BG16RFOP002-2.009 „Development of clusters in Bulgaria“
Directorate General "European Funds for Competitiveness" - Managing Authority of Operational Programme "Innovation and Competitiveness" 2014-2020 invites those wishing to submit project proposals under Priority Axis 2 „Entrepreneurship and capacity for growth of SMEs“, Investment Priority 2.2 „Capacity for growth of SMEs”, Specific Objective 2.2.: Increasing the productivity and the export potential of Bulgarian SMEs by ANNOUNCING a procedure for selection of projects: BG16RFOP002-2.009 „Development of clusters in Bulgaria“.
The main objective of the procedure is providing support for the cooperation and establishment of clusters in Bulgaria, capacity development and internationalization of already existing ones as a factor for increasing the competitiveness and business development.
The applicable state/ minimal aid regimes are „de minimis“ under Regulation (EC) № 1407/2013 under Component 1 „Establishment and support for organizational and administrative strengthening of the cluster“ and Component 2 „Cooperation, creating partnerships and internationalization“ and regional investment aid according to Art. 13 and Art. 14 of Regulation (EU) № 651/2014 under Component 3 „Development of shared infrastructure and know-how“.
Eligible under the procedure are projects, including the following activities:
Component 1: Establishment and support for organizational and administrative strengthening of the cluster
- Establishment and resource provision of the activity of the cluster administrative body - providing the necessary personnel for management and coordination of the cluster activities, resource provision, purchase of computer equipment for the needs of the cluster administrative body;
- Increasing the capacity of the administrative body of the cluster regarding management and coordination of the cluster - participation in seminars, trainings, conferences, information events, exchange of experience and best practices.
Component 2: Cooperation, creating partnerships and internationalization
- Supporting the development of the cluster and attracting new members:
– organizing and participating in events for the presentation of the cluster and its products / services, expanding and development of the cluster activity, attracting new customers and new cluster members and developing networks among cluster members;
– organizing and participating in specialized training in Bulgaria and abroad for increasing the capacity of the cluster for the creation of partnerships and internationalization.
- Promoting cluster marketing:
− developing a marketing strategy or a strategy for internationalization, in case the cluster has not developed such so far;
− consultancy services for entering new market, incl. research and information about targeted markets;
− promotion of the name (brand) of the cluster and its products/ services – preparation and printing of brochures and informational materials, development of websites and information databases about the activities of the cluster;
− participation of the cluster in national and international exhibitions and fairs;
− establishing and promoting cooperation with other clusters, including in other countries and building of transnational cluster relations;
− providing an expert in creating of partnerships and internationalization;
− acquisition of European cluster label, awarded by the European Secretariat for Cluster Analysis.
- Project publicity and visualization;
- Audit of the project.
Component 3: Development of shared infrastructure and know-how
- Acquisition of tangible fixed assets for common cluster activities - equipment for training rooms, training centers, testing laboratories, production centers and etc.;
- Acquisition of intangible fixed assets for common cluster activities – specialized software, patents, licenses, "know how", trademarks and etc.
The submission of the project proposal under the current procedure is carried out entirely electronically by completing a web based application form and submitting the application and accompanying documents via the Unified information system for management and monitoring of the EU Structural Instruments in Bulgaria (UMIS 2020) solely using a qualified electronic signature (QES), by module „Е-application“ at the following web address: https://eumis2020.government.bg.
Applicants may ask additional questions and request clarifications regarding their application up to 3 weeks before the deadline for submission of project proposals. Additional questions can be asked only by the e-mail shown below, clearly indicating the name of the procedure for the selection of projects:
E-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
The explanations given regarding the Terms for application can not contain opinion on the quality of a specific project proposal and are mandatory for all candidates.
The full package of documents (Requirements for Application, Requirements for Implementation and their Annexes /only in Bulgarian language/) under the procedure is published on the website of the Operational programme: www.opic.bg, as well as on the Single information portal for general information about the management of Structural Funds and Cohesion Fund of the European Union in Bulgaria: www.eufunds.bg.
According to the structure of the grant procedure, before submitting the project proposals to the MA, a categorization of the cluster is obligatory to be performed by Bulgarian Small and Medium Enterprises Promotion Agency (BSMEPA). The deadline for submission of documents for categorization to BSMEPA is 30/01/2017.
The procedure is with deadline for submission of project proposals to the MA: 5:30 p.m. on 28/04/2017.