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Poland

Operational Programme 'Opolskie'

Convergence objective, co-funded by European Regional Development Fund (ERDF)

On 1st October 2007, the European Commission approved the regional development programme in the Opolskie region in Poland for the period 2007-2013, entitled the "Regional Operational Programme for Opolskie Voivodship for the years 2007–2013". This programme involves Community support for Opolskie within the framework of the "Convergence" objective. The total budget of the programme is EUR 502 523 310 and the Community investment through the ERDF amounts to EUR 427 144 813 (approximately 0.6 % of the total EU money to be spent in Poland under Cohesion policy 2007-2013).

1. The purpose and aim of the EU investment

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The Opolskie Regional Operational Programme (ROP) is the region’s first ever large-scale, coordinated, multi-annual and financially stable programme of development measures. Its strategic goal is to improve the region’s competitiveness, social cohesion and accessibility and realise its unique economic and cultural potential and ensure the sustainable use of its environment. Consequently, the Opolskie ROP will become the region’s most important instrument for making structural changes happen. It will also be an important tool for the delivery of the revised Lisbon Strategy. The Lisbon objectives allocation in the Programme is 43% of its ERDF budget.

2. The expected impact of the investment

The programme will ensure the creation of around 2850 new jobs, of which half will be for women. Over 1000 small and medium enterprises (SME) will be supported in the framework of the programme (including micro-enterprises) and 200 will receive support in the framework of innovation and new technology incubation. Around 280 000 persons will receive access to broadband internet and more than 11 000 people will benefit from connecting to sewer systems. In addition 74 km of roads will be renovated.

3. Priority axes

The programme is structured according to the following priorities:

Priority 1: Strengthening economic attractiveness of the region

Undertakings conducted within this priority will aim at increasing the competitiveness of enterprises in the field of production, services, technology and organisation. A range of actions will be carried out for the benefit of, among others, development of innovativeness of enterprises in the SME sector, investments in modern technologies, strengthening the R&D sector as the crucial factors in economic development. Intervention of the priority will also concern investment support of institutions and regional structures which will aid initiating business activity and its development. Development of and providing additional capital for credit and loan guarantees, and other public financial institutions offering repayable financial instruments will be supported for reinforcement of conducted actions. Within the priority such actions will be carried out which relate to areas of tourism, recreation and sports and they aim at increasing the standard of infrastructure and quality of offered services. Such actions will contribute to economic growth in the region and to enhancement of its attractiveness for the inhabitants and potential tourists and investors. The scope of the priority entirely follows the guidelines of the renewed Lisbon Strategy. At the same time, actionsd carried out within the framework of the priority will correspond with objectives and topic areas of the Opolskie Voivodship Regional Innovative Strategy for 2004-2013.

Priority 2: Information society

A weakness of the Opolskie Voivodeship is insufficient use of ICTs, including poor telecommunications and IT infrastructure which restricts access to modern information and communications technologies. Therefore in the face of challenges posed by the renewed Lisbon Strategy and taking into account the EU strategy for sustainable development adopted at the Göteborg summit by the European Council, a priority for the Opolskie Voivodeship and an opportunity for its development is to create technical conditions for common use of ICTs and their popularisation to build the information society in the region. Due to the fact that investments in ICTs constitute one of the most important factors of growth and productivity as well as a fundamental element of increasing competitiveness and development of the region, common use of ICTs will be promoted and at the same time the support will be provided to measures aimed at ensuring and increasing availability of these technologies. Actions taken in this field are to contribute to eliminating social differences, narrowing a digital gap and supporting territorial and social cohesion. Development of the information society through development of e-services information modules to enhance competitiveness of the voivodeship and establishing proper infrastructural facilities for ICTs will take place within this priority.

Priority 3: Transport

The region's SWOT analysis shows that it is necessary to make technical infrastructure more dynamic and to take advantage of a convenient location of the region and its demographic and social potential to a greater extent. A good competitive position of the neighbouring voivodeships as regards attractiveness combined with an unsatisfactory interest in the Opolskie Voivodeship by external investors sets up a serious barrier to development of the region. The activities carried out within this priority will be aimed at increasing transport accessibility of the region, improving safety and increasing mobility of the region’s residents with the application of environmentally-friendly solutions. Actions to be carried out will include construction of road infrastructure of regional and local importance, development of public transport system i.e. urban and railway transport. Special attention will be paid to improving accessibility of the areas important to development of the Opolskie Voivodeship (mainly areas for investments, municipal centres) to the A-4 motorway The priority objective also includes actions to eliminate barriers to free transfer between rural and urban areas.

Priority 4: Environmental protection

This priority will be aimed at improving the quality of environment through the development of public water –sewage and waste management, flood management, air protection and removable energy sources management. There will also be projects implemented aimed at the preservation of biological biodiversity, natural resources, landscape and those connected with environment monitoring. Within the priority, preference will be given to projects displaying large energy efficiency in compliance with the objectives of Poland's Energy Policy until 2025. As regards the improvement of waste and biogas management, preference will be given to projects for their usage for energy and heating purposes especially in small cogeneration units or directly for technological purposes. Air protection will cover actions designed to reduce emission of gases and dust to the air. In addition, following the Community policy directions for 2007-2013, the tasks performed within priority 4 are to increase the use of renewable energy sources as well as stimulate actions aimed at preserving biological diversity and unique in Poland natural and landscape assets of the Opolskie Voivodeship. Due to the fact that in the Opolskie Voivodeship there is a real risk of flood, the funds will also be allocated to development of flood prevention infrastructure.

Priority 5: Social infrastructure and higher education

The aim of this priority will be to increase attractiveness of the region for living and development of inhabitants through strengthening the role of education, increasing significance of culture and raising a level of health safety. Within the priority actions will be carried out related to regional educational infrastructure at the level of higher, post-secondary and post-middle-school education as well as educational institutions aiming equalisation of educational opportunities. Raising the standards of infrastructure and equipment combined with actions which adapt the educational offer and life-long learning are also meant to contribute to effective responding to economic changes in the region, including the restructuring processes. Furthermore, the improvement of the quality of educational infrastructure will be undertaken at local level, with particular attention to the demographic and economic situation in a given area. The priority will also support actions strongly related to ensuring an adequate quality of life to the region’s inhabitants which will concern protection of their health. Actions undertaken in this respect will aim primarily at raising the standards of infrastructure as well as quality and availability of provided services. In order to produce permanent competitive advantages of the region, increase its attractiveness and support its socio-economic development, the priority will provide support for actions in the field of culture as well as cultural and natural heritage. Actions conducted in this respect will focus on projects of significance minimum above the local level.

Priority 6: Mobilisation of municipal and degraded areas

Problematic areas are a sign of disproportions in development, therefore it is necessary to identify and limit them to pursue an effective development policy. In the Opolskie Voivodeship to prevent social, economic and spatial marginalisation of selected degraded areas, the supported revitalisation measures will be aimed at ensuring sustainable development and intraregional cohesion as well as improving the quality of life of the inhabitants, restoring spatial order and economic revival as well as re-establishing social ties. The role of the projects carried out will be to implement processes to make degraded areas able to function efficiently again, by changing the structure of the areas and giving them new functions, and first of all mobilisation of the space by introducing a positive value of the quality change.

Priority 7: Technical assistance

Actions carried out within the priority are to ensure growth and stability of employment as well as raise the quality of human resources involved in implementation of the Programme. Actions in this priority will be carried out at staff, organisational and technical levels. Implementation of the priority will ensure efficient implementation of the programme and it will include processes of management, control and monitoring, as well as information and publicity actions related to the Programme, taking into consideration improvement in the flow of information about support from the EU in 2007-2013. Moreover, funds allocated within the priority will be used for proper preparation of projects and popularisation of knowledge and information on the system of public procurement tenders, especially among potential beneficiaries.

4. Managing Authority

Marshal's Office of the Opolskie voivodship
ul. Piastowska 14
PL-45-082 Opole
Marshal
Józef, Sebesta
Tel.: +48 77 54 16 510
Fax.: +48 77 54 16 512
E-mail.: marszalek@umwo.opole.pl

Financial and Technical information

Title : Operational Programme 'Opolskie'

Intervention Type : Operational Programme

CCI no : 2007PL161PO012

Number of decision : C/07/4558

Final approval date : 2007-10-01

Breakdown of finances by priority axis
Priority Axis EU Investment National Public Contribution Total Public Contribution
Strengthening economic attractiveness of the region 158 043 581 27 890 044 185 933 625
Information society 25 628 689 4 522 710 30 151 399
Transport 111 057 652 19 598 410 130 656 062
Environmental protection 42 714 481 7 537 849 50 252 330
Social infrastructure and higher education 42 714 481 7 537 849 50 252 330
Mobilisation of municipal and degraded areas 34 171 585 6 030 280 40 201 865
Technical assistance 12 814 344 2 261 355 15 075 699
Total 427 144 813 75 378 497 502 523 310
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