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IPA: Regional Competitiveness Operational Programme in Croatia

24 November 2009
by Ina Dimireva -- last modified 06 February 2010

The overall objective of the Regional Competitiveness Operational Programme is to achieve higher competitiveness and a balanced regional development by supporting small and medium enterprises' competitiveness, alongside with improving economic conditions in Croatia's lagging areas. IPA funds will therefore support business services rendered for micro and small and medium size enterprises (SMEs), strategic cooperation between companies, strengthening of entrepreneurial skills in the academia, promoting business and investment climate, developing business-related infrastructure.


Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA)

From January 2007 onwards, the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA) replaces a series of European Union programmes and financial instruments for candidate countries or potential candidate countries, namely PHARE, PHARE CBC, ISPA, SAPARD, and CARDS.

The IPA is made up of five different components:

  • Assistance for transition and institution building;
  • Cross-border cooperation (with EU Member States and other countries eligible for IPA);
  • Regional development (transport, environment, regional and economic development);
  • Human resources (strengthening human capital and combating exclusion);
  • Rural development.

EU candidate countries (Croatia, Turkey and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) are the IPA beneficiary countries which are eligible for all five components of IPA.

IPA: Regional Competitivess Operational Programme in Croatia

Priorities and measures

Priority 1: Improvement development potential of lagging behind regions (EC contribution: € 10,957,500)

This priority targets the so called lagging behind areas and focuses on ten counties experiencing the most significant disadvantage. The measure 1.1 Business Related Infrastructure will support the creation and growth of SMEs by providing in these areas quality business related infrastructure and business support.

Priority 2: Enhancing the competitiveness of the Croatian economy (EC contribution: € 21,457,500)

This priority aims to enhance the competitiveness of the Croatian overall economy and in particular to enhance growth of SMEs. Under the measure 2.1 Improvement of business climate assistance focuses on assuring that quality business advisory services are more accessible to SMEs, improving business and investment climate, encouraging cooperation between businesses through development of clusters, and on developing effective business support capacities related to e-business. Measure 2.2 Technology transfer and support services for knowledge-based start-ups supports cooperation of business and education and research sectors and developing capacities for technology transfer.

Priority 3: Technical Assistance (EC contribution: €2,934,750)

This priority aims at ensuring a sound and efficient management and implementation of the programme, by improving the administrative capacity of the institutions concerned and supporting implementation, monitoring, evaluation, control and communication activities, as well as to prepare sectoral studies and future operational programmes.

Contact & Links

Operating Structure

Head of the Operating Structure for the Regional Competitiveness Operational Programme

Ms Tajana Kesić Šapić, State Secretary
Ministry of Economy, Labour and Entrepreneurship
Ulica grada Vukovara 78
10 000 Zagreb

Contracting Authority

Source: European Commission

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