A new ERDF Business Enhance grants scheme with an overall budget of € 20,000,000 has been launched in January 2018 by the Malta Parliamentary Secretariat for EU Funds. This is focused on supporting enterprises planning to undertake research, development and innovation actions within Malta’s Smart Specialization Areas, specifically in the following areas:
- Aviation and Aerospace
- Tourism Product Development
- Maritime Services
Support is to be provided through the following 4 measures:
Measure 1 – supporting eligible enterprises to undertake Feasibility Studies on the potential of a specific R&D project. The eligible costs in this sense are personnel and acquisition of knowledge related costs, and the aid intensity varies from 70% for small, to 60% for medium and 50% for large entrerprises.
Measure 2 – supporting the implementation of Research and Development Projects aimed at the development of new products, services or solutions having a Technology Readiness Level of minimum 6 and backed up by a positive feasible study. The eligible costs in this case cover personnel costs, acquisition of knowledge, costs of equipment and instruments, additional overheads, and the aid intensity varies from 25% to 60%, depending on the size of the supported enterprise and is the RDI project is of a collaborative nature or not.
Measure 3 – supporting investment in Research Infrastructures by enterprises, meaning facilities aimed to provide research as an economic activity, to support the development and exchange of knowledge, expertise and the creation of technology transfer possibilities among enterprises. The aid intensity here is 50% of eligible costs, being investment costs for the acquisition of tangible and intangible assets directly required for the setting-up of the Research Infrastructure.
Measure 4 – supporting Process Innovation by enterprises, being the development and implementation of either a new or significantly improved production or delivery method. The eligible costs in this case cover personnel costs, acquisition of knowledge, costs of equipment and instruments, additional overheads, and the aid intensity is of 50% for SMEs, and 15% for large enterprises that undertake such a project in collaboration with an SME.
This Scheme shall be managed through open rolling calls for applications, that are however still to be announced.