The Agreements were signed in Zagreb today in the presence of the Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg.
Under the agreements (MoUs), the three donor countries have allocated €103.4 million to Croatia for the coming seven years.
Strengthening innovation, education and justice cooperation
Innovation and business development with focus on green innovation and blue growth will be a key priority. Cooperation in the area of justice will be strengthened with focus on effectivization of the courts. There is also significant contribution to local development with focus on equal opportunities for education of elementary school pupils. The energy and climate change programme will focus on renewable energy. Croatia will also receive funding to strengthen civil society and promote decent work and tripartite dialogue.
Download the full agreements:
Croatia has been a beneficiary of the EEA and Norway Grants since April 2014 after the country joined the EU and the EEA in 2013.
“These agreements will strengthen cooperation between Norway and Croatia in important sectors. There will be good opportunities for Norwegian businesses to become partners in the various projects. Through the EEA and Norway Grants, Norway is making an important contribution to development in a part of Europe where this is needed,” said Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ine Eriksen Søreide.
Four Norwegian public entities are involved in the development and implementation of the programmes and assist in facilitation of project partnerships between Croatia and the donor countries.
The Council of Europe will be involved in the justice programme as an International Partner Organisations.
Contribution to social and economic cohesion
The objectives of all the programmes are to contribute to social and economic development in Croatia and strengthen the cooperation between Croatia and Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.
“Liechtenstein has great interest in a strong and stable Europe. We consider the EEA Grants as our contribution to boost social and economic cohesion in the EEA. Moreover, we see it as an important tool to strengthen our bilateral relations with our European partners. I am happy we could take this important step to sign the MoU today and I am looking forward to see many successful projects implemented in the near future,” said Aurelia Frick, Foreign Minister of Liechtenstein.
“Iceland and Croatia already have a very special relationship as Iceland was the first country to recognize the re-stored independence of Croatia. I look forward to reinforcing our political and cultural relations within the EEA Grants, supporting collaboration in a wide range of activities from blue growth to civil society,“ said the Icelandic Minister for Foreign Affairs, Guðlaugur Þór Þórðarson.
Overview of programmes
Innovation, Research, Education and Competitiveness €22.0 million
- Fund operator: Innovation Norway
Social dialogue- Decent work €0.47 million
- Fund operator: Innovation Norway
Local Development and Poverty Reduction €26.0 million
- Donor programme partner: DIKU – Norwegian Agency for International Cooperation and Quality Enhancement in Higher Education
Energy and Climate Change €17.0 million
- Donor programme partner: Norwegian Water Resources and Energy Directorate
Civil Society €8.5 million
Justice and Home Affairs €13.0 million
- Donor programme partner:Norwegian Courts Administration (DA),
- International Partner Organisation: Council of Europe
Bilateral Fund €2.1 million
About the EEA and Norway Grants
Under the EEA Agreement, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway are part of the European internal market. The EEA Agreement sets out the common goal of working together to reduce social and economic disparities in Europe and strengthen cooperation between European countries. Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway contribute to this through the EEA and Norway Grants. For the period 2014-2021, a total contribution of €2.8 billion has been agreed (€1.5 billion EEA Grants and €1.3 billion Norway Grants). Croatia will receive € 103.4 million (€56.8 million EEA Grants and €46.6 million Norway Grants) of this total.
In the coming months work will continue to set up the programmes. Open calls for proposals will be announced at a later stage. Follow updates on the country page for Croatia.