What are non-refundable funds?
Non-reimbursable funds represent direct financial aid from public funds for the realization of activities and specific results. These activities contribute to the implementation of actions and programs of public interest.
The non-reimbursable financing represents a way of stimulating the public and private sector in order to implement public policies undertaken at national or European level.
In the usual language, the non-reimbursable funds are also called “grants”. Depending on the origin of the funds, the state aid (funds from the Romanian Government), or structural and cohesion funds (funds from the European Union budget) can be distinguished.
Who can benefit from non-refundable funds?
Given the intentions of the authority which grant the funds (funding certain areas of public and private sector), grants may be awarded to both public institutions and private entities (companies), regardless of their size or legal structure.
In the private sector, grants may be offered for entrepreneurs, start-ups, SMEs, micro-enterprises, or large enterprises. The programs can also be addressed to NGOs, clusters or other associations.
What is the role of the consultant?
The consultants are hired by the beneficiaries to provide expertise and to help companies obtain the grants, due to their experience in the field of non-reimbursable financing. The role of a consultant is a complex one, given that it has to cover a wide range of skills and competences (economic, financial, legal, marketing, administrative, communication, public procurement). The financing programs are structured in the form of project competitions and, in order to obtain financing, a competitive application is required whereby the needs of the project correspond to the needs and requirements of the company, applicable in the context of the program. Most companies have a well defined internal staffing scheme and all human resources are allocated to a specific activity. Therefore, the role of the consultant in this context is to take over the burden of developing and implementing the application and to guide the beneficiaries during all stages of the project.
What are European Funds?
What are the State Aid Schemes?
State aid is any measure of support granted by the state or by the administrative-territorial units, from local or state resources, which favors certain activities, productions or goods, or the delivery of certain services, which affect the exchange between Romania and the Member States and it is considered incompatible with a normal competitive environment. Providing these types of aid, in accordance with European Union legislation, is intended to reduce market inequalities or disparities in certain sectors and to stimulate the development of strategic areas (stimulating the main strategic investments, the development of SMEs, etc.). The main difference between state aid and European Funds is represented by the source from which the funds come from (national sources for state aid and from the state budget and the European Union budget for European Funds).
What does minimis aid mean?
This type of aid is a support measure for companies, regardless of their size, without exceeding 200,000 Euro over a period of 3 consecutive fiscal years. This type of aid can be granted by different public institutions, usually at national level. In most cases minimis aids cannot be offered to businesses operating in a certain area, such as transport of goods, companies from the agricultural sector or export activities.
Prior to submitting the application for the minimis financing, the beneficiary must verify whether it meets the financing terms and conditions.