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International affairs

COSME - EU programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs)

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COSME is the EU programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) running from 2014 to 2020 with a planned budget of €2.3bn.

Article 6 of the COSME regulation stipulates the rules for third country participation in the programme. DG Enterprise and Industry is responsible for the opening up of COSME to non-EU countries. The participation is open to the following groups of countries: EFTA countries which are members of the EEA, acceding countries, candidate countries and potential candidates, European neighborhood countries and other European countries.

The procedural steps imply that the DG informs relevant countries of the programme and the modalities for accession and negotiates the required Memorandum of Understanding which, once signed by the European Commission and the country in question, regulates the rights and obligations, as well as the financial contribution, of the country to the COSME programme budget. This so-called "entry ticket" is different for each country and is calculated in proportion to the relative size of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

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