INTERREG IVB North West Europe (NWE) Programme is a financial instrument of the European Union's Cohesion Policy.
The programme invests €355 million from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) into the economic, environmental, social and territorial future of North West Europe (NWE). The fund is used to co-finance projects that maximise the diversity of NWE's territorial assets by tackling common challenges through transnational cooperation. To this end, the Programme seeks organisations that are resolute in their ambition to contribute to a cohesive and sustainable territorial development of North West Europe.
The Programme consists of three key pillars:
1. Capitalising on innovation
The NWE region is the economic powerhouse of Europe: it is endowed with a wealth of territorial assets including a highly skilled workforce and world class universities. To extract the economic the value of such attributes, projects under this priority should aim to strengthen the economic competitiveness of NWE in response to the Lisbon agenda for growth and jobs.
Projects aim to produce transnational partnerships which can enhance the region's capacity to innovate and facilitate the development of knowledge-based activities. Preference is given to projects which can develop cross-sectoral synergies and facilitate the creation, demonstration and above all, the application of knowledge.
Project activities are clearly linked to territorial development and do not solely focus on networking within the specific scientific/business sector, for which the interregional cooperation strand is more appropriate. The Programme does not support research and development or academic networking which is not linked to actions or demonstration projects.
2. Managing natural resources and risks
The sustainable management of natural resources and risks is of utmost importance for the NWE area. This priority calls for intervention based on a broad range of activities which attempt to minimise and prevent the pollution of land, water and air. In the case of coastal, marine and river flooding, preference is given to projects which transfer applicable knowledge and develop innovative responses across the whole of NWE area.
Preference is given to cross-sectoral projects addressing obstacles in legislative systems and those which focus on improving the lack of integration in institutional and governmental structures. Projects limited to data collection and management, or local/regional activities and flood defence investments that are not relevant to the wider transnational cooperation area are not supported.
3. Improving connectivity
North West Europe is, in general, characterised by a high level of accessibility. Regional imbalances, however, continue to persist: the core area suffers from congestion and the more peripheral and rural areas endure low levels of accessibility (i.e. transport infrastructure) and connectivity (i.e. advanced ICT).
The focus of the Programme is to overcome such challenges, not only through demand management a
Sovereign body of the NEW Programme is the Monitoring Committee. It defines the strategic direction of the programme and is responsible for implementing the monitoring of projects. Doing this the Monitoring Committee is being observed through the European Commission.
The Member States form the Steering Committee. Its purpose is to make decisions on individual project application and co-ordinate the monitoring of the projects implementation.
The Certifying Authority is responsible for payment of the ERDF assistance.
The Managing Authority assures efficient and correct managing and implementation of the NEW Operational Programme.
In addition the Joint Technical Secretariat is responsible for the day-to-day-management of the programme. The JTS develops and implements the programmes strategy and is responsible for the project development process in close collaboration with the network of national Contact Points.