Deputy Minister of Regional Development and EU Funds, Jakša Puljiz, and the Ambassador of the Kingdom of Norway to the Republic of Croatia, Henrik Ofstad, formally marked the beginning of the implementation of the Programme within the Kingdom of Norway and European Economic Area financial mechanisms for the 2009-2014 period.

The Programme opening ceremony took place today at the Dubrovnik Hotel and was attended by the representatives of the Ministry of Science, Education and Sports, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Finance and the Agency for the Audit of European Union Programmes Implementation System, as well as the representatives of the Embassy of the Kingdom of Norway to the Republic of Croatia, Honorary Consul of Iceland, representatives of the Swiss Confederation in the Republic of Croatia, and the Financial Mechanism Office in Brussels.

“It is my great pleasure to open for the first time in Croatia the Programmes within the financial mechanisms of the Kingdom of Norway and the European Economic Area. Project implementation in this first financial period will be, as always, a great challenge, but we are ready for it, and are hoping for a continuation of this successful cooperation and further strengthening of bilateral relations with all donor states,” said Deputy Minister Puljiz at the opening ceremony.

The financial instruments of the European Economic Area contribute to the reduction of social and economic disparities within the EEA and at the same time strengthen bilateral relations between donor states (the Kingdom of Norway, Iceland and the Principality of Lichtenstein) and the beneficiary states. The final objective of the mechanisms is to create a strong internal market turned to the future. The financial mechanisms in the 2009–2014 period amount to a total of HRK 13.1 billion.

Within the EEA financial mechanism in the Republic of Croatia, two Programmes will be implemented by 2017 in the value of HRK 38.3 million:

  1. NGO Programme aimed at strengthening civil society development and enhancing the contribution to social justice, democracy and sustainable development;
  2. Program of the EEA Financial Mechanism aimed at strengthening social and economic links on the national, regional and local levels.

Within the Norwegian financial mechanism in the Republic of Croatia, three Programmes will be implemented, in the value of HRK 35.2 million:

  1. Decent Work and Tripartite Dialogue with the aim of promoting decent work and improving tripartite cooperation between employers’ organizations, trade unions and public authorities in supporting equitable and sustainable economic and social development;
  2. Civil Society Support Programme with the aim of strengthening civil society development and enhancing the contribution to social justice, democracy and sustainable development;
  3. Norwegian Financial Mechanism Programme with the aim of achieving a fairer and more efficient judicial system.

News taken from the portal: www.mrrfeu.hr