The Tzoumerka is a mountainous area in Northwestern Greece that presents considerable development challenges with respect to economic growth, social cohesion and governance. The area is highly dependent on traditional agricultural activities that are only made viable by considerable Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) support. Unfortunately, this support will almost inevitably decline. As incentives to modernise agricultural activities and promote other business activity have been ineffective, local development policy will need to go farther. It must direct the local population away from old survival habits to investing in capabilities required of new economic projects. The policy instruments that are likely to be most effective in creating a new mindset will consist in identifying and incubating a small number of successful initiatives with strong demonstration effects. Strategies identified include processing raw agricultural products into premium foodstuffs, to appeal to contemporary demand trends, and harnessing the valuable tourism resources of the area in order to attract visitors who increasingly seek out authenticity in their tourism experiences.
The Territorial Review of Tzoumerka is integrated in a wider programme of National and Regional Territorial Reviews undertaken by the OECD Territorial Development Policy Committee. The overall aim of the Territorial Reviews is to provide practical policy advice to governments. Territorial reviews focus on three types of regions (urban, intermediate and rural). They contribute to a wider understanding of the challenges these regions face and their options for practical solutions.