Who is eligible for European Union funding?

By Saalax Saciid Sabriye

Funding is overseen as per strict standards to guarantee that there is tight control over how funds are utilized and that the money spent in a transparent, accountable 7manner. The European Union provides funding for broad ranges of programmes and projects which covering different areas for instance, humanitarian aid, research and development, nongovernmental organizations, agriculture and rural development, maritime and fisheries policies, regional and urban development, employment and social inclusion.

So what do they have in common all this NGO’s, farmer, researcher, and young people, fisheries?  All these programs are all eligible for European Union funding, which is available in number of different fields, whether it is agriculture and rural development, employment and social inclusion, urban and regional development, maritime affairs and fisheries, humanitarian aid and etc.

The financial aid and packages vary from one area to the next. But there are three common principles, the subsidies supplement other funding: the European Union will not fund 100% of a project. Their objective of these programs should not to create profit for the beneficiary but just to help them strike a financial balance. And, subsidies cannot be granted retroactively for activities that have already been finished. More than three quarters of the European Union budget is managed jointly with national and regional authorities via five large structural and investment funds.

These are in line with the European Union’s Europe 2014 to 2020 strategy for growth, the European regional development funds 199.4 billion euro, the European social fund: 88, 8 billion euro, the European agricultural funds for rural development: 85 billion euro, the European maritime and fisheries fund: 6, 4 billion euro, and the cohesion funds, whose aim is the economic convergence of regions within the EU.

The European parliament debates and votes on all these budgets, the national and regional authorities in charge of managing the funds can be called on to advise on maximizing their use. The European Union itself manages other funds directly. Grants from these go directly to specific projects or organizations according to the EU’s policies, and this includes areas such as agriculture, economy, the youth to benefit from these grants, applicants have to answer calls for proposals. And finally, there is also micro financing. Self employed people and businesses with fewer than 10 employees can benefit from microcredit that is loans of up to 25.000 Euros

As a group, the 28 EU commissioners have the last political obligation regarding guaranteeing that European Union funds are really spend properly. But since the greater part of the funding is managed within the beneficiary countries, duty regarding for directing checks and also yearly reviews lies with national governments.

More than 76% of the EU budget is controlled in partnership with national and regional authorities through a system of shared administration, to a great extend though five major funds the structural and also investment funds. Altogether, these help to actualize the Europe 2020 strategy.

European regional development fund. 

European regional development funds goals to fortify economic and social cohesive in the EU by adjusting irregular characteristics between it is regions. A European regional development fund focuses its focuses on a few key needs regions. This is known as topical concentration. The digital agenda, innovation and research, the low carbon economy, support and small medium enterprises.

The European regional development funds resources allotted to these priorities will rely upon the class of the region. The European regional development fund allocates a total of 199, 4 billion euro. At more developed districts, at least 80% of the funds must focus on at least two of these priorities. And in transition regions this consideration is for 60% of the funds. And 50% have less developed regions. The European regional development funds likewise gives specific regard for particular regional characteristics. European regional development funds activity is intended to reduce economic problems, social issues, and environmental problems in urban zones, with a unique spotlight on supportable urban improvement.

European social fund.

European social funds invests mostly in people, with an attention to developing of education and employment opportunities that across EU. It additionally intended to enhance the situation of the circumstances of the most vulnerable people at risk of poverty. And the European social funds investments cover all European Union regions. So more than 88, 8 billion euro is reserved for human capital investment in member states which between the 2014to2020, with an additional of in any event of 3.2 billion euro apportioned to the youth employment initiatives.

For the 2014to2020 period, the European social funds will focus on around four of the cohesive policies topical objectives: investing in education and skills and lifelong learning, promoting social inclusion and combating poverty, advancing work and supporting labour mobility, upgrading institutional capacity and an effective public administration. More than 20% of European social funds will be focused on activities enhancing social inclusion combating poverty. And this is knows as topical focus.

Cohesion fund.

A cohesion fund is goal for a member states whose gross national income per inhabitant is under 90% of the European Union average. It plans to decrease social disparities and economic to advance continuous development. For the 2014to 2010 period, the cohesion funds concerns 15 EU member countries such as Cyprus, Bulgaria, Croatia, Hungary, Czech Republic, Malta, Poland, Romania, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Portugal, Greece, Estonia.

The cohesion fund dispenses a sum of 63, 4 billion euro to activity under the fallowing types. Trans European transport systems, especially greatest important projects of European interests as distinguished by the European Union. The cohesive fund will bolster the infrastructure programs under the connecting Europe facility. The cohesive funds can also bolster the programs which related to transport and energy, use of developing rail transport, renewable energy, strengthening public transport and etc.

The financial assistance of cohesion fund can be suspended by a council decision which taken by qualified majority if a member of states demonstrate excessive public deficit and also if it has not resolved the situation or has not taken appropriate action to do so.

European agricultural fund and rural development.

The European Union’s rural development policy supports the rural areas of the European Union to meet the extensive variety of economic, social challenges and environmental of 21 century. Rural development procedures share various objectives with other European structure and also investment funds. There are 118 different rural development programs in 28 member countries for this period, with 20 national programmes and eight members opting to have two or more regional programmes. The rural development priority are separated in two focus regions, for instances, the need of recourse efficiency includes focus regions, decreasing greenhouse gas and also ammonia emissions from agriculture and also fostering carbon conservation and sequestration in fostering and agriculture.

European maritime and fisheries fund.

The common fisheries policy is a set up of principles for controlling European fishing fleets and for saving or protecting fish stocks. Intended to deal with a typical resource, and it gives all European fishing fleets equal access to European union waters and fishing grounds and allows fishermen to compete fairly. The common fisheries was first introduced in 1970’s and went through successive updates, the most recent of which effect on 1 January 2014.

The common fisheries policy plans to guarantee that aquaculture and fishing are economically, environmentally and socially sustainable that they give a source of health food for all European Union citizens. It is aim is probably encourage a dynamic fishing industry and guarantee that a fair standard of living for all fishing communities. The common fisheries policy has four main important policies such as, A: international policy, B: fisheries management, C: marketing and trade policy. D: funding of the policy. The common fisheries policy includes rules on stakeholders’ involvement and aquaculture.

Finally, the European Union manages some other funds directly, Grants from these go directly to specific projects or organizations according to the EU’s policies, and this includes areas such as agriculture, economy, the youth to benefit from these grants, applicants have to answer calls for proposals. And contracts issued by the European union institutions in order to   buy in services, works, and goods that they need for their operations such as training, IT equipments, studies, and also conference organizations. small businesses can apply for funding and can obtain European union funds through the grants, loans and guarantees, grants provides direct support, for while other funding is available through programmes managed nationally.

Nongovernmental and society organizations can apply for funding and may be eligible for funding, and provided they are active in European Union policy areas and on non profit basis. Young people can also apply for funding, and there are two main types of funding, A: education and training: study opportunities through Erasmus, and support for pupils nearing the end of secondary education, and vocational training in another country. B: youth co funding of projects which also encourage civic involvement, a broader multicultural outlook, and volunteer work.

Farmers and rural businesses can apply for funding; most farmers in the European Union are eligible for direct income support payments. Farmers also can receive money which based on the amount of land that they hold again in return for employing eco friendly farming methods that preserve biodiversity, water and soil quality which keep emissions low.

European Union also helps farmers train in new techniques and restructures of their farms. It is also applied more broadly to improve life in rural areas, by creating jobs and also providing basic services. In addition, under rural development, young farmers can also benefit from specific support for setting up their business as well as from higher support rates for investment that they make in the business.

So as i mentioned before, young people, small and medium sized businesses, NGO’s programmes, researchers and innovation programmes, farmers, fisheries, and public bodies  are all eligible for EU funding where their areas of activity related to the European union policies.

Prepared by: Sadia Ali Ismail.

                                                                            Student of Istanbul Aydin University.