The European Commission has issued a call for proposals for a €7 million new regional investment and trade facilitation project EAST-INVEST. It is open to the countries involved in the Eastern Partnership, namely Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia, and covers the period from 2010 to 2013.
EAST-INVEST is intended to contribute to the economic development of the Eastern Neighbourhood region and to the improvement of its business environment by facilitating networks between EU and Eastern Neighbourhood region public and private organisations.
EAST-INVEST will support the operation of the Eastern Partnership multilateral framework and help develop a small and medium enterprises (SME) facility, which is one of its six Flagship Initiatives.
The new trade facilitation project will aim to encourage new flows of Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) and to strengthen the investment promotion process between the EU and the Partner Countries, as well as between the Eastern Neighbours. More specifically, it will strive to:
- strengthen public-private dialogue by integrating SMEs, business facilitators and selected public-sector SME facilitators into the networking mechanisms;
- facilitate exchange of best practices and interconnections between EU and Eastern Neighbourhood companies in order to favour business co-operation agreements, mutual trade, transfer of technology, customs procedures, product standards , and investment;
- develop the capacity of Eastern Neighbourhood SME support organisations to facilitate improved SME networking and trade development.
The deadline for the submission of concept notes and applications is 4 March 2010.
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