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 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.
Corina Creţu, 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 EU will invest more than €202 million from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and €19.8 million 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.
The Danube Transnational programme is built on four thematic priorities:
- An innovative and socially responsible Danube region: promotion of innovation, knowledge transfer and entrepreneurship
- An environment-friendly Danube region: preservation and management of the natural and cultural assets in the Danube region
- A better connected and energy responsible Danube region: development of sustainable and safe transport systems, promotion of energy efficiency
- A well-governed Danube region: support to the implementation of the EU Danube Strategy, and improvement of the legal and policy frameworks to tackle major societal challenges such as labour market policies, education systems, demographic change, etc.,
The Ministry for National Economy of Hungary has been appointed as Managing Authority for the Danube Transnational Programme. Activities of project partners will be co-financed by up to 85%
The European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) aims to strengthen economic and social cohesion in the European Union by reducing imbalances between its regions. The ERDF will invest more than 199 billion euro in the regions of Europe throughout 2014-2020.
The Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA) gives financial and technical help to support reforms in the accession countries. The IPA funds build up the capacities of those countries, resulting in progressive, positive developments in the region. For the period 2014-2020, IPA has a budget of some €11.7 billion.
Ministry for National Economy
Danube Transnational Programme Managing Authority and Joint Secretariat
Honved Street 13-15
Tel: +36 1 795 9193