United Kingdom - ERDF Northern Ireland

United Kingdom

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Programme description

The ERDF programme aims to bolster the overall competitiveness of the Northern Ireland economy. This will be achieved through (1) targeted investment in R&D technology transfer to Northern Ireland businesses and (2) a mix of grant and financial instruments to support Northern Ireland SMEs. In this way the ERDF programme will provide an essential vehicle in the attainment of Northern Ireland's economic objectives in the medium-term. The programme will also provide support for the upgrading of Northern Ireland's electricity grid in order to accommodate the expected substantial increase in generation of renewable energy over the medium-term.

Funding Priorities

The Programme thus focusses on three main priorities:

  • Enhancement of competitiveness of the economy through promotion of business investment in R&D-led innovation;
  • Increasing the competitiveness of the SME sector and addressing constraints in the sphere of access to capital;
  • Distribution of renewable energy

Expected impacts

  • Around €113m will be invested to increase R&D - aiming to almost double the number of high growth SMEs to reach 1,300 in 2023 and to assist 200 Northern Ireland companies to engage in R&D activity for the first time.


  • More than EUR 135 million will be used to increase the competitiveness of SMEs, helping them to access capital through a mix of grant and financial instruments. Over 6,000 companies will be receiving financial and non‑financial support and 2,800 jobs should be created, while some €60m in private investments are expected to match the public spending;


Promoting the low-carbon economy by upgrading the electricity grid with almost €47m in investments to accommodate more renewable energy generation over the short to medium-term. This investment will support the increase from 19.5% to 40% of electricity consumption in Northern Ireland to be generated from renewable sources by 2020, and to maintain this level of consumption through to 2023.


  • United Kingdom


  • Regional Development Fund (ERDF): 313,254,888.00 €

Thematic priorities

Financial information

Total OP budget: 522,091,480.00 €

Total EU contribution: 313,254,888.00 €

View the data

CCI number: 2014UK16RFOP003