Operational Programme 'Abruzzo'

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


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On 17 August 2007, the European Commission approved a Regional Operational Programme for Abruzzo in Italy for the period 2007-2013. The Operational Programme falls within the framework laid out for the Regional Competitiveness and Employment Objective and has a total budget of around €345 million. Community assistance through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) amounts to some €140 million, which represents approximately 0.5% of the total EU investment earmarked for Italy under the Cohesion Policy for 2007-2013.

1. The purpose and aim of the EU investment

The aim of the Operational Programme is to play a key role in boosting competitiveness through research and innovation (41% of funds), reducing carbon emissions through the promotion of renewable energy and energy efficiency (11% of funds), reducing the digital divide through the promotion of an innovative society (15% of funds), and enhancing the attractiveness of the region with a particular focus on cities and mountain areas (33% of funds).

2. The expected impact of the investment

The Programme is expected to result in the creation of about 1 600 direct new jobs, an 8.3% increase in small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) labour productivity, a 30% increase in R&D expenditure in the business enterprise sector, and an increase of 15% in patent applications lodged with the European Patent Office (EPO). In terms of energy, the region aims to decrease the regional intensity by 4% and increase the share of energy produced from renewable sources from 41% to 49%. Finally, a 15% increase in access to Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) is expected by firms.

3. Priority axes

The Operational Programme is structured around the following priorities:

Priority 1: Research and Development, Innovation and Entrepreneurship [approximately 39.3% of total funding]

The priority aims to strengthen the regional innovation system with a focus on the role of the private sector, technological transfer and cooperation among firms and research institutes. Priority will be given to actions taking a district/cluster approach and addressing specific strategic fields (automotive, electronic and agro-food). "Innovation poles" will be promoted using a district approach amongst enterprises and enterprises and other operators. The priority will also support industrial research, start-ups, eco-innovation, innovative and services for SMEs, and notably access to credit for SMEs.

Priority 2: Energy [approximately 10.2% of total funding]

This priorty promotes greater efficiency in the use of energy resources (long-term sustainability) at all levels of the energy chain, boosting production from renewable sources, improving energy efficiency and raising public awareness on energy saving.

Priority 3: Information Society [approximately 14.3% of total funding]

This priority aims to reduce the digital divide, notably in mountain areas, by promoting greater access and use of ICT. There is a particular focus on ICT services for enterprises.

Priority 4: Territorial Development [approximately 32.2% of total funding]

The priority takes a clears territorial approach and will be implemented through territorial or urban integrated programmes concerning mountain and urban areas respectively, and focusing on "environmental and cultural heritage", "risk prevention and physical rehabilitation", and "urban rehabilitation and development".

Priority 5: Technical Assistance [approximately 4.0% of total funding]

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

Financial and Technical information

Operational Programme 'Abruzzo'

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
R&D, Innovation and Entrepreneurship 55 000 000 80 913 247 135 913 247
Energy 14 260 495 20 979 326 35 239 821
Information Society 20 000 000 29 422 999 49 422 999
Territorial Development 45 000 000 66 201 747 111 201 747
Technical Assistance 5 500 000 8 091 325 13 591 325
Total 139 760 495 205 608 644 345 369 139