Frequently Asked Questions
Active CfPs questions and answers
Programme’s answers to questions regarding documents under public consultation
General Questions and Answers
1. Are all activities related to communication supposed to be included in the Work Package Communication?
Only activities related to the promotion of the project (opening and closing conferences, promotional materials, website, publication, etc.) shall be included in the Work Package Communication. Other types of activities, related to the implementation of the project such as of preparation of manuals and other printed materials which are in connection with the professional content of the project (that contribute to the accomplishment of the project’s output indicators) shall be included in the Work Package Implementation.
2. Is it mandatory that all the fields in the eMS application form to be filled in? What happens if certain fields remain empty?
In case some of the fields in the eMS application form are not relevant for the project, it shall be mentioned accordingly. The incompletion of relevant fields can lead to lower score or to rejection in the assessment phase.
3. What is the solution/How do I proceed if after the submission of the application I want to modify it and the submission period hasn’t expired, yet?
In this case an official request for the reverse of the application must be sent to the firstname.lastname@example.org e-mail address. Please be aware that in such case, the application has to be submitted again within the application period of the relevant Call for proposal.
4. What are net revenues? Are net revenues eligible?
According to Article 61 CPR (EU Regulation No. 1303/2013) “net revenue means cash in-flows directly paid by users for the goods and services provided by the operation, such as charges borne directly by the users for the use of infrastructure, sale or rent of land or buildings, or payments for services less any operating costs and replacement costs of short-life equipment incurred during the corresponding period.” Net-revenues are not eligible.
5. What types of documents have to be included in the Application dossier?
The applicants must prepare the original Application dossier, containing all the Annexes and other relevant supporting documents. The complete Application package shall be page numbered continuously and a table of content shall be attached to it, clearly indicating the page numbers. The first and last page number of each Annex should be specified in the table of content. Please consult Annex V.9. Table of Content. The Annexes of each partner will be signed and stamped by the relevant partner. The dossier shall be held at the Lead Applicant’s premises.
6. Should the Application form and the other Annexes be signed and attached?
The Application Form shall be filled in online, than printed, stamped and signed by the legal representative of the Lead Applicant, and shall have attached all the supporting documents from the original dossier (see the previous Q&A). The whole package will be scanned and uploaded into the eMS system. The electronic eMS version of the Applications will prevail in terms of content, in case any technical error occurs.
7. Is it mandatory to select/tick “Budget Flat Rate Office” in the project partner budget?
In case the project includes staff costs it is mandatory to select the Budget Flat Rate Office box, in order to add Office and Administration Costs to your project, since within our Programme these costs are calculated based on 15% Flat Rate from Staff Cost.
8. Where should activities and the budget related to the Full Application of a Flagship project be mentioned within the Concept Note phase?
When filling in your Concept Note Application Form in the eMS the activities in the Work Packages and the partners’ budget shall refer only to the Concept Note’s activities. The budget related to the Full Application Form will be detailed in the annex called” Total project estimated budget”.
9. What are the deliverables within the eMS Application Form?
Deliverables are materials/physical results of the activities (reports, studies, equipment, investment, promotional materials, etc.) that can be quantified and their delivery date estimated.
10. Is there any limitation to management costs?
The management costs (staff costs and/or externalized services for project management) shall not exceed 10% of total eligible project costs.
11. When should the ‘Partnership Agreement’ be attached, in the submission phase of the project, or in the contracting phase of the Subsidy contract’?
The partners will need to sign the Partnership Agreement before the Lead Beneficiary will be in the position of signing the Subsidy contract with the MA. The Partnership Agreement is a mandatory document only in the contracting phase.
12. Is the translation of the Feasibility Study in English mandatory, in order to insure the eligibility of the submitted application?
The translation of the Feasibility Study in English is compulsory.
13. How can the state contribution field be created in the eMS Application Form?
After logging into the system, in the Define Contribution section of the budget, by clicking on the “Create partner contribution” button a new field, called “State Contribution” will be added to the Application Form. State contribution shall be filled in this field.
14. What shall a public institution declare within Annex “Project (Lead) Applicant declaration”, section “E. Statement on Applicant’s contribution’ in the table where the “Own private contribution’ has to be filled in? What about an NGO?
In case the applicant is a public institution, in Annex “Project (Lead) Applicant declaration” within the relevant section shall fill in only the “Own public contribution” line. The “Own private contribution” line shall not be filled in. In case the applicant is a non-governmental institution, the “Own private contribution” shall be specified, while the “Own public contribution” line shall be left empty. In both cases, the amount of the contribution mentioned in this Annex shall be correlated with the amount mentioned in the eMS Application Form and also with the one in the Annex / supporting document titled The official statement regarding the availability of the own contribution…”
15. Is it mandatory to obtain 3 price offers in order to support/sustain the costs mentioned in the project budget, in the application phase?
No, price offers are not mandatory in the project elaboration phase. The 3 price offers will be necessary in the implementation phase, when the actual procurement will take place, according to the Programmes provisions. (For further information check the GfA – Annex III/1. Programme general rules on eligibility)
16. What are the characteristics of joint staffing?
The joint staffing criterion shall be reflected in a balanced project management team which holds the necessary professional qualifications. The dimension of the management team shall be proportional with the needs of the project and each partner shall be represented, having in the management team internal or external staff (administrative or professional), in order to be able to ensure the planned activities. A balanced distribution of responsibilities and tasks should be equally ensured, avoiding duplication of certain functions or parallel management activities. For example, the appointment of one project manager and one financial manager for smaller projects should be enough. The tasks of the joint staff shall comply with the amount of the requested funding and their responsibilities shall be clearly defined. The project has to demonstrate that the members of the management team will closely cooperate and have regular information exchanges, in order to ensure the efficient management of the project. The joint staff’s activity should also include joint cross border meetings among the project partners.
17. Can an EGTC apply for funding alone, without partners?
An EGTC complying with the eligibility criteria may submit alone a project proposal, without any other national or cross-border partner. However, please keep in mind that in the Application Form, reference to cooperation criteria has to be properly addressed and the eMS field called Project relevance C.1. / Cooperation criteria, has to be properly filled in.
18. In what cases is it mandatory to prepare and submit a feasibility study?
The feasibility study is a mandatory document for flagship projects, Full Application phase. The feasibility study is not a mandatory document in the application phase for project proposals submitted within an Open Call. However, in case it is available, you can submit the feasibility study or any other document (not mentioned as mandatory) that might help you to sustain your project idea. For both, flagship or normal project proposals, it is mandatory to submit the feasibility study translated in English language.
19. How can several target groups which are not pre-defined be added in the eMS application form?
If you would like to select several target groups from the list, please hold the CTRL button while selecting the options. The list of target group categories available in the eMS contains besides the main categories, also the option “other”. If you choose this option, you have below the possibility to describe this new type of target group and to quantify it.
20. Can a project beneficiary hand over an equipment purchased in a project to other organisations?
In case of any equipment purchased within in a project, irrespective of the equipment’s nature, the beneficiary making the acquisition (in whose budget the expenditures for such purchase are included) will have to place the equipment in a location for which the beneficiary holds a legal document proving the property / administration or concession rights. Therefore, it is not allowed to hand over equipment purchased in a project to other organisations. The equipment shall be used solely for the implementation of the project, taking also into consideration the sustainability period stipulated in the Subsidy contract. Last but not least, it is important that the equipment should be installed in an adequate place, ensuring its optimal functioning, according to the relevant standards in force.
21. What is the maximum number of project partners within a partnership?
The maximum number of project partners in a normal project is 6 while, in case of a strategic project, maximum 8 partners can be involved. In addition, a strategic project may involve maximum 4 associated partners, 2 in Romania, two in Hungary.
22. What is the maximum number of projects in which an applicant can have the role of Lead Beneficiary?
Due to management and financial capacity reasons, one applicant will be selected as Lead Beneficiary in maximum 3 projects. In the context of the Programme, he can receive financing in a total of maximum 6 projects.
23. How old can the Title Deed be?
According to chapter 3 in Guide for Applicants, the Title deed is a mandatory document and must be no older than 30 calendar days. Such document is needed for proving the ownership of land/building when submitting the Application.
24. What is the time frame for preparation costs to be eligible within the project and what is the latest deadline these can be paid out?
Preparation costs must be committed and incurred between 1 January 2014 and the date of the submission of the Project Proposal/Concept Note. In order to be eligible, preparation costs must be paid out no later than 60 calendar days after the project proposal’s/CN’s approval by the MC.
25. Is the value of preparation costs limited?
The rate of the eligible preparation cost shall generally not exceed 5% of the total eligible project cost.
26. What are the eligibility conditions for an applicant in case of activities, which include works and investments?
In order to be eligible, a potential applicant must fulfil several criteria, such as:
1. Must have legal competencies in the project relevant field (Chapter 126.96.36.199 of the Guide for Applicants).
For all projects, it is compulsory that the partner-applicant has among its attributions, according to his statute or according to the national legislation, the implementation of the proposed activities or it must prove that it has a partnership agreement with the institutions competent to implement such activities, according to their statute or according to the national legislation.
2. All applicants involved in the project have to prove their professional, operational/administrative and financial capacity to manage their share of activities in the field of action they are applying for and must have direct responsibility for the preparation and management of the proposed actions both from a professional and from a financial point of view, not acting as intermediaries (Chapter.188.8.131.52.).
3. For infrastructure investments, the applicants must prove they have the legal right to perform the project activities in the specific location, through the following documents: the legal act (e.g. government decision, law, government ordinance, decision of local council, etc.) or contract stating the fact that the land and/or building/item of infrastructure is in concession/administration/owned by the applicant. For the concession/ administration contracts, the document must have a validity period exceeding with 5 years the financial closure of the project. The owner of the land/building has to give its written consent that the applicant is allowed to perform the infrastructure actions on/in the relevant land/ building/ item of infrastructure.
27. General management of the project is possible only under a labour contract?
The costs for management team are eligible under Staff costs budget line (in case of labour contract) or under external expertise and services costs (when a service contract is needed). The eligible costs related to external services are listed in the General Matrix of Costs RO-HU, Annex III.2.
28. In order to be eligible, is it mandatory for a project to contribute to the indicator defined within a specific Investment priority?
Yes, each financed project must contribute to the achievement of the programme indicators (both output and result indicators). In the project proposal, applicants need to clearly define the target only for their project output indicator.
29. What is a health-care department?
Health-care department is any structure organised as such, in the context of an authorized medical institution (e.g. hospital) and defined as a separate unit in the organisational chart or the Rules of Functions of that particular institution. The approach on project level will, obviously, consider the size and the specifics of each such unit, in terms of cost efficiency.
30. Is it compulsory for the cross border partner within a project to be from the closest neighbouring county?
It is not mandatory to have a cross border partner from the closest neighbouring county. According to the GfAs, in terms of location, the applicants must have their seats or a regional/local branch registered in the eligible programme area i.e. Satu Mare, Bihor, Arad and Timiș counties in Romania, and Szabolcs–Szatmár–Bereg, Hajdú-Bihar, Békés and Csongrád counties in Hungary.
31. It is necessary that the Annexes ‘Partnership declaration’ and ‘Project (Lead) Applicant declaration’ to be filed separately by all partners involved in the project?
Yes, both Annexes will be separately submitted by each project partner.
32. In which work package should the equipment related to a construction be included?
All activities related (such as equipment, related software, technical plans, technical supervision, taxes, etc.) to the investment must be included in WP Investment.
33. Considering the Programme’s Managing Authority is located in Bucharest, must the Lead Beneficiary be a Romanian partner?
No, it mustn’t. The Lead Beneficiary is selected from the project partners. Choosing the Lead Beneficiary within the partnership is based on beneficiary’s experience, existing financial and human resources, namely on the capacity to manage and coordinate the project as a whole.
34. What should be the language for the submitted project?
The project is to be submitted in English, the official language of the Programme. Please note that English is also the project implementation language.
35. The Lead Beneficiary signs the subsidy contract for community funding. How to proceed for state co-financing?
The Lead Beneficiary and the project partners will sign separate contracts for state co-financing with national authorities. Hungarian partners will sign contracts with the Prime Minister Office in Hungary and Romanian partners with the Ministry of Regional Development, Public Administration and European Funds. A precondition to signing the national co-financing contract is to conclude the Subsidy Contract for the ERDF funding with the Managing Authority (Ministry of Regional Development, Public Administration and European Funds).
36. We are a regional organization whose area of competence extends beyond the Programme’s eligible area. Is this a reason for exclusion from participating in the Programme?
Organizations operating at regional level are eligible if they have competence in one or more counties in the eligible area and they are headquartered or have a subsidiary registered in the eligible area. This fact must result from the documents related to the legal status of the organization. In addition to this criterion, the organization must also meet the other eligibility criteria applicable under the call for proposals, criteria mentioned in the Guide for Applicants.
37. If we consider that a project would fall under two investment priorities, how can we decide where to apply?
When deciding under which priority investment to submit the project proposal, one should bear in mind the entire application package, the project as a whole, including the goals and expected deliverables. In case the expected results correspond to the specific objectives of several priority axes, we recommend you to submit the project under the priority axis where most of the dominant characteristics of the project are met. The activities and results that are in synergy with other axes will not negatively affect the qualitative evaluation of the project.
38. Must the project activities be implemented in one county of a participating state only, or may be implemented in several counties?
Project activities must be implemented in the Programme area, namely in the following counties:
– Timis, Arad, Bihor, Satu Mare – Romania
– Csongrad, Bekes, Hajdu-Bihar, Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg – Hungary.
The activities may be implemented in all or in some of the above mentioned counties; we underline that, due to the cross-border character of the projects; the operations must be implemented in one Romanian county and one Hungarian county, at least.
39. In what currency should the budget be planned and reported?
The project’s budget should be planned and reported in Euro.
40. The delimitation between the various project activities must reflect a precise (equal) apportionment among the two participating countries (50-50%)?
The division of the project activities into equal shares among the partners will be not specifically assessed in the evaluation process. However, a veritable cross-border character will be assessed, as well as the benefit to the target groups identified on both sides of the border, and the benefit of the project results also on both sides of the border.
41. Is it necessary that each partner employs a person for the project, in order to fulfill the joint staff criterion?
No, it isn’t. The joint staff criterion is aimed at avoiding duplication of staff functions within the project. That is, a project should have one project manager, one financial manager, etc., to carry out tasks and to take responsibility for the entire project, on both sides of the border. The joint project management team should be appointed in compliance with the activities and responsibilities assumed by each partner in the project.
42. Who approves a project proposal?
The grant for a selected project proposal is approved by the Monitoring Committee.
43. What is the maximum share of the grant?
The community financing from the ERDF fund is maximum 85% of the total project value and is non-refundable. The national financing includes the national state financing, which is also non-refundable and the own contribution. See also Q 29.
44. Who may apply for financing? Only registered associations operating for public benefit? Does the same rule apply to partners, too?
Eligible applicants should be non-profit legal persons that are established based on the relevant national public or private law and act in the purpose of public benefit, i.e. public institutions, local councils, churches or non-profit association registered in the Register of Associations and foundations. Please be aware that bodies with an industrial or commercial character, political parties or individuals are not eligible for funding within the framework of this Programme. The above mentioned conditions apply to all members of the partnership: Lead Beneficiaries and Project Partners.
45. Is the construction of a roundabout, in a 10,000 inhabitants town, eligible under Priority Axis 2?
Such a project is not eligible.
46. What kind of cross-border roads may be financed?
Only roads mentioned in the bilateral agreement between Romania and Hungary, with the related provisions, may be financed. The above mentioned agreement was approved by governments’ decisions.
47. Is it possible to extend the bicycle paths built within the previous Programme?
Yes, provided that the cross border impact is demonstrated.
48. Is it possible to further develop projects financed within the previous Programme?
Yes, provided that the project activities are eligible for the new Programme.
49. Is it possible to request pre-financing of projects?
Pre-financing is possible only from national co-financing.
50. How much is the share of the beneficiary from the national co – financing?
On the RO side, 85% ERDF, 15% national co-financing, out of which 13% state co-financing and 2% own contribution.
On the HU side, 85% ERDF, 15% from the state budget for public authorities / central public institutions, and for other beneficiaries, 15% national co-financing, out of which 10% from the state budget and 5% own contribution.
51. What are flagship projects and based on which criteria are they considered strategic? Which are the institutions that can apply for a flagship project?
Flagship projects are projects of high value, between 5 and 11.8 million EURO that address the most important needs of the eligible area, have a tangible impact on a significant part of the Programme area and enable the effective delivery of the Programme’s expected results. Any public institution, having the financial capacity and resources needed for the implementation of such large and of great impact projects, can apply for flagship projects.
52. Which priority axes finance flagship projects?
Flagship projects can be financed under Priority axes 1-4, except for Priority Investment 6/b within the Priority axis 1.
53. How many priority axes will be available under an open call?
For open calls, all priority axes, from1 to 6, will be available.
54. Which is the financial allocation for flagship projects (FSP), respectively for open calls for proposals?
The financial allocation for flagship projects will be of 94,5 millions EURO (ERDF contribution), while 83,25 million EURO (ERDF contribution) are going to be allocated for projects selected under the open calls for proposals.
55. What’s the difference between a flagship project and a standard investment-one?
The flagship projects will carry out infrastructure investments having impact on an important part of the Programme area and will have a greater value. It is also possible to have infrastructure investment projects under the open calls for proposals, on all PAs, within the established minimum-maximum limits for projects. The relevant limits will be specified in the Guide for Applicants.
56. Financing through reimbursement represents a problem for civil organizations. Is it possible for civil organizations to get an advance-payment of a greater value?
No, it is not possible.
57. Will the advance-payment be granted from ERDF or from national contribution funds? How does this principle apply to EGTC, which is a mixture between RO and HU?
The advance-payment may be granted exclusively from the national contribution. For EGTCs, the advance-payment may be granted in line with applicable national rules of the country the EGTC is registered in.
58. Why are there differences between RO and HU as regards the own contribution?
The quantum of the own contribution depends on each government’s decision.
59. Could the HU NGOs receive 15% national co-financing or do they have to support the own contribution?
Within the cross-border projects, the HU NGOs will have to assure a 5% own contribution.
60. Are the SMEs eligible within the Programme?
No, the SMEs are not eligible within the Programme.
61. Is it possible for eligible beneficiaries headquartered outside the eligible area to apply within the Programme?
Yes, provided that they have a local or regional subsidiary in the eligible area. Exceptions are possible in the case of public entities not having their legal seat in the eligible area, but having legal competencies for implementing the project in the eligible area.
62. The Lead Beneficiary has to be from Romania or from Hungary?
The Lead Beneficiary may be either from Romania or from Hungary; it is preferable, on the one hand, to elect as LB the partner having the most relevant experience, on the other hand, it is preferable that the LB has the financial and especially the human resources needed for project implementation management.
63. Within the framework of the previous Programme, there were funds allocated for cooperation between universities and research institutes, but this kind of financing is not identifiable within the framework of the present Programme.
Within the present Programme, there is no priority axis specifically addressed to universities and research institutes, but such entities are to be found among the potential beneficiaries under some priority axes and may participate as partners in the implementation of concrete investment projects.
64. How have the Programme’s activities and axis been established?
The Programme’s activities and priority axis have been established during the strategic programming process, within the Joint Working Group sessions, based on most important needs identified in the eligible area. The activities mentioned in the Programme are indicative, for any question related to project ideas, please contact the Joint Secretariat within BRECO.
65. How can we find a Hungarian partner?
There is a section for partner search on the Programme’s website; you can enter there your project idea, in order to find potential project partners interested in your project. Please contact the Joint Secretariat within BRECO for details.
66. How long will the evaluation period be, for project proposals submitted under an open call?
The evaluation period for the applications submitted under an open call is estimated at about 4 months.
67. REGARDING THE TWO PARTICIPATING COUNTRIES, IS IT NECESSARY TO MAKE INVESTMENTS “IN THE MIRROR”? IF INVESTMENT IN INFRASTRUCTURE IS PLANNED ON ONE SIDE OF THE BORDER IS IT NECESSARY TO PLAN THE SAME INFRASTRUCTURE ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE BORDER, OR NOT?
Activities “in the mirror” are not compulsory under the Programme. If you plan to build an infrastructure on one side of the border, it is not necessary to plan the same infrastructure on the other side of the border. Nevertheless, you will have to demonstrate the cross border character of the project, as well as the need of its implementation from a cross-border perspective.
68. IF A BENEFICIARY WOULD LIKE TO APPLY FOR AN INVESTMENT BUT HE IS NOT THE OWNER OF THE RELEVANT LAND, HOW COULD HE MAKE THE INVESTMENT THROUGH A PROJECT?
According to the GfA, for infrastructure investments, the applicants must prove that they have the legal right to perform the project activities in the specific location, through the following documents which must be provided:
-the legal act (e.g. government decision, law, government ordinance, decision of local counties, etc.) or contract stating the fact that the land and/or building/item of infrastructure is in concession/ administration/owned by the applicant;
-it must be proved that the land and/ or building/ item of infrastructure is owned or that the duration of the concession/ administration contract is for at least 5 years after the estimated month of the financial closure of the project, and that the owner has given its written agreement saying that the applicant may perform the infrastructure actions on/ in the relevant land/ building/ item of infrastructure.
-declaration from the land and/or building/ item of infrastructure owner that the land and/or building/item of infrastructure is free of any encumbrances, not the object of a pending litigation, not the object of a claim according to the relevant national legislation.
In case the land and/or building/item of infrastructure are in concession/ administration, the owner will provide the declaration.
-documents related to the registration of the land and/or building/item of infrastructure in the relevant public registers (Title Deed issued by the Land Registry).
69. WHEN IS AN ENERGY AUDIT REQUIRED TO RENOVATE A BUILDING?
The energy audit is requested according to the national legislation, regarding the building/intervention works. The document will be requested in the implementation phase of the project.
70. WHAT KIND OF ROADS MAY BE FINANCED UNDER PRIORITY AXIS 2?
According to the Cooperation Programme, only roads that demonstrably improve direct access of secondary and tertiary nodes to TEN-T core or comprehensive network are eligible for support.