FIDC is the coordinating body for the delivery of the RDS Action Plan and works in close relationship with the RDS Steering Group that is ultimately responsible for the implementation of the Strategy.
The results from the recently conducted Census show that Camp has become a more popular place to live and work, and no doubt the activities carried out as part of the RDS have contributed to this by addressing a number of rural development issues.
An initial review of the different projects under the Rural Development Strategy Action plan for 2014-2017 is provided below. The findings of this review have informed the Action Plan in place for 2017-2018.
Key Priority Area 1 – Business Growth and Development
Project 1 – Capital Development Grant Scheme – BUSINESS
Under the 2014 - 2017 Action Plan, a number of rural businesses have benefited from this scheme to support the capital costs to start-up or expand their activity.
In order to encourage more business start-up or development initiatives in Camp, efforts are being made to better link this scheme with the business support package on offer at FIDC, in particular the programme of business workshops aimed at proactively engaging with new businesses.
Project 2 – Rural Tax Reliefs
This project is complete and legislation is now in place, retrospective from January 2016, as one of a number of measures to attract new businesses in Camp.
This work has been progressed by FIG’s Policy Unit, and their commitment has been critical to the completion of the project. The promotion of these new tax incentives should continue, in particular through the Tax Office and FIDC’s Development Officers.
Key Priority Area 2 – Workforce Development
Project 3 – Training Schemes
A series of workshops have been funded and delivered all over Camp for rural businesses, in particular on the topic of first aid and customer care services, in partnership with key stakeholders like the Training Centre and the Tourist Board.
Key Priority Area 3 – Services
Project 4 – Review of Ferry and Coastal Shipping Service
This project is complete and the conclusions of the review have informed the approach for the renegotiation of the service.
The approach of convening a working group involving the Director of Central Services, the Public Works Department, the Policy Unit, the Finance Department, MLAs and FIDC has proven extremely relevant to progress this project.
FIDC has played a key role in facilitating engagement with the rural community (coordination of a user survey and facilitation of the consultants trip to Camp), as well as input from the contract holder to inform the review.
Project 5 – Review of Current Waste Management and Recycling Methods
This Scheme was developed in partnership with FIG’s Waste Management Coordinator and launched in June 2016
A number of rural businesses have benefited from this scheme to manage their scrap metal waste, reducing their negative visual impact, in particular in some key tourism locations.
It is proposed to hand-over the project to FIG’s Waste Management Coordinator for inclusion within the Islands’ Waste Management Action Plan currently under development.
Key Priority Area 4 – Infrastructure
Project 6 – Rural Enterprise Zone Improvements
The renovation of the Old Manager’s House to create office space, accommodation and community areas was approved by Executive Council in December 2015 and work is on-going.
This project is being progressed by the Director of Central Services and PWD, in close collaboration with the Fox Bay community.
Project 7 – Rural Enterprise Zone Improvements
Improvement works that have been carried out to make the REZ more appealing for prospective residents and businesses, including the improvement of the water system, fuel storage system, graveling around the jetty area, provision of accommodation for the settlement teacher etc.
This project has been progressed in collaboration with the Director of Central Services and the Fox Bay community
An energy survey has been carried out to set out the costs and expected return on investment of installing a diesel/renewable hybrid system.
Project 8 – Rural Enterprise Zone Housing
A Development Plan, providing guidance on the location and design of future development in Fox Bay East, was approved by Executive Council in April 2016 and has now been formally adopted.
Critical to the success of this piece of work was the establishment of a small working group, which included, Environmental Planning, the Director of Central Services, the Fox Bay Village Agent, the MLA portfolio holder, a representative of the Fox Bay community and FIDC.
Due to the significant emphasis placed on the REZ in the current Action Plan, a specific provision to carry on this work was made in the 2017- 18 RDS Action Plan.
Project 9 – Developing Camp Water Systems Grant Scheme
A number of rural businesses and residents have benefited from this scheme to improve their water system. Improving water systems is a critical step to facilitate the growth of rural businesses, in particular in the horticulture sector and the tourism sector where the issue of water supply is key.
Project 10 – Water Consultation Exercise
This project is complete and thirty site surveys, conducted by expert hydro-geologists, are available to residents and business owners, each of them highlighting specific recommendations for improvement.
Collaboration with the DoA has proven key to coordinate the process. Work is on-going with FLH to share their experience on UV filters.
Project 11 – Capital Development Grant Scheme – HOUSING
A number of rural businesses have benefitted from this scheme to develop housing for their new employees to support the expansion of their businesses
Project 12 – Tourism Road Signage
A Camp Tourist Map has been produced and kept up to date with several reprints. It has proven to be very useful in promoting domestic tourism in Camp.
On Tourism Road Signage, FIDC has played a key role in facilitating the coordination with PWD to cover the need for additional signs in Camp.
Project 13 – Review of Maintenance of Camp Airstrips Policy
The project is complete, with new regulation for the operation of camp airstrips now in place.
FIDC has played a key role in facilitating the joined-up working between relevant FIG Departments.
Project 14 – Review Jetties and Ramps Policy
In October 2015, Executive Council commissioned PWD to review the policy for the maintenance of Jetties and Ramps and recommended this should be carried out in parallel with the review of the ferry and coastal shipping service.
FIDC has played a key role in facilitating joined-up working between relevant FIG Departments and making sure this was progressed in parallel with the review of the ferry and coastal shipping service.
Project 15 – Quality of Life Grant Scheme
This scheme has enabled the improvement of the amenities at the Hill Cove Social Club to improve the quality of life for residents in one of the main settlements on West Falkland.
Project 16 – Power/Renewable Energy Consultation
A Rural Energy Advisor was appointed by FIDC in April 2015 with a remit to review and update the existing FIG renewable energy scheme and provide recommendations to Camp businesses and residents to improve their systems. Over the two year contract, there have been site visits to a large proportion of rural businesses and residents to provide general energy advice, mapping of natural resource data for the Falkland Islands and the production of detailed energy surveys for Businesses across the Falkland Islands.
This project has been progressed in close partnership with FIG’s Environmental Planning Department, PWD and the Policy Unit.
Project 17 – Review of Current Renewable Energy Schemes and Exploring new Energy Sources
FIG’s renewable energy schemes have been reviewed and updated schemes are available to Falkland Islands businesses and residents. Proposals for two new schemes have been put forward and approved. These will aim to provide support to expanding rural businesses needing additional generation capacity to cover their growing needs and encourage the installation of renewable heating systems.
Five ‘Rural Energy Partnership Development Projects’ have been implemented across the Falkland Islands to trial, in partnership with rural stakeholders, different innovative energy technologies and/or designs for the generation and/or usage of energy and to promote their efficiency and cost saving potential to the whole rural community.
Follow-up advice on these initiatives, and as a priority on the Rural Energy Partnership Development Projects, has been secured from the former Rural Energy Advisor on a retainer basis whilst a more sustainable approach is considered as part of the review of the EDS and RDS.
Project 18 Environmental Awareness Campaign
Two case studies have been conducted on i) the use of rotational grazing and on ii) restoration techniques using native plant tillers to experience and better understand their benefit in terms of habitat conservation and restoration and enable landowners to make informed decisions in introducing or strengthening conservation activities on their land.
This project has been conducted by Falklands Conservation in close relationship with and advisory group consisting of the Department of Agriculture, Environmental Planning and a group of rural landowners.
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