Operational Programme 'Upper Austria'

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


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The European Commission approved on May 4 2007 a regional development programme for the Austrian Bundesland of Upper Austria for the period 2007-2013, the Operational Programme "Regional Competitiveness Upper Austria 2007-2013". This programme involves Community support for Upper Austria within the framework of "Regional competitiveness and employment" objective ("phasing out" regions not included). The total budget of the programme is around EUR 191 million and the Community assistance through the ERDF amounts to EUR 95.5 million (approximately 6.54% 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 strengthen competitiveness and innovation potential of the regional economy and to keep Upper Austria as an attractive region, while observing the principles of sustainable development and gender equality. This approach shall guarantee the quality of life, income and employment of all inhabitants of the Bundesland.

With GDP per capita at more than 120% of EU average, the traditionally industrial and export-oriented Upper Austria 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, with the aim of increasing research & development expenditure to 3% of the GDP, thus substantially contributing to achievement of the Lisbon strategy objectives. Reducing the gap between urban and structurally weaker peripheral areas of the Bundesland is also an important aim of the support. Gothenburg's objective of sustainability, as well as the principle of gender mainstreaming has received a special status of horizontal objectives in the programme.

2. The expected impact of the investment

The programme will ensure creation of 670 new jobs, out of which 485 in the research & development sector, trigger a total investment of EUR 592 million (six times the Community assistance), install additional renewable energy capacity of 12 MW and decrease the greenhouse gases emissions by 22,000 tonnes/year.

3. Priority axes

The principal objectives of the Regional Competitiveness Upper Austria 2007-2013 programme are: establishment of innovative and knowledge-base oriented economy and increasing attractiveness of all regions of the Bundesland.

The Regional Competitiveness Upper Austria 2007-2013 programme is structured into the following priority axes:

Priority axis 1: Knowledge base and innovation

In the current period of globalisation, Upper Austria'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. Small and medium enterprises are the key success factor and stand in the focus of the programme, with wide range of support activities from establishing the company up to networking and clustering with others.

Priority axis 2: Attractive regions

Maintaining high living standard of the inhabitants, quality of the environment and regional accessibility of Upper Austria is in the spotlight of the second programme priority axis. The idea to make the region more attractive for business and the people will be streamlined through targeted and balanced support for the regional governance structures. 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. The Bundesland will be able to draw on EU funds for specific assistance to urban development of the capital Linz and for preservation of the cultural heritage.

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 'Upper Austria'

Intervention Type

Operational Programme

CCI no


Number of decision


Final approval date


Breakdown of finances by priority axis

Priority Axis EU Investment National Public Contribution Total Public Contribution
Knowledge base and innovation 75 843 517 75 843 517 151 687 034
Attractive regions 17 700 000 17 700 000 35 400 000
Technical assistance 2 000 000 2 000 000 4 000 000
Total 95 543 517 95 543 517 191 087 034