Almost 400 applications filed from Belarus for cross-border program with Poland and Ukraine

Almost 400 applications filed from Belarus for cross-border program with Poland and Ukraine

Almost 400 applications have been filed from Belarus for the cross-border cooperation program Poland-Belarus-Ukraine for 2014-2020, Maksim Aldanov, the head of the joint technical secretariat (JTS), told the media, BelTA has learned.

The first stage of the new program saw more than 750 concept notes filed, including 399 from Belarusian organizations. Belarusian organizations act as leading beneficiaries on 47 projects. Requested amount from the Belarusian side is €171 million, excluding the country's own contribution. The overall budget of the program stands at €108 million. It is obvious that the competition among applicants is very high this year and the selection criteria have become more stringent.

It is already known that 84 projects involving Belarusian organizations have advanced to the second stage in such priority areas as Security and Heritage. As regards the two remaining priorities, Borders and Availability, they will be in focus of a meeting of the selection committee on 24-25 May.

“Applications were almost two times more than during the previous program. I think that this is the result of the purposeful work and the 52 projects that were already implemented. The results are feasible and can be used for many years. Therefore, there was a greater interest on behalf of the regional and district administrations, non-profit organizations in the program,” Maksim Aldanov noted.

On May 18 the Joint Technical Secretariat of the program is hosting a seminar in Brest for Belarusian beneficiaries who have reached the second stage of the selection. Attending the event are representatives of the organizations from Brest Oblast and Grodno Oblast. A series of similar seminars will be held in the coming months. Representatives of the Joint Technical Secretariat will use these seminars to show the claimants how to fill in the final application form and get more chances for receiving EU funds.

The participants of the seminar in Brest were welcomed by Brest Oblast Vice Governor Mikhail Batsenko. He emphasized the importance of cross-border projects as they are aimed at improving living standards in frontier areas. “We are interested in attracting funds in any area. First of all, these are infrastructure projects. Today, for instance, it is known that €9 million will be attracted for two big investment projects in Brest Oblast. These are the construction of a road from the town of Vysokoye to the Peschatka border checkpoint in Kamenets District and a project of the Emergencies Ministry,” the vice governor said.

The final results of the first selection round under the Poland-Belarus-Ukraine program for 2014-2020 will be announced in early October when Minsk hosts a meeting of the joint monitoring committee with the participation of representatives from 14 districts of three countries.

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