The “Balkan – Mediterranean 2014‐2020” is a new cooperation programme, deriving from the split of the “South East Europe 2007 – 2013”.
The programme brings together five (5) countries Bulgaria, Cyprus, Greece, Albania and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.
It is the first time ever that the European cooperation addresses the Balkan Peninsula and the Eastern Mediterranean Sea together, in a joint effort across maritime and terrestrial borders, to contribute to the “EU 2020” strategy, for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. The Balkan – Mediterranean Cooperation Programme is co‐financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) with 28.330.108 Euros and the total budget of the Programme, including national contribution, is 39.727.652 Euro.
The programme is built upon the following two Priority Axes:
Priority Axis 1: “Entrepreneurship & Innovation”
Priority Axis 2: “Environment”
Priority Axis 1 is dedicated to actions that foster the area’s entrepreneurship potential by encouraging SMEs’ cooperation and networking, clusters and clusters policies, new business models’ applications and in particular the ones promoting innovation, opens up new markets and support internationalisation.
Two Specific Objectives are established to better focus the above mentioned topics. The Specific Objective (SO 1.1) promotes entrepreneurship on the basis of new ideas and new types of business models. The second Specific Objective (SO 1.2) goes one step forward by facilitating the SMEs’ adjustment to the changing socioeconomic and policy/regulatory circumstances.
A third Specific Objective (SO 1.3) is established for transnational training schemes that can provide a powerful platform to address entrepreneurship skills. SO 1.3 along with the SMEs’ thematic support planned by “SO 1.1” and “SO 1.2” ensures an integrate, structured and inclusive approach to effectively address territorial competitiveness and skills’ gaps, to overcome markets’ fragmentation and foster business environment that could further unleash untapped cooperation potential.
The Priority Axis 2 of the “Balkan‐Mediterranean 2014‐2020” programme is built upon natural/cultural heritage and resources’ efficiency. The “Priority Axis 2” is further streamlined in two thematic Specific Objectives focusing on the one hand in natural ecosystems’ management (SO 2.1) and on the other hand in efficient resources’ management of the waste sector, the soil and the water sector (SO 2.2). These two thematic Specific Objectives (SO 2.1 and SO 2.2) are combined with a third one the “SO 2.3” aiming to develop skills for better environmental management and increase governance capacities.
The first Call for Proposals is expected at the end of the first half of 2015.