The Association “Cities Energy in Romania” (OER) announces the launch of a new funding instrument – European City Facility (EUCF) – which offers expertise and simplified financial support (up to EUR 60,000), capacity building and assistance to local communities regardless of area or the level of the population, in order to develop solid investment packages for Climate and Energy, to mobilize the necessary funding.
The EUCF opened the first call for applications between 25 May and 2 October 2020. The initial duration of the call (2 months) was extended based on the circumstances caused by the Covid-19 epidemic.
The concepts for Investments, respectively pre-feasibility studies, analyzes of market or stakeholder barriers, legal and governance analyzes, are all useful in identifying the necessary projects. As a financing strategy and roadmap for implementation, these Investment Concepts are a first step towards a full-fledged financial plan.
A simple and transparent application process in Romanian allows local authorities to participate in the call for funding, within their own resources. During the application, the local authorities receive assistance in Romanian, through the National Expert. In Romania, the OER Association fulfills the role of National Expert and Dissemination Network for the EUCF program.
Applicants declared winners will have the opportunity to strengthen their capacity to develop investment packages and will receive financial assistance of up to EUR 60,000. Sources for financing the implementation of these strategies may subsequently result from both the private sector (development banks, commercial banks, etc.), national investment platforms, and other European Union-funded programs, such as the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the European Structural Investment Facility (ESIF), project development assistance (PDA) facilities, for example the European Investment Bank’s ELENA program.
Building on some of the barriers faced by small and medium-sized municipalities, such as limited human and financial resources, lack of experience or expertise in developing investment packages, and generally conservative approaches to project financing, EUCF supports local investment in the field of sustainable energy and energy efficiency.
Advantages of applications submitted by local communities Associations
After the period for submitting applications for funding (May 25 – October 2, 2020), the evaluators will have two months to verify the applications. The evaluation will take into account the level of energy savings and expected investments, but also qualitative criteria such as stakeholder involvement, governance structure, etc. Considering that energy savings and investment could increase through the aggregation of projects, local authorities and ATU associations are encouraged to join forces and resources to submit joint applications.
The OER Association will present details on the EUCF instrument and the stages of the first call for funding in a webinar to be held on 25 June 2020, from 11:00 to 12:30. Those interested in participating can register by filling out the Registration Form.
For more information, see the applicant’s guide on the EUCF website or download the Call Description. For questions, you can contact the EUCF Bureau or the National Expert.