Interreg projects FORESDA and DanuBioValNet presented at the conference on EU funds. Great response from regional companies and institutions

Friday, 13 October 2017 / Published in Activities, Calendar, Events & Networking, Held, Press Releases, Projects

In Sarajevo, on the 6th of October, gathered more than 80 stakeholders from the forestry and woodworking sector with the aim of exchanging opinions and obtaining the latest information on EU funds and sectoral lobbying. The conference was organized by the Croatian Wood Cluster and the University of Bihac, with the support of the Chamber of Economy of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Wood Cluster of Herzegovina.

In addition to the representatives of the institutions and the scientific and research community, participated a great number of key sector companies from BiH and Southeast European region. Participants showed a proactive approach and a strong desire to expand knowledge on sectoral matters, in particular on lobbying and finding alternative sources of funding for the innovation and increasing business competitiveness. Some of the participants presented their project ideas, mostly focused on staff education and R&D, investments in new technology and integrated forest protection, which cannot be implemented without financial support from EU sources. The lack of more specific support from relevant EU structures and difficulty of finding project partners in Western countries were detected as key issues. In this respect, networking and stock market of project ideas are highlighted as one of the important prerequisites for applying to EU tenders, which often require strong project consortia made of sectoral stakeholders from different countries.

Rosana Simunovic, a project manager at the Croatian Wood Cluster, presented concrete experiences and procedures in EU projects, starting with application steps and finding international partners. FORESDA and DanuBioValNet, two current international projects related to forest-based industries, involving project partners from Croatia, Slovenia, BIH and Serbia, were presented. As part of the FORESDA project, there are numerous activities related to the building of the Transnational Strategy for forest-based industries in the Danube Region, which will improve the sector’s competitiveness. DanubioValNet aims to strengthen eco-innovation and develop new innovative bio-based products through cross-sectoral cooperation. Both projects have been funded by the Interreg Danube Transnational program.

The Croatian Wood Cluster participates in a number of EU projects and through its office in Brussels provides services in the preparation of EU projects. At the beginning of December (4-5.12), a B2B of potential partners for EU projects will be held in Dubrovnik, within the framework of the important sectoral conference in the Mediterranean Adriatic Wood Days. Applications at [email protected].