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GRA - UK Company Grants Resource - Advertising by Google
European Grants & Funding
As a member state the UK is able to share additional resources provided by the EU, which complement those government initiatives already in place. For employers these are broadly similar to the UK Government's own schemes, or those it administers on behalf of the EU.
These comprise financial support for capital investment,
aid for research & development, and additionally schemes with long
term aims to improve local infrastructure, training, and employment opportunities.
(Initiatives are also aimed at certain non manufacturing or commercial
sectors, for example arts, media, cultural and architectural heritage,
social programs, and sport, but these are presently beyond the scope of
SUBSIDIARITY It should be noted that
the principle of subsidiarity applies to the relationship between member
states and the EU, so that if an objective can be reached at a lower level,
a higher authority may not intervene. Therefore despite the belief that
there are many 'Euro-grants' available, in reality unless the circumstances
match a very specific criteria this is often not the case.
EUROPEAN REGIONAL DEVELOPMENT FUND (ERDF) assists less favoured regions and concentrates on productive investment, infrastructure, and Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) development grants covering capital investment and innovation such as EGS, AIG, IFG and SMART are all part financed by the ERDF, although administered by UK Government, Welsh Assembly Government or Scottish Parliament.
EUROPEAN STEEL AND COAL COMMUNITY (ECSC) provides aid through soft loans with the aim of increasing efficiency in the coal and steel industries and mitigating the effects of industrial restructuring in coal and steel areas.
FURTHER HELP FOR SME's
The EU regards Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (companies usually employing under 250 employees and less than 25% owned by an other organisation) as a great source of employment generation with currently 63% of the community workforce employed by SME's. European Union support for SME's is given by:
BUSINESS CO-OPERATION NETWORK (BC-NET) a computerised network, which seeks to put SME's in touch with a business in other member states for the purpose of industrial, commercial, technical, R&D or financial partnership.
EURO INFO CENTRES (EIC's) hold more detailed information on all European matters. Their aim is to meet industry's information requirements on EU issues, to assist and advise with business participation in EU activities, and to create a network of partners providing information about national and local regulations of interest to companies.
BUSINESS AND INNOVATION CENTRES (BIC) provide basic business support services and business/management training. They provide support for selected projects in starting up new businesses and developing existing SME's. Topics covered include technical approval, marketing strategy, business appraisal, and development of business skills.
RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT is encouraged in required areas of activity by those who already engage in R & D on a full time basis, research organisations and higher education institutes, as well as by giving incentives to manufacturers and other businesses to become involved. This is achieved through the Fifth Framework Program (FP5).
EUREKA is another European initiative which aims to facilitate collaborative R&D projects between European companies, research and technology organisations and higher education institutions. It is designed to complement the EU's R&D programs. Eureka projects benefit from enhanced project status, Europe-wide publicity, partner finding networks, and contacts with UK Government.
COST is an ongoing vehicle for technological
collaboration enabling participants to undertake research in areas of
common interest and to share the total results. The principle behind joining
a program is the mutual benefit to be gained, the projects are self funded.