Operational Programme 'East Netherlands'

Programme under the Regional Competitiveness and Employment Objective, co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF)


Additional tools


On 27 July 2007, the European Commission approved a Regional Operational Programme for East Netherlands for the period 2007-13. The Programme falls within the framework laid out for the Regional Competitiveness and Employment Objective and has a total budget of around €363 million. Community funding through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) amounts to some €164 million, which represents approximately 8.6% of the total EU investment earmarked for the Netherlands under the Cohesion Policy for 2007-13.

1. Aim and purpose of the programme

The Programme covers the provinces of Gelderland and Overijssel, a region representing about 25% of the country's surface area and 19% of the population. The region's GDP per capita is above the EU average, but still some 15% below the country average (124.8%). The central objective of the Programme is to turn East Netherlands into a leading European innovation region. A key component of the regional strategy is the 'Triangle' of innovation clusters, namely Arnhem/Nijmegen ('Health'), Wageningen ('Food') and Enschede ('Technology').

Key priorities of the Operational Programme include:

  • Strengthening the knowledge economy (R&D, technological development and human capital), entrepreneurship and competitiveness;
  • Stimulating innovation and employment;
  • Developing an excellent knowledge infrastructure for key economic activities;
  • Stimulating cooperation between research and knowledge institutions and business;
  • Strengthening urban networks as catalysts for innovation and employment;
  • Boosting innovating in transport systems;
  • Stimulating the ecological sustainability of economic activities;
  • Promoting the socio-economic attractiveness of the region, especially of urban networks.

2. Expected impact of investments

The Operational Programme is expected to:

  • create 2175 jobs;
  • create100 cooperation initiatives between research and knowledge institutions and business;
  • support 2030 small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and 180 start-ups (< 5 years);
  • modernise 210 ha of industrial estate and 200 000 m2 of industrial premises.

3. Priorities

The Operational Programme is structured according to the following priorities:

Priority 1: Knowledge Economy, Entrepreneurship and Innovation [approximately 58.3% of total funding]

This priority aims to strengthen the three knowledge clusters (food, health and technology), in addition to increasing the innovative capacity and competitiveness of businesses.

Priority 2: Attractive Regions [approximately 27.6% of total funding]

The aims under this priority are to improve accessibility and mobility in the region and enhance the quality of working and living environments.

Priority 3: The Urban Dimension [approximately 10.5% of total funding]

Under this priority, the Programme will provide an integrated approach to improving urban areas in nine cities (Arnhem, Nijmegen, Apeldoorn, Ede, Deventer, Zwolle, Almelo, Enschede and Hengelo).

Priority 4: Technical Assistance [approximately 3.6% of total funding]

Technical assistance will be provided for implementing the Programme. Financial support is also available and will cover administration, monitoring and control.

Financial and Technical information

Operational Programme 'East Netherlands'

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 Economy, Entrepreneurship and Innovation 95 276 000 95 276 000 211 725 000
Attractive Regions 45 128 000 55 156 000 100 284 000
The Urban Dimension 17 132 000 19 036 000 38 072 000
Technical Assistance 6 564 000 6 564 000 13 128 000
Total 164 100 000 176 032 000 363 209 000