Objective 2 Programme 2007 - 2013 (ERDF)
A new period of development began back in 2007. This means that North-Rhine Westphalia will actually receive as much as 1.3 billion euros from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) by 2013. The funds form part of the so-called Objective 2 Programme for areas whose economies are realigning themselves to prepare for imminent challenges. Together with further funding from the NRW state government and private sources, around 2.5 billion euros are available.
The NRW Objective 2 Programme for North-Rhine Westphalia has three important goals:
Firstly, the medium-sized business sector and the entrepreneurial scene is to be strengthened and made more active than before.
Secondly, regions are to be made into more attractive and better places to live. Thirdly, however, and more importantly than all, potential and ability for innovation is to be improved across the whole state.
Therefore, it is creativity and innovation that take centre stage in the new period of development. The term ‘innovation’ is not limited to new technological products. People in all sectors within North-Rhine Westphalia are called upon to pose previously unasked questions: they are to link considerations and approaches in ways that have hitherto remained untried. Inspirational ideas ‘made in NRW’ are in demand: future-oriented technologies and services, unusual forms of cooperation or new approaches for knowledge transfer between research and business. Small and medium-sized businesses form an essential breeding ground for entrepreneurial spirit.
The specific goals and priorities of the programme will improve the ability of companies to react and adjust to the demands of globalisation and structural change, with the result that companies will hire extra staff and enjoy increased revenue.
Implementation of the programme strategy and its goals are based on three development priorities: strengthening the entrepreneurial base, innovation and a knowledge-based economy, and sustainable urban and regional development.
The NRW Objective 2 Programme is part of the overall EU commission-approved “Operational Regional Competitiveness and Employment Programme 2007 – 2013 (EFRE)”.
More information: http://www.ziel2.nrw.de/1_Ziel2-Programm/index.php