Over 230 Innovative Projects Applied for the Mini Grants and Matching Grants Programe

Posted in: News- Sep 28, 2017

This year’s public call for the technological innovation programmes have met with 237 proposals for financing innovative projects: 137 for the Mini Grants and 100 for the Matching Grants Programe. The number of applications is 66.9% higher than for the last public call in 2013.

The total value of the proposed innovative projects is 44.8 million euros, 12.3 million for the Mini Grants and 32.5 million for the Matching Grants Programe. The largest number of projects came from the information and communication technology field (26.6%), software and applications (19.4%), the food processing industry and agriculture (12.2%), then electronics (8%), machinery and mechanical engineering (7.6%) and energy and energy efficiency (7.2%). Belgrade is the largest contributor (146), then Novi Sad (19), Niš (13), Kragujevac (9) and Čačak (6).

Ivan Rakonjac, managing director of the Innovation Fund said that the Fund’s programmes are effective and sustainable: “The companies we have supported so far have today over 480 employees more than before the projects we financed. These are highly qualified jobs and the turnover of these companies has increased by two and a half times. From the many proposed projects for this year’s call we can conclude that there is innovation potential in Serbia and that we have highly motivated entrepreneurs who are developing innovative technology”.

Nenad Popović, Minister of Innovation and Technical Development of the government of Serbia said that the Serbian government wants to encourage the development of innovation, so it will allocate a greater amount for this purpose in next year’s budget. “We see this as an important step for strengthening the competitiveness of our economy, the growth of exports and the creation of new jobs in the high tech sectors”, added minister Popović at the presentation of the statistics of the completed public call for the technological innovation support programmes.

From 2017 onwards, funding of 2.7 million euros for the Mini Grants and Matching Grants Programe will be provided from the budget of the Republic of Serbia, Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development, through the Project for Improving Competitiveness and Employment (funded by a loan agreement with the World Bank). The public call for Serbian companies to submit innovative project proposals lasted from June 1st to September 1st this year. From 2011 to 2016 the Fund gave financial support to 52 innovative projects funded by the EU to a value of 8.4 million euros.