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  1. An institution, body, office or agency established by or based on the Treaty on European Union and the Treaties establishing the European Communities.

    All education and training facilities for people of different age groups.

    An intergovernmental organization having legal personality under public international law or a specialized agency established by such an international organization. An international organization, the majority of whose members are Member States or Associated Countries and whose main objective is to promote scientific and technological cooperation in Europe, is an International Organization of European Interest.

    A person with legal rights and obligations. Unlike a legal entity, a natural person does not have a legal act (e.g. association, limited liability company, etc.).

    An NPO is an institution or organization which, by virtue of its legal form, is not profit-oriented or which is required by law not to distribute profits to its shareholders or individual members. An NGO is a non-governmental, non-profit organization that does not represent business interests. Pursues a common purpose for the benefit of society.

    A partnership, corporation, person, or agency that is for-profit and not operated by the government.

    Any government or other public administration, including public advisory bodies, at the national, regional or local level.

    A research institution is a legal entity established as a non-profit organization whose main objective is to conduct research or technological development. A college/university is a legal entity recognized by its national education system as a university or college or secondary school. It may be a public or private institution.

    A microenterprise, a small or medium-sized enterprise (business) as defined in EU Recommendation 2003/361. To qualify as an SME for EU funding, an enterprise must meet certain conditions, including (a) fewer than 250 employees and (b) an annual turnover not exceeding EUR 50 million and/or an annual balance sheet total not exceeding EUR 43 million. These ceilings apply only to the figures for individual companies.

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  1. Governance, partnership: Projects aimed at increasing the application of multilevel and transnational or cross-border governance, designing and testing appropriate governance structures and mechanisms. Also cooperation between public institutions on any theme.

    Innovation capacity and awareness-raising: Actions that increase a person’s or organisation’s capacity for innovation (not innovation as such), and that establish the capacity to diffuse and apply innovation; projects that stimulate innovation in different areas and innovation capacities; strengthening and empowering of innovation networks.

    Institutional cooperation and cooperation networks: Projects working on the improvement of institutional cross-border co-operation and capacities, on renewing and simplifying administrative management through long term cooperation between institutions (e.g. Euregion), on establishing and sharing regional knowledge and intercultural understanding and cohesion. It also deals with cooperations between universities, health care facilities, schools and sports organisations, as well as with management and capacity building.

    Activities focussing on agricultural products, organic farming, horticulture, as well as forest management and wood products; furthermore the development of the food sector, food chains, organic food production, and seafood products and any topics related to animals and fishing.

    Agriculture and fisheries and forestry: Projects focussing on agricultural products (i.e. fruits, meat, olives, etc.), organic farming, horticulture, as well as forest management and wood products. Also the development of the agro-food sector, food chains, organic food production, and seafood products. Any topics related to animals (i.e. health, management) and fishing (i.e. sustainable fishery, aquaculture).

    Soil and air quality: Projects that deal with any topic against soil and air pollution, except water pollution, for example, reduction of soil and air contamination, pollution-management systems, but also prevention and eradication of soil erosion, new ways of improving air quality (also indoors) and soil/air knowledge in general.

    Climate change and biodiversity projects assisting mitigation and adaption to climate change and environmental impacts of climate change. Development of low carbon technologies and strategies, reduction of CO2 emissions from all sectors. Promotion of biodiversity, new instruments to enhance biodiversity and natural protection.

    Soil and air quality projects that deal with any topic against soil and air pollution, except water pollution, for example, reduction of soil and air contamination, pollution-management systems, but also prevention and eradication of soil erosion, new ways of improving air quality (also indoors) and soil/air knowledge in general.

    Water management projects about management and distribution of drinking water, integrated sustainable water management, monitoring systems for water supply and improving drinking water quality; also water treatment (wastewater), in particular, innovative technologies to improve wastewater, treatments in the purification of industrial and domestic wastewater and water reuse policies. Waterways, lakes and rivers: This deals with any topics on waterways, lakes and rivers, from improving water quality, protecting and developing of ecosystems or sustainable wetland management.

    Activities that protect, promote and enhance cultural and natural heritage, increase the attractiveness through preservation and valorisation of common cultural and natural heritage in a sustainable manner, and improve and develop cultural and natural heritage objects, services and products. Cultural heritage management, art and culture, (maritime) heritage routes, access to cultural and natural heritage. Also all topics on cultural services such as festivals, concerts, art workshops.

    Cultural heritage and arts projects that protect, promote and enhance cultural and natural heritage, increase the attractiveness through preservation and valorisation of common cultural and natural heritage in a sustainable manner, and improve and develop cultural and natural heritage objects, services and products. Cultural heritage management, art and culture, (maritime) heritage routes, access to cultural and natural heritage. Also all topics on cultural services such as festivals, concerts, art workshops.

    Tourism projects dealing with the promotion of natural assets, and the protection and development of natural heritage, as well as increasing the touristic attractiveness through the better use of natural, cultural and historical heritage. Also projects about improved tourist services/products, development of ecotourism models, tourism development strategies.

    Sustainable management of natural resources projects focussing on the protection, promotion and valorization, and sustainable management and conservation of natural areas (habitats, geo parks, protected areas, etc.). Also projects focussing on preserving and enhancing cultural and natural heritage and landscape, as well as protecting the marine environment.

    Projects on waste management (innovative services and strategies), ecological waste treatment, treatment techniques/systems; waste disposal and recycling (improvement of recycling, innovative recycling technologies, recovery of organic waste, repair & re-use centres and networks); also prevention of pollution and pollution control (ecological and circular economy, marine littering, etc.).

    Labour market and employment: creating employment opportunities and/or optimising jobs, academic (un)employment and job mobility, workforce attraction and improvement of employment conditions for different groups.

    SME and entrepreneurship: strengthening SME capacities, boosting entrepreneurial activities in different sectors and for different groups, supporting social entrepreneurship, creating business support/advisory systems for start-ups/spin-offs/incubators, improving the competitiveness of SMEs, and promoting new business processes.

    Community integration and common identity projects that build identity, create a more cohesive society, promote positive relations through an increased provision of shared spaces and services.

    Demographic change and immigration is about projects tackling major societal challenges like demographic change in different areas and migration, in particular, aging society (active aging, best agers, silver economy strategies) and related new public services (adaptation of key services and infrastructure), social and spatial segregation, and brain drain. Also all topics on migration (policy tools, strategic planning, integration).

    All projects where ICT has a significant role, including tailor-made ICT solutions in different fields, as well as digital innovation hubs, open data, Internet of Things; ICT access and connecting (remote) areas with digital infrastructure and services; services and applications for citizens (e-health, e-government, e-learning, e-inclusion, etc.); services and applications for companies (e-commerce, networking, digital transformation, etc.).

    This is about the mitigation and management of risks and disasters, and the anticipation and response capacity towards the actors regarding specific risks and management of natural disasters, for example, prevention of flood and drought hazards, forest fire, strong weather conditions, etc.. It is also about risk assessment and safety.

    Education and training projects on expanding educational opportunities, reducing barriers in the field of education, improving higher education and lifelong learning, training and labour mobility, educational networks, higher vocational education, common learning programmes.

    Topics on energy management, energy-saving methods, evaluating energy efficiency measurements, energy rehabilitation/efficiency in buildings / public infrastructure, promotion of energy efficiency, cooperation among experienced energy efficiency firms, institutions and local administrations, co-generation.

    Projects focussing on wind, solar, biomass, hydroelectric, geothermal and other renewable energy, increasing the production of sustainable renewable energy and improving research capacities in biomass. Also projects focussing on storage and management of renewable energy, new technologies, sustainable regional bioenergy policies and financial Instruments for investments on renewable energy.

    Social projects concerning people with disabilities and excluded groups; enhancement of the capacity of children, young people, women and elderly; creation of infrastructure to improve access for disabled people, integration of socially vulnerable people; innovate in the care of victims of gender violence, social inclusion of women, etc.

    This deals with the development of health and social services and improved accessibility and efficiency for different groups (elderly, children, etc.). It is also about new healthcare models and medical diagnosis and treatments (dementia, cancer, diabetes, etc.), hospitals, care management, and rare diseases, as well as improving wellbeing and promoting sports.

    Projects about (organised) crime, efficient and secure borders, such as enhancing the effectiveness of the police in the prevention of drug crimes, the development of safety services, or tackling security and organised crime issues.

    Activities related to:

    • Transport and mobility covering all sorts of transport (incl. urban transport) and mobility.
    • Improving transport connections dealing with traffic and/or transport connections, rehabiliation/modernisation, better connectivity, improving accessibility/connections, but also public transport.
    • Multimodal transport and logistics and freight transport focusing on using different means of transport, developing multimodal connections, optimising intermodal transport chains; offering multimodal logistics solutions and providing access to clean, efficient and multimodal transport corridors and hubs; establishing cooperation among logistic centres and developing multimodal mobility strategies.

    Activities related to:

    • urban development, such as planning and design of cities and urban areas, urban renewal, urban-rural links (climate, sustainable mobility, water efficiency, participation, sustainable land use, smart cities, public urban areas, regeneration)
    • regional planning and development, such as the implementation of regional development policies/instruments and programmes, sustainable land use management plans, integrated regional action plans, spatial planning, and marine protected area management.
    • rural and peripheral development, referring to remote, sparsely populated areas, rural community development, and rural economics, in particular access to remote areas and policies for rural areas.
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Call key data

Call for Full Project Proposals under the Territorial Strategy of the Interreg VI-A IPA Bulgaria North Macedonia Programme

Funding Program

Interreg Bulgaria-North Madedonia



30.07.2024 16:00

Funding rate


Call budget

€ 8,143,233.00

Estimated EU contribution per project

between € 500,000.00 and € 1,000,000.00

Link to the call

Link to the submission

Call content

short description

The current call is related to the applicants who have successfully passed the first phase and have received invitations to develop and submit full project proposals (FPP) within the framework of Programme Priority 3 “Integrated Development of the Cross-Border Region”.

Call objectives

The Specific objective is based on the following tourism-related fields of intervention:  

  • Mobility and connectivity, incl. alternative mobility
  • Branding and marketing for tourist products in the cross-border region
  • Employability in the tourism sector, reinforcement of the cultural - natural sites and tourism – environment links
  • Actions for reducing vulnerability of services in the tourism sector

Expected results

The non-exhaustive list of actions to be supported includes: 

  • Joint actions aimed at improving the knowledge capacity of the SMEs to operate in a greener, more digital and more competitive environment (acquiring new knowledge and skills, incl. access to external finances)
  • Joint solutions aimed at increasing the productive capacity of the SMEs to become greener, more digital and more competitive (technological modernization)
  • Actions aimed at building effective product development process (it encompasses all steps needed to take a product from concept to market availability) and reaching new markets (marketing, entrepreneurship, internationalization)
  • Joint actions aimed at developing all-season, integrated and resilient tourist products, accompanied by competitive branding and marketing practices, with the aim to untap the cross-border tourism potential by increasing the economic benefits of the sustainable use of its resources while prioritizing the protection of the environment
  • Actions aimed at rationalizing the use of tourist resources in the region, incl. development of new integrated regional tourist products; investments in infrastructure and facilities to support tourists; strengthening the links between natural and cultural sites; training of staff of tourist attractions; improving marketing practices and brands
  • Actions aimed at improving the mobility and connectivity of the transport and engineering infrastructure by a system of alternative mobility, including a grid of bicycle lanes, ‘dirt’ forest and country roads, and etc.
  • Actions aimed at elaborating and applying joint measures for reducing the vulnerability of services in the tourism sector to the effects of pandemic and epidemic situations

read more

Eligibility Criteria

Regions / countries for funding

Bulgaria (България ), North Macedonia (Северна Македонија)

eligible entities

Education and training institution, Non-Profit Organisation (NPO) / Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), Public Body (national, regional and local; incl. EGTCs), Research Institution incl. University, Small and medium-sized enterprise (SME)

Mandatory partnership


Project Partnership

Projects shall involve at least one Applicant from Bulgaria and one from North Macedonia.

Lead partners and project partners are required to be registered and operational within the programme area for a minimum of 3 years preceding the submission of the concept note. In cases where new partner/s become project partner/s to the FPP, this rule applies to them proportionally. Therefore, the new project partners are required to be registered and operational in the programme area for a minimum of 3 years before the date of submission of the respective concept note. In instances where a local/regional/national authority structure is unable to act as a legal entity, its legally established central organisation, shall serve as the project partner.

Project partners situated outside the programme area but within Bulgaria and Republic of North Macedonia may be eligible, provided they bring a clear benefit to the programme area and meet all eligibility criteria. However, their involvement is considered exceptional and must be duly justified.

Each applicant may participate as a Lead partner or a project partner in only one FPP.

The implementation of the project activities should take place in the Programme area. By exception (however excluding activities related to works and supply), activities outside the Programme area can be implemented in duly justified cases.

All partners are directly responsible for project implementation and are prohibited from acting as intermediaries or engaging in any form of contracting among themselves.

Mandatory cooperation criteria (joint development, joint implementation, joint staffing, joint financing) are fulfilled, i.e. ‘partners shall cooperate in the development and implementation of Interreg operations, as well as in the staffing or financing, or both, thereof.’

Maximum number of partners is not set, however, the relevancy of the proposed partnership is subject to quality assessment at this stage. Therefore, interested organisations to apply are advised to carefully consider and rationalise the setup of the project partnership to make sure there is no partner who lacks expertise needed to address the identified challenge of the project idea.

Eligibility of project partners:

  • Local/regional bodies and authorities (incl. regional structures of central public authorities and statutory bodies);
  • SMEs – stands for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises as defined in European Union law (EU recommendation 2003/361;
  • NGOs and other socio-economic partners;
  • Academic, research, training and cultural institutions
  • The Lead partner and the project partner/s responsible for the project investment/s cannot be altered.

other eligibility criteria

The Programme area is located in South East Europe and covers 5 NUTS III (or equivalent) territorial units, namely:

  • 2 districts from Bulgaria –Blagoevgrad and Kyustendil and
  • 3 regions from North Macedonia – North-East, East and South-East.

Additional criteria:

  • Objective of the concept note is not changed in the full project proposal
  • There is no change to the composition of partners between the concept note and the FPP. If there is a change to the composition of partners between the concept note and the FPP the following additional criteria apply:
    • The Lead partner is not changed between the concept note and the FPP
    • The withdrawal of project partner/s did not result in the withdrawal of project activities
    • There have been no changes to the partners responsible for implementing project investments
    • A change to the composition of partners contributing to Interreg indicators RCO84, RCO116 and RCR104 is suggested. If yes, new partners meet all eligibility criteria outlined in section 1.2.1 Section ‘Project partners’ from the application form (AF Part B, part C, part D).

Additional information


Arts & Culture, Cultural Heritage, Tourism, 
Competitiveness of Enterprises, Employment/Labour Market, SME & entrepreneurship, 
Mobility & Transport

Relevance for EU Macro-Region

EUSAIR - EU Strategy for the Adriatic and Ionian Region, EUSDR - EU Strategy for the Danube Region

UN Sustainable Development Goals (UN-SDGs)

project duration

between 12 and 24 months

Additional Information

The submission process for FPP and all accompanying documents, both mandatory and optional, occurs through JEMS. Applicants are required to transfer their concept notes to the FPP application form in their JEMS accounts, created during the application with project ideas. The deadline for submission is 30th of July 2024 17:00 EEST. All sections of the application form must be completed, and it is the applicant's responsibility to ensure compliance.

Detailed instructions for completing and submitting the entire package of the FPP can be found here

Furthermore, all annexes and attachments attached to the AF must be submitted in English. In cases where a document is translated into English from the original language, the true original copy should also be provided. Translated versions take precedence and are the ones considered for assessment or review of the entire FPP. The attached documents may be scanned signed versions or electronically signed (acknowledged only if accompanied by the respective signature certificate and the e-signature pertains to the legal representative of the project partner).

Applicants should attach in JEMS:

  • Annex 1 – Project Partnership Agreement;
  • Annex 2 – Project Partner Declaration (all project partners)
  • Annex 3 – Partnership and co-financing statement (all project partners)
  • Annex 4 - Declaration of e-mail address of the Lead Partner (only the Lead partner)
  • Annex 5 – SME Declaration (only SMEs)
  • Annex 6 – State Aide Declaration (all partners)
  • Annex 7 - Statement of Capacity and Compliance with the Principles for Investment (all partners foreseeing investments /works only or works and supply/)
  • Annex 8 – Climate proofing assessment (partners foreseeing investments)
  • Annex A7 Justification for expenditures planned as a total amount under Budget category 4 (all project partners with envisaged expenditures in BC4)
  • any relevant attachment, enabling the eligibility screening and the pre-contracting process. The list of these attachments is presented in sub-section Additional documents on the basis of which eligibility screening of the FPP is carried out in section 1.2.4 Additional documents supporting the full project proposals in the call document.


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