for promoting environmental issues not only on farms but also in a wider context. The programme includes the provision of advice and training that contributes to increased understanding regarding energy efficiency, environmental issues and animal welfare. Farms may also receive subsidies for various investments aimed at increasing their competitiveness and enhancing the environmentally friendly aspect of their operations.
Enterprises in rural areas
Small and medium-sized enterprises in rural areas play an important role in providing employment, with the Rural Development Programme aiding them in starting, diversifying and growing their business operations.
Enterprises receive subsidies for various purposes including product development, marketing, testing of new concepts, globalisation and collaboration. The programme aims to create practical conditions for bioeconomy in which the process of putting research and existing knowledge to good use is of major importance.
People living in rural areas
People living in rural areas can take advantage of the programme to develop their living environment in a more attractive direction, make their area more accessible and improve its services.
The programme supports new technology and methods that can be used to develop services. Bringing enhanced broadband connections to rural areas will provide businesses operating in those areas with better opportunities and make such areas more attractive as a living environment.
Development organisations, municipalities, enterprises and people  can together draft local, regional and international projects that support the development of various sources of livelihood, skills and services. -


The Rural Development Programme for Mainland Finland will continue to develop the countryside to make it even more viral than before! (The text continues after the video.)


The vitality of the countryside is dependent on the activity of the people and the versatility of the business life and the range of services. By using funding provided by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural dvelopment as well as by the government, municipalities and private investors, the preconditions for etrepreneurship and employment have been improved, food production has been modernised and services have been developed.

Results of the programme period 2007-2013


​Target ​Results ​Further information
​Jobs ​10 580 jobs, of which 6 500 are full time jobs ​6 562 new jobs, contributing to the creation of approximately 75 000 other jobs
​Total number of approved applications for financial support for projects and businesses ​24 000 16 789
​​- of which the number of development projects is  ​5793 ​on average €102 000/project
​- of which the number of data communication projects is ​80 ​on average €330 000/project
​​- of which the number of business subsidies is ​10 916 ​on average € 13 700/enterprise
​Number of projects funded by the various Leader groups (included in the previous figure) ​7,200 ​7 471
​​- of which the number of development projects is ​4 192 ​on average €37 800/project
​​- of which the number of business subsidies is ​3 279 ​on average €10 000/project
Number of start-up support payments for young farmers ​3 100 ​2 949
​Number of young farmers receiving support ​3 700 ​3 513
​Average age of young farmers receiving support ​29 years ​29 years
​Number of applicants receiving agricultural investment subsidies ​1 600 ​1 823
​Acreage in millions of hectares of the commitment area for which natural handicap payments are paid ​2.16 ​2.14
​Number of farms receiving natural handicap payments ​53 000 ​53 100
​Number of farms receiving environment payments ​50 500 ​52 663
​Acreage in millions of hectares of the commitment area for which environment subsidies are paid ​2.16 ​2.16
​Acreage in hectares of the area for which environment subsidies are paid under specific aid contracts ​327 500 ​382 100
​Acreage of organic production in hectares (area receiving subsidies) ​200 000 ​185 037
​Number of farms receiving subsidies for the promotion of animal welfare ​7 500 ​6 196
​​- of which the number of cattle farms is ​6 000 ​5 362
​​- of which the number of pig farms is ​1 500 ​834
​Number of farms and other land users receiving non-productive investments ​600 ​338
​Nitrogen balance, kg/hectare ​46 ​48.8
​Phosphorus balance, kg/hectare ​5 ​3.9