The Fund for Innovation and Technology Development today announced the first public competition for 2023, from which total of 5,060,000 euros are available for support of domestic companies, through the public competition for co-financed grants to micro, small and medium-sized companies for technological development and accelerated economic growth.
The purpose of the competition is to support domestic companies to create conditions for overcoming the consequences of the economic crisis, to achieve accelerated growth, to increase competitiveness in international markets and resistance to pandemic and climate crises, through the introduction of new, innovative, advanced, “green” and digital technologies for their transformation.
Regarding what activities we support with this public competition, the list is not limiting and it is available on the website of the Fund, some of them are: procurement and introduction of new, innovative, advanced, green and digital technologies for the transformation of production and business processes, development and introduction of new more ecological processes and standards for production and work, improvement of productivity and efficiency of production and/or business processes.
“In the past years, we were faced with two major crises, the pandemic and the economic crisis, which represented a great challenge for companies to survive this period. With this call, we are helping companies to overcome the consequences of the crisis more quickly and effectively and to continue their path to the market. Through the instrument Co-financed grants for technological development for accelerated economic growth, we have so far supported over 200 projects with a total investment volume of over 18 million euros, which implies direct support for investment projects of companies, technological development, development of innovations and entrepreneurship in the country. I encourage all micro, small and medium-sized enterprises to take advantage of the opportunity offered by the Fund and to apply to this competition” said Festim Halili, director of the Fund for Innovation and Technology Development.
„The Fund continues to be a leading institution that maximally supports all micro, small, medium, start-up and spin-off companies in the country, as well as a true partner in the entire process from the beginning of a business idea to starting your own business. So far, the Fund has supported over 800 projects with a total volume of over 100 million euros in joint investments. But the Fund does not stop there, we continue to work actively in the direction of creating favorable conditions for the development of successful entrepreneurial stories that will be a true example and pride of our country” said Festim Halili, director of the Fund for Innovation and Technology Development.
The Fund provides financial support for micro enterprises up to 70 percent of the total budget of the project, but not more than 2.5 million denars, for small enterprises up to 70 percent, but not more than 5 million denars, and for medium enterprises up to 60 percent, but not more than 10 million denars. The applicant provides its own co-financing of 30% for micro and small enterprises, that is, up to 40% for medium-sized enterprises from the total budget of the project. With this call, FITD also offers support to private healthcare facilities.
Gross salaries for employees, costs for technical support, research, development, digitization, procurement and rental of equipment, software, ICT tools or raw materials, as well as costs related to the implementation of the company’s technological development plan will be considered as eligible costs.
The return of the financial support granted by the Fund is carried out at a rate of 7.5% of the operating profit of the beneficiary, until the realization of a return of 105% of the amount paid by the Fund or for a period of 5 years after the completion of the project, in depending on which condition is met first.
Part of the conditions that the applicant must fulfill are: that the applicant is a trading company or a private health institution, that the applicant is not connected to another company or PHI whose annual revenues exceed 10 million euros and that the average number of employees does not exceed 250 from the previous fiscal year years, that there are no overdue and outstanding obligations with a delay of more than 90 days to financial institutions, and that it meets the requirements of the Law on Control of State Aid and that it has not received financial aid from another state institution for the same project.
When evaluating projects, the criteria of impact on economic development (45 points) brings the highest number of points, then technological progress and degree of digitization (35 points) and the quality of the project and the capacity of the project team will be evaluated with 10 points each from the total score. Companies that have female managers and/or owners, projects from less developed regions and companies that have included in the project team at least one assistant professor, university associate or full professor and/or doctoral student who will be involved in the project will have priority in evaluating the projects. The goal is to encourage female entrepreneurship as well as balanced regional development.
Regarding the evaluation and selection procedure within this public competition, the received project proposals will be directly evaluated by domestic experts from 22 areas of expertise. Projects that receive a score of at least 51 points move to the next stage. Projects will be reviewed by the Committee for Approval of Investment, which is an independent body composed of five international experts.
The public competition for co-financed grants to micro, small and medium-sized companies for technological development for accelerated economic growth is open until 05.05.2023, until 14:00, and companies can apply electronically. More information about the call is available at: https://fitr.mk/јавен-конкурс-за-кофинансирани-грант/, or write us at: firstname.lastname@example.org