Interreg III is a Community initiative which aims to stimulate interregional cooperation in the EU between 2000-06. It is financed under the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
Community Initiative Programme INTERREG IIIA PL-SK 2004-2006
Interreg III is made up of 3 strands and has a total budget of 4,875 billion euro (1999 prices).
- Strand A: cross-border cooperation Cross-border cooperation between adjacent regions aims to develop cross-border social and economic centres through common development strategies.
- Strand B: transnational cooperation Transnational cooperation involving national, regional and local authorities aims to promote better integration within the Union through the formation of large groups of European regions.
- Strand C: interregional cooperation Interregional cooperation aims to improve the effectiveness of regional development policies and instruments through large-scale information exchange and sharing of experience (networks).
The Polish-Slovak Interreg III A programme has been prepared in line with the European Commission guidelines for the Interreg III Community Initiative of 28 April 2000 and in accord with the practical guide (issued on 14 March 2003) for preparing Interreg programmes resulting from the enlargement of the EU.
The Interreg III Initiative stems from the principle that political and administrative boundaries should not impede sustainable development and integration of the European territory. To this end, strand A of the initiative seeks to facilitate crossborder co-operation between neighbouring regions through joint strategies and common actions. In the case of the Polish-Slovak border area such co-operation is to be founded on the experiences gained during the previous joint programme for the area – the Phare CBC programme, as well as on common strategic documents for the border region.
The programme area consists of the following NUTS III regions
- on the Polish side of the border – bielsko-bialski, nowosądecki and krośnieńsko-przemyski subregions,
- on the Slovak part of the border – Žilina and Prešov counties.
Small projects of people to people type will be implemented within the Measure 2.3 (Support for local initiatives) of the Programme. Taking into account that large number of micro projects is anticipated, special Micro Project Facility has been designed in order to facilitate the operation of the programme by creating flexible structures and offering fast decision making process. This institution will replace the Small Project Fund that has operated under the Polish-Slovak Phare Cross Border Co-operation Program since 2000 and will use its experience and structures existing therein.
Micro Project Facility (MPF) is managed on the Polish side by three Euroregions: Karpacki,
Tatry and Beskidy and on the Slovak side by two Higher Territorial Units (HTU - in Zilina and Presov). These institutions are responsible for: training applicants, collecting projects, formal and technical assessment, monitoring the project implementation, verifying settlements of accounts, collecting and passing information regarding the project implementation.
In order to obtain support, projects must meet the following conditions:
- Only those projects which contribute to the improvement of the Polish-Slovak cross-border cooperation shall be supported;
- The applicant must belong to the category of final beneficiaries defined in the Programme Complement,
- The applicant must be located in the eligible area as specified in CIP;
- The eligible project must have a partnership nature, i.e., the applicant will indicate a partner on the other side of the border (a Polish or Slovak partner), who will participate in the implementation of the project.
- The partners (foreign and domestic) must meet the same criteria as the applicant.
- The duration of the project does not exceed 12 months.
The value of the ERDF support to the project must be between 2000 and 20000 EUR.