Competitive, innovative, dynamically developing, offering good living conditions for the inhabitants – this is what is to be like by 2030. A large role in the implementation of this objective will be played by entrepreneurs, therefore from the funds of the Regional Operational Programme 2014-2020 as much as EUR 366.3 million will be allocated for the creation of conditions for the establishment and development of enterprises, increase in research and development activity, implementation of new products and services, as well as foreign expansion.


Building competitive advantages

The greatest chance for funding will be given to projects which, in their assumptions, will strengthen the so-called intelligent specialisations of the region, i.e. areas with the greatest development potential. Improvement of the quality of life, production of safe food, implementation of intelligent management systems or introduction of modern business services to the market are the four areas on which the main emphasis will be placed. The specified sectors result from the Regional Innovation Strategy to 2020 (RIS).

Innovation vouchers

Already from 31 December 2015 it will be possible to apply for vouchers for innovations (Measure 1.2 Research and development activity of enterprises). The pool of funds allocated for the competition is USD 21.3 million (EUR 5 million). Applications will be accepted in rounds until the planned limit of funds is exhausted. The support will cover undertakings consisting in the implementation of research or development works in cooperation with a scientific institution. Projects may concern the purchase of a service to develop or develop a new or improved product or service, as well as process changes. Companies operating on the market for up to two years will apply for vouchers with a maximum value of 50 thousand USD. Enterprises with a market seniority of more than two years may apply for funds of up to 100,000 USD.

Development of the enterprise sector in 2016

The first quarter is a time for entrepreneurs who have experience in conducting research and development works and want to engage in further projects of this type. In the second quarter, funds will be available for conducting experimental works and searching for development niches. While in the first case the compliance of the project with the areas of intelligent specialisation of the region will be required, in the context of experimental works it will not be necessary. Companies that plan to create or develop a R&D department should apply for funding in the third quarter of the year. This will also be the time to apply for funds for the introduction of innovative products and services to the market.

ROP WM means not only strengthening the innovative potential of companies, but also supporting the initial phase of enterprise development by business environment institutions (e.g. business incubators). The competition in this scope is planned for the third quarter. At the same time, it will be possible to apply for vouchers for consulting in the scope of running and developing a business. The end of the year will be devoted to calls for applications aimed at increasing foreign exports. Individual entrepreneurs and groups of companies will then be able to apply for co-financing for internationalisation of enterprises (e.g. through participation in foreign industry events).

OPO IN 2014-2020

For the years 2014-2020 is guaranteed over USD 8 billion (EUR 2.08 billion) of EU support, directed mainly to business, administration and the scientific sector. The maximum co-financing of projects will amount to 80 percent of the value of the investment. In 2016, 47 competitions for the total amount of USD 2.3 billion (EUR 543.5 million) will be announced. The Unit for Implementation of EU Programmes is responsible for spending the funds from the Regional Operational Programme.
The regulations and competition documentation are available on the website.