What We Provide:
We offer a vast range of services when it comes to funding. Primarily, we will inform you on all types of funding that are available at the national and European levels. Many of these funding programmes we have made use of ourselves through projects which we have been involved in throughout the years. After we have provided you with all the available opportunities, we assist in matching the right funds for your project. This is determined by looking at the aims of the project, which sector/s it affects and the perceived outcomes. We take a bottom-up, hands-on approach by looking through business by business, sector by sector. Hence, we rely on an inclusive system that is based on brainstorming and ideation. Since there are many opportunities that are open to you, we assist in filtering through the numbers to find the perfect fit.
Once we have found the ideal funding programme for you, our involvement does not stop. We provide assistance in preparation to receive funding. Thereby, we can contribute to the reporting, documentation as well as presentations that must be shown to either the national or European authorities. Apart from this, we will also help you in building your own consortium; comprising researchers, academics, consultants and businesses alike. In this regard, we have relative experience not just of being partners but also leaders of consortia. We have hosted meetings amongst partners, made sure that everyone gets to voice their concerns, and overseen progress throughout all stages of the project. Therefore, we can impart our knowledge and wisdom with you when it comes to building and running your own consortia.
Centralised funds are funding programmes which are administered by the EU institutions. There is no limit to the country or region to which these funds can apply, provided that they are within the European Union. Such an initiative helps improve the quality of collaboration between Member States as well as with associated countries. Apart from supporting Member States, centralised funds address issues right down to the local context and so can be used to help cities and regions develop. However, they cannot be used for infrastructural works. Centralised funds target diverse areas, and are open to many sectors; including technology, education, science, health, business, development, as well as social issues. These funds are widely available. So, it is ultimately your decision whether you would like to opt in or not.
Decentralised funds are administered in the Member State, and are decided as a result of a collaboration between all EU countries as part of a 7-year budget. Currently, all funding comes from the 2014-2020 EU budget. There are many different types of programmes and initiatives falling under this budget, that could be of value to you.
The European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) carries the responsibility of strengthening economic and social cohesion by reducing the rate of inequality amongst European regions. Erasing inequality is a large-scale task and so the ERDF particularly focuses on the areas of research and innovation, the development of a digital agenda, support for SMEs and maintaining a low-carbon economy.
Similarly, the European Social Fund (ESF) tackles the issues of poverty and inequality throughout the EU. However, its role is to promote employment and social inclusion. It does so by supporting the Youth Employment Initiative (YEI). This helps youths who are not in education, training or employment due to long-term unemployment or inactivity. Therefore, the ESF and YEI aim to reform both the educational sector and the labour market by providing opportunities such as traineeships, apprenticeships and higher education to unemployed youths.
For each budget term, the Cohesion Fund (CF) is available to a number of Member States; Malta is currently receiving funds for the 2014-2020 period. Specifically, it is aimed at Member States where the national income per inhabitant is less than that of the EU average. So, just like the ERDF and ESF, the Cohesion Fund addresses economic and social inequalities. Yet, it is also in charge of the promotion of sustainable development in the areas of energy and transport.
The European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) is another funding programme that is open to all Member States. It is concerned with European policies which affect rural development, and so much of its work is focused on the promotion of rural communities. During the 2014-2020 budget term, the EAFRD is increasing the competitiveness of the agricultural sector, maintaining sustainable management over natural resources, and creating employment opportunities within rural industries.
The European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) is the funding programme on the European maritime and fisheries policies for the 2014-2020 budget. Its main roles are to promote the practice of sustainable fishing and support the maritime industries. Thereby, the EMFF provides funding to projects with these specific goals; particularly, if they also intend to create new jobs and improve the quality of living for those already working in the fisheries sector.
Despite the amount of funding available, there is a difficulty of total absorption by many countries. Part of the problem is that there is a lack of spending plans which are in the way of effective use of funding opportunities. The n+2/n+3 rules by the European Commission are aimed at improving the use of funds by ensuring that there is an efficient process for funding projects that are ready to be implemented. This is through the enforcement of a stronger budgetary discipline.
We are promoting and raising awareness of these funding opportunities so as for them to be utilised. Many countries are slow to implement programmes, so much so that by 2019, only an average of 40% has been spent from the budget. Since there is a substantial amount of funding available, you are entitled to make use of such opportunities. We are here to inform you and provide you with the best options possible.