The third call for Green Industry Innovation Bulgaria was launched on 22nd of December 2014. The aim of programme is to increase the competitiveness of enterprises through greening of existing industries, green innovation and entrepreneurship. The programme Bulgaria runs under Norwegian Financial Mechanism 2009-2014, being operated by Innovation Norway.
All projects to be funded under Green Industry Innovation in Bulgaria have to aim the improvement of environmental performance of the enterprises. Norway Grants are available for enterprises looking to extend their production capacity, diversify their production/products or to improve/change their production process.
Funding is provided for projects that focus on the following areas:
• Implementation and investment in innovative environmental friendly technologies;
• Green improvement of products, processes and services;
• Material efficiency, recycling and greening of businesses;
• Development and implementation of “greener” management and production processes
As secondary activities, the following are eligible:
• Marketing activities (local/regional/national fairs, market research etc.);
• Training related to the green investment within the enterprise;
• Sharing best practices on eco-business between Norwegian and Bulgarian entities.
Investments in solar parks and wind parks on green field sites are not eligible under this programme.
Projects submitted for funding must also contribute to one or more of the outcome indicators:
• Environmental technologies successfully adapted for use in new areas;
• Improved green products and services;
• Eco-initiatives related to material efficiency and recycling;
• Innovative initiatives to increase the efficiency, and greening, of business operations;
• Green jobs created (only in conjunction with another indicator)
Eligible applicants for Green Industry Innovation Bulgaria are:
• Project Promoters: Bulgarian enterprises (Small, Medium or Large)
• Project Partners: enterprises, research institutions, NGOs, organizations and clusters from Norway and Bulgaria
Partnership is not mandatory under Green Industry Innovation Programme Bulgaria, but donor partnership projects that demonstrate added value both to the Bulgarian and to the Norway entity are strongly encouraged and prioritized.
Funding volumes and intensities
The total budget available is € 2 million, with grants of minimum € 200‘000 and maximume € 500’000 for each project.
Maximum grant intensity available:
• 25% for Sofia and South-West region of Bulgaria
• 50% for the other 5 regions.
(20% bonus for small enterprises, 10 % bonus for medium sized enterprises)
Maximum grant intensity for Aid for Consultancy in favour of SMEs and Aid to SMEs for participation in fairs is 50%. Maximum grant intensity for Aid for research and development projects is 25 % of the eligible costs for experimental development. (20% bonus for small enterprises, or 10 % bonus for medium sized enterprises,) The maximum grant intensity for Investment aid enabling undertakings to go beyond Union standards for environmental protection or to increase the level of environmental protection in the absence of Union standards is 40%. (20% bonus for small enterprises, 10 % bonus for medium sized enterprises). The aid intensity may be increased by 15 % for investments located in assisted areas.
The maximum grant intensity for Investment Aid for Energy Efficiency Measures is 30%. (20% bonus for small enterprises, 10 % bonus for medium sized enterprises) . The aid intensity may be increased by 15 % for investments located in assisted areas.
Moreover, a fund of €12.000 is available for travel support, to stimulate bilateral project partnerships. The support will be provided as lump sum to cover travel costs and accommodation, but not more than € 1200 per entity.
The maximum implementation period for eligible projects is 10 months. The projects must be completed before 30th of April 2016.