Entrepreneurs from nine member states of the European Union, Romania included, as well as from three extra-EU countries may apply starting this autumn for funding under a 222-million-euro transnational cooperation programme for the Danube region recently approved by the European Commission.
Boosting innovation and entrepreneurship, preserving the natural and cultural assets of the Danube region, improving the connectivity and supporting the shift towards a low-carbon economy will form the key focus of the new “Danube Transnational Cooperation Programme” adopted today, the European Commission reported in a press statement on Friday.
Corina Cretu, European Commissioner for Regional Policy said: ‘I am delighted to adopt this programme today. The programme has been designed to directly contribute to the successful implementation of the EU Strategy for the Danube Region through its thematic priorities and its support to the Strategy’s governance. It should help the countries involved to develop projects with tangible and positive impact, which will enable them to remain attractive places to live, study, work, visit and invest in.’
The programme will support transnational cooperation projects in line with the priorities of the European Union Strategy for the Danube Region (EUSDR). Its geographical focus is identical to the area covered by the Strategy, involving regions of 9 EU countries (Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Germany, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia) and 3 non EU countries (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Montenegro). Moldova and Ukraine will also be eligible under the programme once the funding from the European Neighbourhood Instrument (ENI) is settled.
The EU will invest more than 202 million euros from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and 19.8 million euros from the Instrument for Pre-Accession (IPA) for transnational projects in the Danube basin territory.
The first call for proposals will be launched in the autumn of 2015. The kick-off event will take place on 23 and 24 September in Budapest.