Operational Programme 'Andalusia'

Programme under the Convergence Objective, co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF)


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On 3 December 2007, the European Commission approved an Operational Programme for the Andalusia region in Spain for the period 2007-2013.

This Operational Programme comes under the "Convergence Objective" and has a total budget of around 9.84 billion euros. The financing provided by the European Union out of the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) is almost 6.84 billion euros, representing some 19.4% of Community contributions for the benefit of Spain under the 2007-2013 cohesion policy.

The national contribution provided for amounts to some 3 billion euros and may be partly met by Community loans from the European Investment Bank (EIB) and by other lending instruments.

1. Aim and purpose of the programme

The strategy of the Operational Programme is based on three pillars:

  • the Community's strategic approaches and the national strategic framework establishing the principles for allocating Community funds, together with the national Reform Programme;
  • the regional challenges identified by the analyses of the environment and of the region’s socio-economic potential, together with the priorities laid down in Andalusia's Competitiveness Strategy (2007-2013) concerning its development and competitiveness;
  • the outcome of the evaluations of previous Community programming, and the principles of partnership, sustainable development, equality for men and women and non-discrimination.

The Operational Programme (OP) also contributes to the objectives defined by the regional and national governments, namely:

  • to increase regional/per capita GDP with a view to achieving convergence with the European average;
  • to increase regional productivity by improving production structures;
  • to increase activity and employment rates, especially for women.

Thus 71.29% of the funds allocated to the OP and 92% of the funds allocated to all the ERDF and European Social Fund (ESF) operational programmes contribute toward the realisation of the Lisbon strategy objectives.

2. Expected impact of investment

The overall impact of the Programme on the real GDP of Andalusia is estimated at 2.4% for the entire period 2007-2013. In terms of employment, around 53 000 jobs should be created. The investment generated by the Programme stands at around 12 billion euros.

Knowledge economy activities should benefit 165 research, development and information (R&D&I) centres, and should allow 695 research projects and 1 703 information society projects to be carried out. They should help to increase expenditure on research and development (R&D) from 0.84% to 2% of regional GDP, the female employment rate from 34% to 43%, and the percentage of the population and businesses connected to the Internet from 43% to 75% and from 87% to 93% respectively.

Around 92 000 companies should benefit from entrepreneurial development and innovation activities. These should help to increase the innovation intensity rate from 0.59% to 1.15% and the rate of new business creation from 4.85% to 5.15%, and to double expenditure by firms on environmental protection. The percentage of women in management posts should also increase.

Activities in connection with the environment and water resources should concern 118 waste-processing projects, 480 km of water-supply network with access for 3.3 inhabitants, 124 km of waste-water network with access for 1.5 million inhabitants, and 445 projects representing 71 km² in Natura 2000 zones. The water-infrastructure projects should increase the volume of waste water treated from 0.26 to 0.37 m³ per inhabitant per day and reduce water distribution losses from 20% to 15% of the total volume distributed.

The transport initiatives should benefit 128 km of the Trans-European Rail Freight Network and 14 km of the road network, while initiatives on renewable energy sources should make it possible to increase the power installed from 7.45% to 21% of the total, with more than 60 000 projects.

In the field of local and urban sustainable development, 942 regeneration projects and more than 3 000 projects in the tourism and culture fields are planned.

3. Priorities

The Operational Programme has seven priorities:

Priority 1: Knowledge economy [approx. 4.6% of total investment]

The aim of this priority is to promote research, technological development and innovation on the one hand, and the information society on the other. The planned activities derive from national innovation and research plans (INGENIO 2010) and from regional plans involving scientific research, technology and innovation (PIMA and PAIDI). Activities concerning telecommunications and the information society derive from the Master Plan for the Information Society.

The ERDF will contribute to the following objectives:

  • increasing material and human resources intended for Andalusian R&D&I and modernising their infrastructures;
  • encouraging research into quality and improving the excellence of R&D&I centres;
  • improving investment in R&D by regional businesses, facilitating innovation and encouraging firms to join the information society;
  • enabling the transfer of knowledge between operators in the R&D&I system and improving collaboration and cooperation between research and the production system;
  • reinforcing the construction and equipping of the technological infrastructure.

Priority 2: Entrepreneurial development and innovation [approx. 19% of total investment]

This priority concerns encouraging innovation and entrepreneurship in small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs). Its aims are:

  • to stimulate innovative entrepreneurial initiatives, with particular emphasis on local and urban trade initiatives;
  • to update and encourage competitiveness within the productive fabric by giving priority to innovative projects that provide added value;
  • to spread the use of environmentally-friendly production processes and support firms in Andalusia committed to the growth and globalisation of the regional economy.

As regards the first two aims, a global subsidy managed by the Agency for Andalusian Innovation and Development (IDEA) should be put in place with the participation of a public-private partnership particularly involving the Andalusian Technological Corporation, the Andalusian Network of Technological Spaces (RETA) and the venture capital company INVERCARIA.

Priority 3: Environment, natural surroundings, water resources and risk prevention [approx. 29.7% of total investment]

In connection with the AGUA and Water Quality national plans and regional plans for projects on water supply, sewerage and purification, particular attention will be focused on the water infrastructure (53% of total expenditure for this priority).

The water-supply projects for Seville, Sierra de Huelva and Barrage de Siles, or the sewerage project on the western Costa del Sol, are among those included as a guide in the Operational Programme.

The priority also includes other areas of assistance:

  • promoting biodiversity and protection of the natural environment in the context of the Natura 2000 network, by recovering natural areas;
  • protecting riverbanks;
  • restoring habitats and protecting species;
  • protecting coastal areas and regenerating wasteland from mining activities;
  • preventing natural disasters by means of infrastructure to protect against fire and floods;
  • improving the infrastructure for household, industrial and hazardous waste.

Priority 4: Transport and energy [approx. 31% of total investment]

The transport initiatives envisaged are concerned with:

  • the railway network (Seville–Bobadilla high-speed line, adaptation of the Seville–Cádiz high-speed line, Málaga–Algeciras rail corridor etc.);
  • the road sector (Úbeda–Estepa lateral axis, A-308 motorway);
  • the port systems (creation of areas for logistics, improving urban integration and the supply of ports etc.) and airport systems.

Other initiatives are also planned with a view to enlarging and improving the regional road network, eliminating level crossings for the safety of pedestrians and road traffic, developing multimodal logistics centres and intelligent transport systems, and supporting clean urban transport systems. Total investment in activities linked to transport will account for 90% of the programming under this priority.

The measures planned in the energy sector concern national and regional plans for energy efficiency and renewable energy forms. The aim is to promote the production and use of renewable sources (solar, wind, biomass etc.) and encourage measures to promote energy efficiency.

Priority 5: Sustainable local and urban development [approx. 10.1% of total investment]

Up to 60% of resources here will be allocated to integrated projects for the regeneration of districts or municipalities with more than 50 000 inhabitants, small municipalities and rural areas. Other projects are planned with a view to improving tourist services and protecting and preserving the cultural heritage.

Priority 6: Social infrastructure [approx. 5% of total investment]

The two most important areas of assistance under this priority are education infrastructure and health infrastructure. Other facilities are planned for young children and for day centres for the elderly and disadvantaged groups.

Priority 7: Technical assistance [approx. 0.6% of total investment]

Technical assistance is planned for management, monitoring and follow-up activities, and for evaluation, information and communication.

Financial and Technical information

Operational Programme 'Andalusia'

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 (R+D, information society, ICT) 361 778 076 90 444 530 452 222 606
Entrepreneurial development and innovation 1 312 835 531 562 643 798 1 875 479 329
Environment, natural surroundings, water resources and risk prevention 2 047 767 906 877 614 820 2 925 382 726
Transport and energy 1 985 878 770 300 347 995 2 286 226 765
Local and urban sustainable development 388 190 972 97 047 745 485 238 717
Social infrastructure 388 190 972 97 047 745 485 238 717
Technical assistance 46 666 107 11 666 530 58 332 637
Total 6 531 308 334 2 036 813 163 8 568 121 497