On Monday, 21 March 2022, the Conference on the opening of the Third Call for Proposals for the Serbia-Montenegro Cross-Border Cooperation Programme was organised at the Regional Development Innovation Startup Center in Priboj.
The event was organized with an aim to promote the Third Call for Proposals, and the hybrid format of the conference enabled the general public, through direct monitoring, to present both the Program and the projects implemented within the Second Call.
On behalf of the Municipality of Priboj, as the host of the event, Lazar Rvović, Mayor of the Municipality of Priboj, addressed participants, emphasizing the contribution of European Union funds in the Priboj area through the project “Rehabilitation of illegal waste on the river Lim” and the project “Misterious ways of faith from Lim to Zeta“ which is ongoing”. Those are good examples of moving forward with even better and bigger projects. We have already established good cooperation with the border municipality of Pljevlja and especially with the municipality of Bijelo Polje, because we have a common point of connection, and that is the river Lim “- Rvović pointed out.
The ceremony was opened by the Assistant Minister for European Integration of the Republic of Serbia, Mihajilo Dasic, who on this occasion emphasized the importance of good neighborly relations and cooperation in implementing EU-funded projects in the border areas of Montenegro and Serbia, but also European integration in general. “Cooperation between Montenegro and Serbia in terms of cross-border cooperation began in 2007 and we are currently implementing the second generation of this program through the program for the IPA financial perspective 2014-2020. Till today, within this cooperation, 52 projects with a total value of about 10 million euros have been financed. The whole spectrum of activities in the field of environmental protection, agriculture, economic development, social and health care, culture and entrepreneurship development in the cross-border region of Montenegro and Serbia were financed. We hope that there will be even more successful project applicants in the future, given that the European Union recognizes the importance and necessity of supporting candidate and potential candidate countries on the path to full EU membership. 3.4 million euros of EU grants have been allocated for this Call, and in addition we will try to increase the amount of funds that will be allocated for the next Calls. ” – Dasic pointed out.
On behalf of the Government of Montenegro, European Integration Office, the Deputy Chief Negotiator – National IPA Coordinator Bojan Vujović addressed the audience and stated: “I would like to emphasize that we are pleased that cooperation within this Program will continue through a new program perspective for period 2021-2027, within which an additional 8.4 million euros have been allocated for projects in the cross-border area that will provide additional incentives for employment, labor mobility, social and cultural inclusion, and tourism development, while protecting and promoting cultural and natural heritage. The fact that the new program will be implemented in indirect management confirms that our two countries have proven that they have the capacity needed for quality management of EU funds, which will be further improved in the coming period. ”
At the end of the introductory speeches, Mr. Marko Jovanović, Assistant Minister of Finance, on behalf of the Sector for Contracting and Financing Programs from European Union Funds, referred to information that is important for applicants. “The call was published on March 3, and the deadline for submitting project proposals is June 1, 2022. The indicative budget is 3,412,000 euros.
The general objective of this call is to contribute to the economic, social and territorial development of the program area by encouraging integration, joint development and the use of potentials and opportunities to make the area attractive for living and working. The specific objectives, the results of which applications should contribute are the following: 1. Increasing employability and employment opportunities through the result of improved knowledge, skills and competencies, as well as work experience of unemployed and employed persons to better adapt to labor market needs and potentials for employment in desired sectors; 2. Improvement of waste management and wastewater treatment through the result of improved capacities of municipalities and public utility companies for efficient and effective waste and wastewater management and 3. Improving the capacity to use the tourism potential of the program area, which aims to improve common tourism products. ” Jovanovic pointed out.
After the introductory part, Živko Kolašinac, Head of the Joint Technical Secretariat for the Serbia-Montenegro Cross-border Cooperation Programme, presented the ongoing projects within the Second Call for this Program.
At the very end of the event, potential beneficiaries were invited to follow the Information Session and the Partner Search Forum, which will be organized on Wednesday, 23 March 2022.