This page contains the questions addressed to the functional mailbox and the answers provided, regarding the Call for Proposals "Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage ".
It is based on the rules and conditions contained in the legal documents relating to EASME/EMFF/2015/184.108.40.206 Calls for Proposals.
1- For the Directorate-General for Culture and Education "Creative Europe" program there are national contact points. This advice during the application process. Is there this for EMFF also?
(Für das Programm der Generaldirektion Kultur und Bildung "Kreatives Europa" existieren nationale Kontaktstellen. Diese beraten bei der Antragstellung. Gibt es dies für EMFF auch?)
The European Maritime and fisheries Fund does not have any national contact point. If you have question on the Call for proposal you should directly send them to the functional mailbox: email@example.com and mention the reference number of the Call you wish to enquire about.
(Der Europäische Meeres- und Fischereifonds hat keine nationale Kontaktstelle. Wenn Sie Fragen zur Aufforderung zur Einreichung von Vorschlägen haben, sollten Sie sie direkt unter Angabe der Referenz der Aufforderung zur Einreichung an die folgende E-Mail-Adresse senden: firstname.lastname@example.org)
2- I'm writing you to have information regarding "Call for proposal: Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage". I don't understand better which is the amount for single project and how many projects will be approved.
Depending on the quality of the proposals received, the Contracting Authority expects to grant 2 to 3 projects (as indicated in the section 4 of the Call for Proposal). Within the available budget (195.000EUR), grants will be allocated to the proposals reaching the highest scores following evaluation on the basis of the award criteria stipulated in section 9 of the Call for Proposals. Note that the projects are not entirely funded by the grants but that they benefit from a maximum co-funding rate of 80% by the EU ( as stipulated in section 11.2). No specific amount per project is foreseen.
3- I contact you on behalf of the City of XXX may be interested by the above mentioned call for proposals however, we need specification about what is mean by “underwater heritage”. Does it cover also waterways (rivers) or is it restricted to ocean and seas ?
The Call “Thematic routes on cultural underwater heritage” is designed to support underwater cultural heritage that is found at sea as referred to in the Section 2.1 "General and specific objectives of the Call" : "The present Call for Proposals aims at awarding grants for two to three projects aiming at the conception, development, establishment and promotion of a tourism product in the field of underwater cultural heritage routes in European sea-basins." and in Section 2.2 of the Call: “Proposals can be based on underwater cultural heritage that can be found at sea (i.e. including scuba diving activities and other water sports) or on land (i.e. museum where the "underwater cultural heritage" is exhibited and explained to public”). Therefore it does not cover rivers or lakes.
4- I am writing to you on behalf of a non profit Organisation from Italy. We are very interested in proposing you a project for a possible funding and we would like to know whether we can propose a project dealing with lakes and rivers in XXX and XXX, to promote Cultural Tourism and exchange between the two countries. We do not know if Lakes and Rivers can be eligible, if so, can you please confirm? And we will start planning our proposal.
- See above answer to question 3 -
5 - The EU grant is limited to a maximum co-funding rate of 80%. We would like to confirm if the beneficiaries can contribute with its own personnel costs for co-financing.
The call for proposal sets a maximum co-funding rate of 80% of eligible costs for the grant. It implies that, part of the total eligible expenses entered in the estimated budget must be financed from sources other than the EU grant (see section 11.1c of the call. Therefore, beneficiaries can contribute with their own personnel costs for co-financing provided those are eligible costs and comply with the provisions of article 11.2 of the call for proposals and article II.9 of the General Conditions of the Grant Agreement.
6 - Is it there a maximum budget amount for sub-contracting?
No maximum amount for sub-contracting is set for this call for proposals. However, the use of "Implementation contracts/subcontracting" should comply with article 11.1.e of the call for proposals and with article II.10 of the General Conditions of the Grant Agreement.
7 - Can you please clarify if budget available for the above call (€195.000) is intended as total budget (max.2-3 projects approved) or it is the max. amount you will co-fund per project?
Section 4 of the call for proposal indicates the total budget earmarked for the EU co-financing of projects in the field of "Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage". The indicated amount of 195.000 euros corresponds to the total budget of the call. Within this budget, the EASME expects to fund two to three proposals.
8 - It looks like this call is only for consortiums of Public Bodies. How do we get involved as an SME?
Section 6 of the Call for Proposals establishes the conditions for eligible applicants. In this line, SMEs can participate in the proposals as applicant provided they fulfil the eligibility criteria (see section 6.2 and 6.3). Furthermore, it is obligatory that the consortium includes one SME, which is active in one of the fields indicated in section 6.3. SMEs active in other areas (e.g. in the fields of media, ICT development and others) can be involved in the project as subcontractors (see point 11.1.e) or as partners if they fulfil the eligibility requirements.
9 - We have started the underwater excavation of a sunken basilica and we want to develop a tourism project and create a tourism product regarding the basilica and its cultural heritage. In the scope of Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage project call, can we apply?
In the interest of equal treatment of applicants, the EASME cannot give a prior opinion on the eligibility of an applicant, a partner, an action or specific activities.
Eligibility checks can only be performed during the evaluation phase by the evaluation committee. Section 6 of the call for proposals define specific eligibility criteria for proposals to be submitted under the objectives defined in section 2. Please, pay particular attention to section 6.4 which details the eligibility conditions for the projects activities. In this regard, please note that it is up to the applicant to justify in its proposal how the proposed action is in line with the objectives and priorities of the call for proposals in question. Please note that the list of indicative types of activities referred to in section 6.4 is not exhaustive.
10 - Our project is exclusively centered on the heritage in one Member State and according to the Call of proposal the application must be made by a consortium of three entities from at least two countries of the EU, is this correct?
Correct. According to the Call for Proposals section 6.1 and 6.3 in particular, to be eligible for funding, the proposals must have a minimum of three organisations and must include applicants from at least 2 different eligible countries as defined in 6.1 A/, of which at least one must be an EU member state. Therefore, proposals submitted with less than two countries will not meet the minimum requirements.
11 - Our Association aims at presenting a project for the call for Proposals – EASME/EMFF/2015/220.127.116.11 Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage (deadline 15th March 2016). However, we have a doubt about the available budget. Could you please indicate us if the amount of € 195.000 refers to the maximum funding for single projects or if it is the total amount to divide for funding all the two to three proposals you expect to fund? If the amount of € 195.000 refers to the financing of a single project, could you please specify us the total amount available for financing all the projects? Thank you in advance
See answer to question 7.
12 - Is the in kind contribution eligible?
According to the art. 11,2 of the Call for proposal this contribution appear eligible;
Contributions in kind
The external co-financing may be made up of contributions in kind in order to cover other costs necessary to carry out the project. Such contributions must not exceed:
- either the costs actually borne and duly supported by accounting documents;
- or, in the absence of such documents, the costs generally accepted on the market in question.
In-kind contributions shall be presented separately in the estimated budget to reflect the total resources allocated to the action. Their unit value is evaluated in the provisional budget and shall not be subject to subsequent changes. However, we can find the contribution in kind also in the list of Ineligible Costs in pag. 22.
As defined in the section 11.1 under the co-financing principle, the resources which are necessary to carry out the action shall not be provided entirely by the Union contribution. Co-financing from the beneficiary side may also take the form of in-kind contributions from third parties as defined in art. 11.1.c. However, the corresponding costs of "in kind contributions" are not eligible costs.
But as you indicated and defined in section 11.2, In-kind contributions shall be presented separately in the estimated budget to reflect the total resources allocated to the action
13 - With regards to the EASME Call "Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage", could you please clarify whether the sum of 195 000 euros is the total eligible budget for each project to be selected or for the whole programme, i.e. for the 2-3 projects to be admitted.
See answer to question 7. Thank you.
14 - We are preparing a proposal to be submitted to the call “Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage” and we would like to make sure if Tunisia is an eligible country for this call.
In the Call for Proposals it is said that applicants must be established in:
a) an EU Member state or
b) a non-EU country participating in the EU macro-regional strategies or sea-basin strategies
We understand that Tunisia is part of the Mediterranean sea basin strategy, but we would like to have a formal confirmation before contacting the potential partner there. Sea basin strategy for the Mediterranean: http://ec.europa.eu/maritimeaffairs/policy/sea_basins/mediterranean_sea/index_en.htm
Indeed, as stated in section 6 of the Call, on the eligibility criteria, a non-EU country participating in a sea basin strategy may apply to this Call, as is the case of Tunisia. For further information, please, check answer to question 10 and section 6 of the call for proposals which establishes the eligibility conditions of the proposal.
15 - I would like to know if this call is only for small and medium-sized enterprises or if municipalities can participate ?
Yes, both small and medium-sized enterprises and municipalities can participate. The consortium must comprise at least 1 SME and 1 public entity as defined in section 6.3 of the call text. In case no public authority is member of the consortium, the proposal must contain a letter of support to the project idea. Please also see answer to question 8.
16- To send an application for this call do I need a PIC number?
No, to apply for this call you don't need a PIC number, filling in the legal entity form is enough.
17- If a partner has a PIC number, does he need to fill in the LEF (legal entity form) ?
Yes, the partner still has to fill in the LEF. The PIC number is a reference code used in a number of programmes and calls of the European Commission, however, under the EMFF, this number does not replace the LEF.
18- I would like to know if the deadline for the submission of project proposals is confirmed at 15th March 2016?
Yes, the deadline is the 15th March 2016 at 16.00 (GMT +1)
19 - I inform you that XXX City Network was established officially [...] in October 2015 and it is an initiative of twenty three sponsoring organizations who gave financial support to the Network in its first year of operations. It involves a number of local authorities from Greece, Cyprus, Italy, Poland and Bulgaria, who are joining forces in order to develop and effectively manage public services and infrastructure and to respond optimally to the needs of citizens by providing better quality services and boosting local development. Please let me know if my organization is eligible to submit a proposal under this call for proposals for EU grants of the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund.
This Call is open to public authorities. In order to find out it your organisation is eligible, please consult the section 6.2 of the Call for Proposals (see: "Examples of potential applicants are: - Public authorities and their networks or associations at European, international, national, regional and local level or organisations acting on behalf of a public authority; [...]")
20 - Is Turkey eligible for the above mentioned call?
Yes, as Turkey is located in the Mediterranean Sea Basin and as it participates in cooperation frameworks with the European Union, Turkey is eligible for this call.
21 - Slovenian divers discovered that rivers have even greater potential as a diving destination than our sea. Would Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage inland waters also be a subject of project funding?
No, unfortunately, this call is only applicable to maritime heritage found in Europe's sea. Therefore basins, inland waters and rivers cannot be included. As described in the general objectives of the Call (section 2.1) this Call is a way to promote the competitiveness of the coastal and maritime tourism sector (thus excluding non-coastal applicants): " The general objective of this action is to promote the creation of touristic thematic routes on underwater cultural heritage and its preservation as a way to promote the competitiveness of the coastal and maritime tourism sector and to promote diversification in tourism offer. The present Call for Proposals aims at awarding grants for two to three projects aiming at the conception, development, establishment and promotion of a tourism product in the field of underwater cultural heritage routes in European sea-basins."
22 - In XXXX we are working on the project Roman Frontier […]. Along this frontier still remains of the Roman Period are present, among which Roman ships and Roman harbours. They are well preserved because they are under the ground water level and important for telling the history of Europe’s civilization and also on shipping. We consider to develop a proposal and ask for a grant. However, the roman archaeological remains are under groundwater but are not in a sea basin. They are all in (former) riverbeds. Can you tell me if the heritage as meant in the call for proposals and that will be part of the route, needs to be located in sea basins, or if it can also concern maritime heritage that is located in the inlands.
No, unfortunately, this call is only applicable to maritime heritage found in Europe's sea. Therefore basins, inland waters and rivers cannot be included. Please see answer to question 21.
23 - Would it be possible to get the text of the call and the documentation in Italian? (Vorremmo la documentazione in italiano oppure i link dove poterla scaricare)
No, unfortunately we don't provide translation of the text of the call or of the related documents in any language. (Gentile Sig., Ci dispiace informarla che il testo del bando in questione (ed eventuali documenti ad esso correlati) può essere fornito solo in inglese in quanto non è stata prevista la traduzione verso le altre lingue ufficiali dell'Unione.)
24 - Concerning the call EASME/EMFF/2015/18.104.22.168 on touristic underwater itineraries, we would like to ask if, as experts in the tourism field of Campania region it would be suitable to propose a touristic route in Campania and in its islands? (In merito al bando Commissione europea - Sito Web Europa EASME/EMFF/2015/22.214.171.124 del 03/12/2015 ( sugli itinerari turistici subacquei) volevamo chiedere se, in quanto esperti di itinerari turistici sulla regione Campania a promozione turistica, fosse valido proporre un'itinerario improntato sulla regione Campania e sulle sue isole? )
Eligibility checks can only be performed during the evaluation phase by the evaluation committee. Section 6 of the call for proposals define specific eligibility criteria for proposals to be submitted under the objectives defined in section 2. Please, pay particular attention to section 6.4 which details the eligibility conditions for the projects activities. In this regard, please note that it is up to the applicant to justify in its proposal how the proposed action is in line with the objectives and priorities of the call for proposals in question. Please note that the list of indicative types of activities referred to in section 6.4 is not exhaustive. (I controlli di ammissibilità possono essere eseguiti solo durante la fase di valutazione da parte del comitato di valutazione. La sezione 6 del bando definisce i criteri specifici di idoneità per le proposte da presentare nell'ambito degli obiettivi definiti nella sezione 2. Vi chiediamo gentilmente di prestare particolare attenzione alla sezione 6.4 che elenca in dettaglio le condizioni di ammissibilità per le attività dei progetti. A questo proposito, si ricorda che spetta al richiedente di giustificare nella sua proposta come l'azione sottoposta sia in linea con gli obiettivi e le priorità del bando in questione. Si prega di notare che l'elenco delle attività a cui si fa riferimento nel punto 6.4 non è esaustivo)
25 - Is there a definition of a "tourist product"?
Yes, please read Section 2.1 ("Generic and specific objectives") of the Call : "Tourism Product: For the purposes of this call, a “tourism product” represents a combination of different aspects (characteristics of the places visited, modes of transport, types of accommodation, specific activities at destination, etc.) around a specific centre of interest, such as nature tours, visits to inland attractors and rural areas, visits to historical and cultural sites, visits to a particular city, the practice of specific sports, the beach, etc. This notion of “tourism product” is not related to the concept of “product” used in economic statistics, but rather to that used by professionals in the tourism business to market specific packages or destinations. It is then possible to speak of specific types of “tourism products”, such as cultural heritage tourism, ecotourism, city tourism, agro-tourism, health tourism, winter tourism, etc."
26 - Is there any mandatory minimum geographical sea coverage?
No, there is no minimum sea coverage. Please note however that in order to be eligible, the application should include applicants from at least two different countries ( see Section 6.1 of the Call).
27 - If the project proposal has a public authority as leader and a SME as compulsory partner, answering the requirements for applicant eligibility, has the letter of support to be asked at any time?
No.The letter of support has to be provided with the application if there is no public authority in the consortium. Please note that there is a difference between public entity and public authority. In the case of this call, and to be eligible, a consortium must comprise at least a public entity ( section 6.3), nevertheless, if this public entity is not a public authority ( see definition of public authority in section 6.2 - footnote 14) the applicant need to provide a letter of support.
27- I have a question regarding the call EASME/EMFF/2015/126.96.36.199 “Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage”: Does the underwater heritage targeted in the proposal have to fall into the definition set by the 2001 UNESCO Convention? Or is the approach of this call broader and would a piece of cultural heritage that has been underwater for less than 100 years be eligible?
Yes. Following the eligibility criteria listed in section 6 of the Call for Proposals, the age of the underwater heritage is not considered as an eligibility criterion. However, as set out in section 9 of the Call, the coherence of the proposal with the 2001 UNESCO Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage will be assessed as part of the award criteria on the basis of which the quality of the proposal will be established.
28 - I am considering putting forward a proposal on the basis of the above call, but wanted to find out the budget restriction and whether there are any requirements in terms of ensuring participation from a minimum number of European member states? The proposal concerns the development of a network of XXX sites, to capitalise through tourism [...]. The boost to tourism at these sites will have a huge positive economic impact on SME's such as accommodation providers, restaurants, tour boat operators etc. Is there an individual I can talk to to discuss the suitability of this proposal to your funding priorities? If not, perhaps you could direct me to the relevant literature as I am having trouble finding it on your website.
The available budget for this Call for proposal is 195.000€ (see section 4 "Budget available"). The minimum number of countries covered is 2 (see section 6.1 - "Geographical eligibility": "To be eligible, the proposal must include applicants from at least 2 different eligible countries as defined in 6.1 A/, of which at least one must be an EU member state."). Concerning your project, unfortunately, in the interest of equal treatment of applicants, the EASME cannot give a prior opinion on the eligibility of an applicant, a partner, an action or specific activities. Please consult the section 6.4 "Eligible activities".
28 - In case of Italian Sme, is the letter of support (art. 6.2 Call for Proposal) provided by a Public body obligatory to participate at the Call? If yes, are there ad hoc offices that can provide these letter?
The letter of support is only requested if no public authority is member of the consortium. There are no ad hoc offices providing these letters. (See section 6.2 : " 3/ In case no public authority is member of the consortium, the proposal must contain a letter of support to the project idea and to the activities proposed, delivered by a public national/or regional governmental authority of the eligible country, namely a Ministry at national level or a Ministry at regional level in charge of tourism and/or regional development, or of any other area which is in relation to the object of the proposal will be considered as an added value for the proposal, testifying that the project has the support of public authorities.").
29 - I would like to know what I have to indicate as reference in the description of the action? Is it compulsory?
You are referring to section 4 of the application form for this call. The reference is not compulsory, it might be the coding you use to track your applications. Please note that the title is compulsory.
30 - Could a cultural association take part in the project as partner?
Yes. Please see section 6.2 "Eligible applicants": " Examples of potential applicants are [...] International, European and national organisations/ associations active in the field of cultural tourism in Europe and related fields"
31 - Is it possible to send the application via e-mail from a Italian certified e-mail system?
No, unfortunately for this Call the application should be sent on paper. An electronic copy is requested on a CD-ROM (see section 15 - Procedure for the submission of proposals).
Would it be possible to have the translation of the Call in italian? (Sarebbe possibile avere il bando e relativi allegati in lingua italiana? Potrei inviare la domanda in lingua italiana?)
No, the Call is only available in English.
32- Can I send my application in italian (Potrei inviare la domanda in lingua italiana?)
Yes, you can submit your proposal in italian. Please note however that drafting the proposal in English would speed up the evaluation process ( see section 5 “Admissibility requirements”) (Sì, può inviare la domanda in lingua italiana. Tuttavia, una domanda inviata in lingua inglese permetterebbe di velocizzare la fase di valutazione (come indicato nella sezione 5 "Prerequisiti di ammissibilità)
33- Concerning the call EASME/EMFF/2015/188.8.131.52 , we would like to ask if any of the consortiums that are preparing a proposition would be interested in integrate our team from XXX . We have a strong background in marine biology and we developed a network of underwater routes at the XXX with the purpose of increasing environmental awareness of users. We believe that this feature can be explored while defining underwater cultural heritage routes. We are, therefore, very interested in integrating an ongoing consortium, because we believe that our area of expertise would be of value to any proposal of this call.
For data protection reasons, we do not publish here partnering question. Nevertheless, we would like to suggest you to use our LinkedIn group "EU project and partners search - EASME" https://www.linkedin.com/groups/8393209
34- I'm interested to participate at the call "Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage" and I would like to know if the same consortium coordinator can participate at this call through two different projects in collaboration with different partners or if this is prohibited.
The text of the call doesn’t foresee any limitations as for the number of participations of a given organisation (or its role in the consortium) in this Call for Proposals. However, please note that accordingly to section 11.1 “Financial provisions- General principles” the same activity cannot be funded twice, therefore a particular attention should be given to this issue, either as coordinator or as partner "11.1 General principles a) Non-cumulative award: An action may only receive one grant from the EU budget. In no circumstances shall the same costs be financed twice by the Union budget. To ensure this, applicants shall indicate the sources and amounts of Union funding received or applied for the same action or part of the action or for its functioning during the same financial year as well as any other funding received or applied for the same action.”
35 - We would like to kindly ask you the following questions regarding the submission of proposals for the Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage: Can a single organization be leading two different proposals? Can a single organization be involved as partner (not leader) in two different proposals?
Please see answer to question 34.
36 - We have a question concerning the eligible entities to apply for the call. Are international NGOs included in the second group "International organisations and their members"?
Yes, for this call international NGOs are eligible entities.
37 - Would an application on maritime underwater heritage (sea vessel) found in a river bed meet the criteria of ‘underwater cultural heritage in European sea basins’? The underwater heritage is part of a European, overseas trade network.
No. Please see answer to question 3.
38- Is there a limit of characters to describe the project in the form?
No, there is no limit in the number of characters to describe the project. However, we would like to encourage the applicants to keep concise insofar as possible.
39 - Would it be possible to have a telephone conversation, possibly in Italian, for more clarification on the call for the submission of proposals?
No. Unfortunately, and following rules of transparency and equal treatment of the applicants set in the Article 112 of the Financial regulation ( http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/FR/TXT/?uri=celex:32012R0966) no information can be given by phone. All your questions should be send to the functional mailbox(EASME-EMFFemail@example.com) and will be answered on this web page.
40 - Can a legal entity be present in two different proposals, acting as coordinator for one proposal and as partner for the other one?
Yes. Please see answer to question 34.
41 - We would like to ask whether Bulgaria can be considered as a beneficiary country.
Yes, Bulgaria (and entities established in Bulgaria) is eligible ( see section 6.1 "Geographical eligibility": "Applicants must be established in: a) an EU Member state [...]" )
42- We are preparing a proposal and the Grant value per applicant will be ≤ EUR 60 000 . In this case the Call for proposals states that the applicants' financial capacity will be on the basis of the following supporting documents: declaration of honour (to be provided by each of the applicants concerned). Does "Per Applicant" mean "Per Partner" of the consortium?
Yes (please see section 6, paragraphs 1 and 2).
Does the threshold of ≤ EUR 60 000 apply per applicant/partner taking part in the consortium?
No, this threshold concerns the total amount of the grant you are applying to.
Given that the grant per applicant/partner will not exceed the threshold of ≤ EUR 60 000 per applicant/partner, do you need any other supporting documents apart from the declaration of honour (to be provided by each of the applicants concerned)?
Yes. Given the requirements of section 6.3, paragraphs 1 and 2 of the published Call, together with what you write ('We are preparing a proposal and the Grant value per applicant will be ≤ EUR 60 000'), the section 8.1. paragraph B must be applied.
-What is the difference between the financial capacity table (see at: checklist for applicants, line 2) and the Financial capacity statement (See at: Annex 1.b) of the Call documents? Is it the same or different? If it is different, where can we find the financial capacity table?
There is no difference between these two expressions: the requested simplified balance sheet has to be produced, if this is the case.
Given that the grand value per applicant/partner of the consortium will be ≤ EUR 60 000, how many declarations of honour do you want per applicant/partner related to the demostration of their financial and operational capacity?
Only one per applicant.
43 - Can I have all the documents in Italian please for Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage. I [...] want to start a new course for handicapped scuba [...]
No, we do not provide the document of the call in Italian ( seen question 23).
44- Can a legal entity be present in two different proposals, acting as coordinator for one proposal and as partner for the other one?
Yes, please see answer to question 34.
45- I would like to know what is meant by “reference” in the Grant application form, section III, form 1
Please check answer to question 29.
1/Since to be eligible the application should include applicants from at least two different countries, may the area intended for the underwater routes belong to just one of the two countries?
If the application should include applicants from at least two different countries ( see Section 6.1 "To be eligible, the proposal must include applicants from at least 2 different eligible countries as defined in 6.1 A/, of which at least one must be an EU member state.") there is no restriction as far as the area to which the underwater heritage belongs. Nevertheless, please note that the tourism product itself (the route) should be the transnational (see section 6.4 “eligible activities”: “Design and develop a transnational cultural underwater heritage tourism product”)
46- Is a region of a member state entitled to apply as a public body?
Yes. Please refer to section 6.2 Eligible applicants: “Examples of potential applicants are: “Public authorities and their networks or associations at European, international, national, regional and local level”
47- I am an Italian Tour Operator. I would like to know if I should submit a partnership agreement with the other members of the consortium (ie a document to formalize the relationship between the partners subjects) as well as fill the original application form.
At the application stage, there is no need to submit an internal cooperation agreement (consortium agreement) that establishes the relationship and specific terms and conditions between the consortium. As stipulated in article II.1.c) of the General Conditions of the Grant Agreement, "the beneficiaries make appropriate internal arrangements for the proper implementation of the project, consistent with the provisions of this Agreement; where provided for in the Special Conditions, those arrangements shall take the form of an internal co-operation agreement between the beneficiaries". As you can see under the Special Conditions of the model Grant Agreement, such an obligation is not included. However, for projects selected for funding, should such a consortium agreement seem pertinent, it will be discussed during grant agreement preparations. Note that the consortium agreement should not be confused with the mandate. Please note that all members of the consortium need to provide the coordinator with a power of attorney in writing through a mandate signed for that purpose. The mandate shall fully empower the coordinator to act on the partners' behalf in the context of the grant agreement. The template for this mandate can be seen in annex 4 to the Grant Agreement. As for the application form, only the coordinator (consortium leader) has to submit the application form.
48- / If there are actors involved in the project who will do some activities that don't require payment, can be considered partner? Or how can be included in the project? Do they have to sign a letter of support?
Yes. According to article 2 (g) of the Financial Regulation, 'beneficiary’ means a natural or legal person with whom a grant agreement has been signed or to whom a grant decision has been notified'. If an entity implements parts of the action (conducts some project activities), it can be a beneficiary even though it does not request the financial contribution. Besides, as specified under section 11.2 of the call for proposals (p.22) on contributions in kind "The external co-financing may be made up of contributions in kind in order to cover other costs necessary to carry out the project. Such contributions must not exceed: - either the costs actually borne and duly supported by accounting documents; - or, in the absence of such documents, the costs generally accepted on the market in question. In-kind contributions shall be presented separately in the estimated budget to reflect the total resources allocated to the action. Their unit value is evaluated in the provisional budget and shall not be subject to subsequent changes.In-kind contributions shall comply with national tax and social security rules.
49- Referring to the call in object, we are an italian group of European project managers interested in this call, so we would like to receive all the necessary documents and information to submit the draft
Please check the webpage: https://ec.europa.eu/easme/en/call-proposal-thematic-routes-underwater-c... , where all the necessary documents are available
50- Regarding the eligibility conditions of the consortia: is a consortium of SMEs eligible as a SME? We have a consortium of a lot of travel agencies which is interested in participating but the call expressly refers to only one SME, not a consortium of SMEs.
Please check section 6.2 "eligible applicants" of the Call text . "Examples of potential applicants are: Travel agents and tour operators and their umbrella associations;" Thus if the group of travel agencies you are mentioning has constituted an umbrella organisation, it is eligible. Please note that, as such, a consortium of SMEs cannot be part of the consortium to be constituted for this call. ( see point 6.2 eligible applicants: “Applicants must be legal entities.”) Nevertheless, according to section 6.3 (6.3 Eligibility conditions for consortia: “The consortium must consist of a minimum of three organisations. The consortium must comprise at least: a) one SME – a small or medium-sized enterprise - active in the tourism sector”), but there is no limit in the number of SMEs that can be part of the consortium. Thus, several SMEs could be part of the consortium.
51- Given that the call text has been updated I would like to know: 1. If the 20% co-financing can be covered by SME labour cost (project partner). 2. Does labour cost constitute as "In Kind Contribution" ?
1- The 20% of co-financing can come either by the beneficiary's proper resources or by in kind contributions by third parties, which can only be affiliated entities (so the link between the two entities should be already established). 2- Yes, in kind contribution can be given in the form of staff made available to the Beneficiary, buildings, equipment or any consumable needed for the realization of the project.
52 - Are initiatives from Montenegro valid, considering that we are not yet EU country? Yes, Montenegro is eligible, please refer to section 6.1 Geographical eligibility: "A/ Applicants must be established in:a) an EU Member state or b) a non-EU country participating in the EU macro-regional strategies or sea-basin strategies." Montenegro being located on the Mediterranean sea-basin and participating in the Union for Mediterranean, it is an eligible country. Please note that your application should be submitted jointly wit at least one EU member state ( see section 6.1 : "B. B/ To be eligible, the proposal must include applicants from at least 2 different eligible countries as defined in 6.1 A/, of which at least one must be an EU member state.".
53- The question concerns a country eligibility criteria, namely whether Lebanon is one of the eligible countries according to the sea-basin strategies and more specifically the EUROMED.
Yes, Lebanon being member of the Union for Mediterranean and bordering the Mediterranean sea-bassin, it is eligible for this Call. Please note that your application should be submitted jointly wit at least one EU member state (see section 6.1 : "B. B/ To be eligible, the proposal must include applicants from at least 2 different eligible countries as defined in 6.1 A/, of which at least one must be an EU member state.".
54 - Does "co-financing of projects amounts to €345.000eur" mean per one project?
No, please refer to section 4 "Budget" of the call: "The total budget earmarked for the co-financing of projects amounts to € 345.000.This budget might be increased under exceptional circumstances by up to 20%. The EASME expects to fund three to four proposals.The EASME reserves the right not to distribute all the funds available"
55- Please let us know if the budget available (345.000 Euro) is meant to be dispersed per project or for 3-4 selected projects in total.
Please refer to question 54. 345.000 Euro is the total amount to be distributed between all the selected projects.
56- I'd like to ask whether an Onlus (No-profit Organization of Social Utility, as defined by the Italian law D.Lgs 460/97) can be regarded as a SME or not.The Onlus I'm considering is involved in research, as well as didactic and leisure/sporting (snorkeling, diving) activities. They promote protection and valorisation of underwater environment and cultural heritage.
To determine whether your organisation is or not a SME, please refer to the definition of a SME of DG GROW: http://ec.europa.eu/growth/smes/business-friendly-environment/sme-defini...
57- We have begun to explore possibilities with counterpart organisations in XXX and XXX, but urgently require your guidance as to whether there is any additional guidance which we should be aware of relating to the types of organisations which might form a partnership to take a bid forward.
Please, refer to section 6 of the Call "Eligible applicants" which describes the type of applicants eligible for this call.
58- Is Jordan eligible?
Yes, as part of the Union for Mediterranean Jordan is eligible. However please note that to be eligible you have to be in cooperation with an EU member state.
59- In the section VI of the grant application form (involvement of third parties in the project), do you have to list all the Companies whose involvement will give rise to the subcontracting costs? (for example: web site creation, graphic design, etc.)
No, we don't provide such list. Please refer to Section 11.1 "Financial provisions " point e) " Sub-contracting implies one or several applicants hiring a contractor following the applicants' internal procurement procedures, in order to carry out specific tasks or activities which form part of the action as described in the proposal (see also general conditions of the grant agreement)."
60- If the budget is ≤ 60.000 €, is it necessary to provide the financial capacity table?
No, please refer to section 8 of the call text :"The applicants' financial capacity will be assessed on the basis of the following supporting documents:A) Grant value is ≤ EUR 60 000: • a declaration of honour (to be provided by each of the applicants concerned)"
61- In the section III of the grant application form (information on the action for which the grant is requested), which information do we have to provide in the item “Reference”?
This is your own reference, please see answer to the question 29.
62- Could you please confirm that the hardcopy of the application form and annexes is considered valid when sent by registered mail with the postmark date before march 15th?
Yes, Please check section 15. Please note that the deadline has been extended to 15th April 2016.
63- In case our consortium has 2 public bodies and 1 SME, do we need to demonstrate experience (Operational capacity 8.2)
Yes, the operational capacity has to be demonstrated for all private applicants even if public entities are part of the same consortium. the only entities not having to prove operational capacity are the public authorities (please refer to section 8.2 :"Public authorities operating in the fields listed in section 6.2.2 do not need to provide evidence of their operational capacity.").
64- Under 8.2. Operational Capacity additional documents are not necessary for public authorities (Museums, Heritage Boards), but do we need to add CV, equipment and patent list concerning private SME?
Yes. Each private applicant taking part in the consortium should demonstrate their operational capacity by sending the supporting documents listed under section 8.2.
65- Is there a limit for the cost per hour for each partner??
2. The overall limitation criterion for any kind of cost is that it shouldn't be an 'excessive or reckless expenditure', as stated in the paragraph on 'ineligible costs' of the Section 11.2 "Form of funding". A computing instruction is provided in the final sheet ('hourly rate calculation template') of the 'Annex 6 – Financial Statement'.
66- If the project considers a scholarship supplies from a public entity, can the coordinator be the recipient of the scholarship? Is the cost admissible?
Coordination tasks cannot be subcontracted in any way by the Coordinator, as coordination constitutes an operational capacity criterion( that should be checked during the evaluation. Concerning the scholarship, as long as it is not an EU scholarship, and it is not specifically given to the Coordinator for the project (otherwise it would be considered as receipt to the grant) it can be used.
67- If there are actors involved in the project who will do some activities that don't require payment, can be considered partner? Or how can be included in the project? Do they have to sign a letter of support?
Yes, such partners can be included in the project. They need to follow the same rules as any other partner.
68- Could you please verify whether a newly created entity have to submit the Financial Capacity Table or is sufficiently to submit a business plan?
According to Section 8 of the Call text, newly created entities can replace the balance account by business plan but not the financial capacity table.Please note that a newly created entity is an entity that is less than one year old and that additional documents could be required at a later stage.
69- XXX is one out of the XX XXX National Research Institutes supervised by the XXX Ministry of University and Research and its board of directories is appointed by ministerial decree. XXX statute clearly indicates that one of the statutory purposes of its research is oceanography and maritime affairs. Will XXX be supposed to give proof of its eligibility? If so which kind of documents will it be asked to provide?
Yes. Please refer to section 6.3 of the Call : " To be considered a public entity, the body in question must fulfil all of the following criteria: • The body has been created by a public authority or is governed by private law with a public service mission; • The public interest of the body must be explicitly mentioned in the relevant legal or administrative act(s); • The body is financed totally or to a large extent (more than 50%) by public sources; • In the event that the entity stops its activities, all rights and obligations including financial rights and obligations will be transferred to a public authority. For bodies to be considered as public entity, proof should be provided with the application of compliance with the above criteria." A proof of establishment in the case of a public entity could be the decree establishing the entity for example.
70- What are the forms to be filed and signed by the affiliated entities (with no budget) ? Would a letter of intent be sufficient?
Please, refer to the Call text: section 6.2 and 7.3 and the checklist in the Application form.
71-The Declaration of Honour is required only to the Coordinator of the Consortium/Partnership? To other partners is required only the Mandates? So, Must the Coordinator sign the Declaration Honour and must partners sign only Mandates?
Please, refer to section 8.2 of the Call text: "all applicants have to submit a declaration on their honour". All applicants ( also the the coordinator) should submit a declaration of honour. All partners to the project ( but the coordinator) should also fill in the mandates form.
72- Can the two yearly official budgets be submitted in the italian language version?
Yes, the yearly budget can be submitted in any official language of the European Union.
73- XXX is a private company (a cooperative) that operates mainly in the field of environmental studies and monitoring of the sea [...], but is also involved in training activities [...], as well as the provision of services in tourism activities [...]. Can my company be a partner of a public body within the call for proposal "Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage”?
Please read the section 6.2 "Eligible applicants" of the call text. Private companies can indeed participate in our call.
78- We kindly ask you for your guidance on how to complete the number No......in page 2 of the mandate form for partners/beneficiaries.The relevant paragraph reads:"for the purposes of the signature and the implementation of the grant agreement .................. and No…………… with the European Commission's Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (EASME)(hereinafter referred to as "the grant agreement")" ;
Please note that the mandate does not need to be included at the application stage, it will only be requested when the Grant Agreements will be signed with the successful applicants. At submission stage, you only need to provide details on the consortium in the application form.
79- Please, provide a clarification as to whether the Grant value (that may be less or more than 60,000 euros), in the 8.1 Financial capacity section of amended call pp.16, refers to the Total Grant requested for the proposed action or to the individual Grant Value requested by each applicant.
Yes, the grant value refers to the total grant requested for the proposed action ( see also question 42)
80- We would like to ask if the consortium must be formed already before sending the proposal on 15th April , or if you just need a letter of intent between the parties and in case no public authority is member of the consortium, the proposal must contain a letter of support to the project idea.
Yes, the consortium must be formed before the submission of the proposal: partners should be identified in the application form. Indeed, if no public authority is member of the consortium, a letter of support should be provided.
81- Regarding the contents of the mandate, where it says ““for the purposes of the signature and the implementation of the grant agreement [Title & No] with the European Commission's Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (EASME) (hereinafter referred to as "the grant agreement")”, what information should be written for “title and nº”? Does it refer to the title that we give to our own project, or to the official name of the call ("Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage", EASME/EMFF/2015/184.108.40.206”? Please refer to question 77.
82- Where can we download Declaration on honour template? Is it necessary that all applicants filled it or only coordinator entity?
The template can be found in the application form ( https://ec.europa.eu/easme/sites/easme-site/files/2015-220.127.116.11%20-%20Und...) . It is necessary that all applicants fill this declaration.
83- To realise the objectives of call "Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage – EMFF/2015/18.104.22.168", we should design and develop a transnational product and run a pilot test to validate the transnational tourism product concept So, the concept of this call of transnational is crucial. Can you explain us more this concept, please ? Must the products respect a territorial continuity ? Could we submit you a project with partners in XXX, to develop a joint cultural offer in black sea about XXX ? Is it possible for us ?
83- To realise the objectives of call "Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage – EMFF/2015/22.214.171.124", we should design and develop a transnational product and run a pilot test to validate the transnational tourism product concept So, the concept of this call of transnational is crucial. Can you explain us more this concept, please ? Must the products respect a territorial continuity ? Could we submit you a project with partners in XXX, to develop a joint cultural offer in black sea about XXX ? Is it possible for us ?Yes, in the case of this Call what matters is that it is a transnational product, but it doesn't need to be a territorial contiguous product.
84- If in the consortium there are also Affiliated Entities (SME) who will be part of the project activities but will not take financial part in the project do they need to complete and send Financial Capacity Table?
No, in that case they don't need to complete the financial capacity table.
85- I would like to know if it is possible to cover the project costs with the income generated by the project, as I can see in the budget in the Estimated revenue of the action (Table The point 2. Income generated by the action)
The income generated by the action will be considered as a receipt in accordance with art.II.25.3.2 of the Grant Agreement. Receipts which result to a profit of the Beneficiary will be deducted from the final amount of the grant – art.II. 25.3.5 so as to ensure the principle of non-profit. However, given that the call provides for the income generated to be used as a means of co-financing, it will only be deducted from the final amount of the grant when it surpasses the beneficiary's own contribution.
86- Since in our project we would like to also introduce underwater archaelogical site which is under concession of Ministry of Culture is the cost of annual concession which has to be payed by a diving center an eligible cost in the budget of this call?
Yes, it is possible to consider the concession fee as an eligible cost, provided that it is necessary to carry out the proposed project successfully.
87- In the section VI of the grant application form (involvement of third parties in the project), do you have to list all the Companies whose involvement will give rise to the subcontracting costs? (for example: web site creation, graphic design, etc.)
Yes, all the third parties/subcontractors should be mentioned there.
88- Does GA annex II "DRAFT GRANT AGREEMENT FOR AN ACTION WITH MULTIPLE BENEFICIARIES" need to be included at the application stage? No, this is only an indicative document, that will have to be complete later on, if the proposition is successful.
89- We are working on the proposal and would like to know if it would be recommended to sign an agreement among the partners in order to establish the division of tasks and earnings one the tourist product has been tested, fine tuned and launched on the market. Also, would the budget cover the purchase of machinery? Unfortunately, we are not in a position to give you advice on how to organise with your partners once the product is on the market. Concerning the purchase of machinery, no, please refer to section 11.2 of the Call; only the depreciation cost of equipment is considered as an eligible cost.
90 -could list all necesary documents to be provided by ALL applicants (applicants that are not public authorities)
1- Exclusion criteria compliance: Declaration on honour that the applicant is not in a situation listed in article 106, 107 or 109 of the financial Regulation (eg: bankruptcy) (see section 7.3 of the call) (please note that this should be done for affiliated entities as well) 2 - Financial capacity compliance :Declaration on honour that they have stable and sufficient sources of funding to maintain their activity throughout the period during which the action is being carried out and to participate in its funding. (section 8.1 of the Call). The profit and loss account, the balance sheet for the past 2 years for which the accounts were closed ( for newly created entities, the business plan might replace the above documents); the financial capacity table provided for in the grant application form, filled in with the relevant statutory accounting figures, in order to calculate the ratios as detailed in the form. 3- Operational capacity compliance: a declaration of honour stating that the applicants have the professional competencies as well as appropriate qualifications necessary to complete the proposed actions (see section 8.2 of the call). besides this should be accompanied by CVs of the
people responsible for the implementation of the project and where appropriate, a description of the technical equipment.
For the CONSORTIUM, it must have demonstrated experience in the areas related to one of the fields as specified in Section 6.2.2 and adequate technical (human resources, equipment, etc.) capacity to implement the respective actions Please note that if no public authority is member of the consortium you should obtain a letter of support ( see section 6.2)
91- Should the coordinator fill the same documents mentioned under question 91 of the FAQ section of the Call? Yes, coordinator should fill in the same documents, in addition, in his role of coordinator, he should fill the application form and the budget form.
92- With reference to LEGAL REPRESENTATIVE (AUTHORISED TO SIGN THE AGREEMENT) in Section 1 of the Application form of Call, can you provide guidance as to how the MANDATE field needs to be completed.Does it refer to the Mandate that needs to be signed by each Applicant (except Coordinator)?
No, this does not refer to the mandates to be signed by each applicant.the box "mandate" in the section 1 should mention who will sign the mandate enabling the legal representative of the coordinator to sign the contract in its own behalf, with the (EASME).
93- In Award Criteria listed in Call for proposal under Cost effectiveness is said:Applicants shall also provide an estimation of costs and revenues and financial effectiveness, for the chosen solution in the medium term as wells as a business plan in view of the period after the EU co-financing. Since there is no business plan listed as separate obligatory document in application package where and how do you expect us to provide business plan?
Indeed, there is no template for the business plan. It is up to the applicant to decide about the format of his business plan.
94- Is it possible that signed annexes like Mandates are sent to EASME in a scanned and printed version or is it required that all documents sent to you are originals?
Section 14 of the Call for Proposals establishes that the application shall be submitted in 2 copies - one original clearly identified as such, plus 1 signed copy. Only the supporting documents in the proposal identified as such in the Call for Proposals can be provided as a copy.
95- A possibility to propose a cultural touristic product has emerged from different meetings in Martinique, French West Indies. As the call of project mentions several times the expression "European sea-basins" I wanted to be sure a project concerning West Indies could be eligible. Martinique is part of Europe as French overseas territory but geographically is not linked with European sea-basins. In this case is it needed to find an European applicant to form the consortium ? A partnership with French SME may be possible A partnership with Canadian or american SME could be eligible as well ?
Yes, Martinique is eligible. Nevertheless, having a French SME would not be sufficient as a second participant as the main purpose of the Call is the creation of a European route on underwater heritage and would require the involvement of at least two different countries. See the point "6.1. B/ To be eligible, the proposal must include applicants from at least 2 different eligible countries as defined in 6.1 A/, of which at least one must be an EU member state." Nonetheless, you could can apply with a Canadian or US partner, as they are also members of the Atlantic sea basin.
96- Is it obligatory to provide external audit certificates for final report?
No,the external audit is not mandatory
97-What is the difference between sub-contracting and the financial support to third parties?
'Sub-contracting' is a way to implement the project, whereas 'financial support to third parties' is one of the political goals of an action co-financed by EC.
98- Is it allowed that partner pay travel costs to the persons who are not employees?
Yes, this is allowed, provided it belongs to usual way of doing of the party. Besides, it has always to be justified, recorded in the accounting books and auditable by deputed third parties.
99- We want to submit a Proposal "Call: Thematic Routes on Underwater Cultural Heritage" . Our consortium consist from 6 Applicants. At the Budget Form the total number of Applicants are 5.
How can we Add one more Applicant and all the changes we will have automatically will filled in the "Consolidated estimated budget" ?
to add additional partners,you can duplicate one of the tab of the excel worksheet
100- In the checklist for applicants at the end of Grant Application Form you mentioned twice Declaration of honour: -Declaration on honour and supporting documents for operational capacity (Section 8.2) -Declarations of honour from all applicants and affiliated entities are attached to this application form. Is it the same (only one) Declaration of honour to be found in the Grant Application Form and to be filled by all applicants (coordinator and each applicant)?
Yes, the coordinator and the partners are signing the same documents.
101- Can you confirm whether you need to have the original signed and stamped copies of all individual partner documents (mandate, declaration etc), or is it OK for scans of the originals of these to be included with the main application which will be printed and signed by us as lead partner?
Please, refer to question 94.
102- I would like to know if for the personnel cost we can use hours of our personal investigators that already have an employment contract with our entity.
Yes, you can, provided that the hours reported for this personnel is hours dedicated to the project.
103- In the Call for proposals under 6.4 is written that one of the core activities should be:"2. Run a pilot test to validate the transnational underwater heritage tourism product concept." Does that mean that organising a group of people who will test the thematic tour package as a tourists is eligible cost (accommodation, travel, subsistence for them in the included destinations)? How should we choose the testing group?
It is up to the applicants to define the best methodology to reach the objective set: gathering enough data to validate the product concept. Also, please note that pilot test the will be evaluated on the basis of the award criteria set in section 9. the pilot test is something that you will need to carry out during the implementation of your proposal, so it has to be part of your proposal. If you intend to cover part or the full cost from the EU funding, you should also pre-calculate the cost and include it in the budget template. Please also consult section 11.2 "Eligible costs" of the call.
104- Is the document Financial capacity table that can be downloaded (Annex 1.b – Financial capacity statement) the same/one document as the profit and loss account, the balance sheet?
Yes, the financial capacity table is our template that you should fill in with the data of your t Profit and Loss Account and your Balance Sheet. In addition to this document you should also send us these two documents so as to verify that indeed the numbers inserted at the Financial Capacity Table are the correct ones.
105- We are a consortium of more than 5 partners. We have duplicated, in the Budget Form, one of the tab of the excel worksheet but it is not linked with the "Consolidated estimated budget" and it is not appeared the final estimated Budget of the Action . There is another way to link all the tabs? It is possible to upload a new budget form with more Applicants?
Thank you for letting us know about this problem, please upload this version of the budget form, which was adapted to more applicants.Budget form (more than 5 partners)
106- The declaration of honour requesting the grant are usually sent only by the applicant or lead partner. In this call you ask all participants to provide a declaration of honour where they request the grant (80% of total project budget). So each partner should sign a declaration of honour that shows the total grant requested to the EASME. Isn’t it? What about commitment letters from co-financiers? In the check list you name them, but you do not specify if they are needed only for third parties co-funding the project or also for project partners that, of course will co-fund it. If project partners have to provide commitment letters is there a model to be used?
Additional re-assurance from the Third parties that will participate in the action is not necessary at this stage.
107- Does it grant amount in Declaration of Honour refer to the grant amount requested for the whole project or for the each partner's budget?
The grant amount refers to the part of each partner.
108- If one of the partners in the consortium is hotel does his project costs like accommodation and consumables are reported in the budget as in-kind contribution?
If the hotel is a partner of the consortium this cannot be considered as an in-kind contribution. The hotel should declare its costs.
109- We are a newly created start up member of a consortium of applicants within the call in object. We understand that we can replace the Profit and loss Account with the Business plan, however on the call text and the final checklist we find an instruction stating that also newly created she's must fill in the financial capacity provided for in the Grant application form. We can't find this table nowhere within the grant application form or the other files and annexes
The financial capacity is the annex 1b to the call: https://ec.europa.eu/easme/sites/easme-site/files/2015-126.96.36.199%20-%20Und...
110-I am from the University of XXXX, in XXX, we are preparing a proposal and have a question.In the point 4.2 on 4.2.1: as we are one public university (one public entity). What we should to put in this section? or we could leave that empty ?
For the universities this section is not applicable indeed, unless private companies have shares in it.