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"Leader" approach is the main tool of the policy of sustainable rural development. However a number of strategic and organizational problems and also certain rules for its application in the praxis need to be formulated for its effective realization in Bulgaria. The strategic frameworkfor rural areas develop¬ment of the Ruse District and the opportunities for applying the Leader approach and creation of LAGs as a tool for assuring sustainable development are pre¬sented in the article. An analysis has been made about the problems for the "Leader" approach application in Bulgaria. The basis for the analysis are the main results from the realization of the pilot project "Sustainable Rural Develop¬ment" managed by the Ministry of agriculture andforestry and UNDP, as well as good practices and problems identified. An investigation of the establishment pro¬cess and also surveying offunctional problems of LAGs in Bulgaria is made in the article. Results of a special designed questionnaire have been analysed and dis¬cussed in the paper. On that basis appropriate conclusions and reccommendations are developed and presented in the paper, which might be used in the process of establishing of LAGs in Ruse district and also in other regions in Bulgaria.


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