Operational Programme 'Vorarlberg'

Programme under Regional competitiveness and employment objective, co-funded by European Regional Development Fund (ERDF)

Austria

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The European Commission approved on May 4 2007 a regional development programme for the Austrian Bundesland of Vorarlberg for the period 2007-2013, the Operational Programme "Regional Competitiveness Vorarlberg 2007-2013". This programme involves Community support for Vorarlberg within the framework of "Regional competitiveness and employment" objective ("phasing out" regions not included). The total budget of the programme is around EUR 35.32 million and the Community assistance through the ERDF amounts to EUR 17.66 million (approximately 1.22% of the total EU money invested in Austria under Cohesion policy 2007-2013).

1. The purpose and aim of the EU investment

The overall objective of the programme is to keep Vorarlberg as an attractive region for productive and competitive enterprises that will contribute to wealth and increase in quality of life of all inhabitants of the Bundesland.

With GDP per capita at more than 134% of EU average, Vorarlberg belongs to the richer regions of the European Union with a high standard of living and quality of the environment. However, to meet the challenges of the globalising world and significant changes at the EU internal market after the 2004 eastern enlargement of the Union, well-targeted support to specific sectors is essential to maintain the momentum gained in the recent years. The programme shall promote innovation and knowledge-based economy and creation of permanent jobs, thus substantially contributing to achievement of the Lisbon strategy objectives. Reducing the gap between urban and rural areas of the Bundesland is also an important aim of the support. Gothenburg's objectives of sustainability, as well as the principle of gender mainstreaming have received a special status of horizontal priorities in the programme.

2. The expected impact of the investment

The programme will ensure creation of 450 new jobs, out of which 50 in the research & development sector, trigger a total investment of EUR 110 million (six times the Community assistance), install additional renewable energy capacity of 2 MW and decrease the greenhouse gases emissions by 400 tonnes/year.

3. Priority axes

The principal objectives of the Regional Competitiveness Vorarlberg 2007-2013 programme are: strengthening of future productivity, economic growth and increase in permanent jobs and initiating of development impulses for different sectors, especially in rural areas of Vorarlberg. The Regional Competitiveness Vorarlberg 2007-2013 programme is structured into the following priority axes:

Priority axis 1: Innovation- and knowledge-based economy

In the current period of globalisation, Vorarlberg's enterprises face a strong competition on the EU and world markets. In this context, improving innovation and promoting knowledge-based economy is of a crucial importance, as well as increasing quality and technological standards in sectors with comparative advantages. One of the key issues is a successful application of the research & development outputs in practice.

Priority axis 2: Regional growth strategy

Maintaining high living standard of the inhabitants, quality of the environment and regional accessibility of Vorarlberg is in the spotlight of the second programme priority axis. The Bundesland will be able to draw on EU funds for support of the tourism sector, which accounts for a substantial share of the economy thanks to favourable and attractive geographical location. Due to serious natural disasters in the region in recent years, protection against natural risks wins more importance on the programme level as well. Fully in line with EU and Austrian policies in the environmental sector, the programme will provide increased support for renewable energy and increasing the energy efficiency.

Priority axis 3: Technical assistance

There is also provision for technical assistance in order to implement the programme. Financial support is available covering administration, monitoring, evaluation and control.

Financial and Technical information

Operational Programme 'Vorarlberg'

Intervention Type

Operational Programme

CCI no

2007AT162PO003

Number of decision

C/2007/2055

Final approval date

04/05/2007

Breakdown of finances by priority axis

Priority Axis EU Investment National Public Contribution Total Public Contribution
Innovation- and knowledge-based economy 12 627 000 12 627 000 25 254 000
Regional growth strategy 4 433 129 4 433 129 8 866 258
Technical assistance 600 000 600 000 1 200 000
Total 17 660 129 17 660 129 35 320 258