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North Macedonian firms seek partners from region for O2 Challenge

North Macedonian firms seek partners from region for O2 Challenge

Published

April 23, 2020

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Published:

April 23, 2020

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Micro, small and medium-sized North Macedonian firms can apply alone or in groups for the O2 Challenge, ideally involving partners from Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Kosovo* or Albania. Eligible endeavors lower emissions and help the adaptation to climate change.

Marketable and innovative processes, services, products, methodologies and activities dealing with the environmental impact are competing in the second O2 Challenge. The Fund for Innovations and Technology Development said micro, small and medium-sized North Macedonian firms can get up to 85% of costs or a maximum of EUR 30,000 covered. Those that apply with partners from elsewhere in the Western Balkans will have priority, according to the propositions.

The motive is the acceleration of climate change, attributed to increasing emissions of greenhouse gases. The organizers warned the decade through 2023 is projected to be the warmest at least since 1850 and that humanity is faced with natural disasters as a consequence. The original deadline for submissions was postponed to June 3.

Applicants which include partners from elsewhere in the Western Balkans will have priority

In the public call, the fund stressed long droughts, torrential rains, frequent storms and hail are in the cards for the Western Balkans in the next half a century. Participation is available for entities in North Macedonia and ventures on a domestic level or those involving Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Kosovo* or Albania.

The statement highlights data that show the country’s citizens don’t have enough information on the necessary adaptation to climate change. The Ministry of Environment and Physical Planning, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the City of Skopje, Macedonia 2025, environmental organization Eko svest and others participate in the O2 Challenge 2.

The Fund for Innovations and Technology Development added it intends to establish an instrument for future competitions and challenges for generally beneficial and innovative solutions. It has focused its mission also on technological development, knowledge transfer, research, job creation, the improvement of competitiveness and access to financial support.

The Fund for Innovations and Technology Development intends to establish a financial instrument for future competitions and challenges

The suggested areas for applicants are energy, industry, transportation, forestry, biodiversity, health, water resources, agriculture and disaster risk reduction.

A total of MKD 5 million or EUR 81,200 is available for financing. Eligible projects can have a duration of up to one year. The applicant or the leading entity in the consortium must be in majority Macedonian ownership and have no more than 250 employees.

* This designation is without prejudice to positions on status and is in line with UNSCR 1244/99 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence.
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