Co-financed Grants for Technology Extension

Objectives 

The goal of the Instrument is to enhance the adoption and adaptation of innovative, advanced technologies, know-how and technology processes in small and medium sized enterprises (hereinafter: “SMEs”). The aim is to improve the technological capabilities of existing industries and businesses by bridging the gap between the knowledge-stock already available globally and local industries. The instrument is expected to have sectoral impact and long-term positive contribution to increasing competitiveness.

The financing granted through this Instrument is intended to support adoption and adaptation of innovative and advanced technologies, and improvement in business processes in the Macedonian SMEs. The technology extension should be targeted towards a group of SMEs with a goal of improving their productivity and competitiveness and achieving sectorial impact

The support may be granted for two phases of the technology extension process: Phase 1 – Diagnostics and Improvement Plan; and Phase 2 – Implementation of Improvement Plan. In case of already existing Diagnostics and Improvement Plan, the applicant may apply for Phase 2 only.

Through this Instrument the Fund for Innovations and Technology Development shall provide financing of up to 50% (fifty percent) of the total budget of the project in maximum amount of EUR 500,000.00 (five hundred thousand Euros) cumulative for both phases.

The remaining amount of the total budget of the project should be provided by the Applicant. The funds received from the Fund pursuant to any other grounds or any other form of state aid shall not be acceptable as co-financing of the Applicant.

For projects consisting of only Phase 2 – Implementation of Improvement Plan, the budget and cofinancing ceilings set in paragraph 1of this Article shall apply for the entire duration of the project.

or projects consisting of Phase 1 – Diagnostics and Improvement Plan; and Phase 2 – Implementation of Improvement Plan, the budget for implementation of the Phase 1 may be fully covered by the Fund. The financial contribution of the Fund for Phase 1 may not exceed 10% of the Fund’s cofinancing allowed for the entire project i.e. may not exceed a maximum amount of EUR 50,000.00 (fifty thousand Euros). The beneficiary will be responsible for any additional expenses under the Phase 1.

For projects consisting of both phases, the funding of Phase 2 shall be conditioned on a prior approval by the Committee for Approval of Investments (herein: CAI) of the delivered Diagnostics and Improvement Plan, and the Phase 1 Implementation Report.

The co-financing by the Fund for the total budget of the project (for Phase 1 and Phase 2 cumulatively) may not exceed the co-financing ceilings set in paragraph 1of this Article.

The co-financing by the Fund intended for the implementation of the Improvement Plan must not exceed 200,000.00 Euros (two hundred thousand Euros) per individual end user (SME).

The eligibility criteria that the applicant has to fulfil are:

  • to be a legal entity registered in the Central Registry of the Republic of Macedonia;
  • to be a legal entity established in accordance with the Law on Associations and Foundations or established in accordance with the Law on Trade Companies or established in accordance with the Law on Chambers of Commerce which are acting as cluster, chamber of commerce, or business association;
  • to have at least 50.1% Macedonian founders / owners.

The eligibility criteria that the implementing team of the applicant should fulfil are:

Project manager:

  • Experience in managing large scale projects with budget exceeding EUR 200.000 (two hundred thousand Euros);
  • Experience in managing projects involving the private sector.

Project team:

For Phase I (if applicable):

  • At least one team member with experience of conducting minimum 3 (three) technology extension diagnostics (in accordance to the provisions in Article 3 of this Rulebook) out of which at least 1 (one) is on multiple SMEs in the specific field most relevant for the project proposal. For Phase II:
  • At least one team member with minimum 5 (five) years of professional experience in providing services in the specific field for the private sector;
  • At least one team member with professional experience in providing services in the specific field to at least 5 (five) SMEs.

Eligibility Criteria of Final Beneficiary(ies) 

All industries are eligible for funding under this Instrument.

The final beneficiaries are SMEs to which technology extension is targeted.

The eligibility criteria for each final beneficiary are:

  • to be an enterprise established in accordance with the Law on Trade Companies and registered in the Central Registry of the Republic of Macedonia,
  •  to be in ownership of a natural person/s and/or micro, small or medium sized enterprise/s (with a Macedonian ownership structure of 50,1% or more), and/or a higher education, i.e. scientific-research institution/s (of up to 20% ownership in the final beneficiary),
  • to not have accumulated over EUR 200,000.00 (two hundred thousand Euros) aid of minor importance in the last three fiscal years, including the amount requested from the Fund in accordance with the Law on State Aid and the Regulation on the Conditions and Procedures for Granting Aid of Minor importance (de minimis), -
  • да нема акумулирано повеќе од 100.000,00 евра (сто илјади евра) помош од мало значење во период од три години, вклучувајќи го и износот што го бара Фондот, ако претпријатието е активно во секторот за патен транспорт, согласно Законот за државна помош и Уредбата за условите и постапката за доделување на помош од мало значење (de minimis),
  • to not be in difficulty (an enterprise in difficulty is an enterprise that is unable to meet its obligations from its own resources or funds that it can obtain from its owner/ shareholders or creditors, to end losses which without outside intervention of providers of aid, will certainly lead to short-term and long-term cessation of operations of the enterprise), - to not be engaged in coal production.