The ERDF Program 2014 – 2020


On 3 April 2014, the Government of the Brussels-Capital Region approved a new operational programme for the implementation of the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) in the Region for the 2014-2020 programming period.
This programme, in line with the targets set at a European level, will contribute to the financing of projects intended to strengthen the Region’s economic, social and territorial cohesion.  On 12 May 2014, with the support of the European Regional Development Fund, the Brussels Region issued a call for projects worth 200 million euros. Until the deadline for the call for projects on 25 July 2014 the ERDF Unit offered support in the form of thematic seminars, guidance notes and answers to the candidates’ questions, to operators interested in creating projects that satisfied the operational programme’s requirements,. The call for projects resulted in 196 projects being received between 12 May and 25 July.
The Evaluation Committee, comprised of experts appointed by the Government and representatives of Government members, analysed the eligibility of and opportunity presented by the projects submitted in relation to the Operational Programme’s objectives. Given the large number of projects submitted, the project evaluation phase took several months and the official selection by the Brussels Government was announced on 21 May 2015, with a total of 46 projects.

The Partnership Agreement

The structural funds are divided into five thematic funds that co-fund projects. 
The federated entities (Communities and Regions) draft a partnership agreement, which is a joint strategic framework created from the contributions of the different parties and containing the priorities and their specific features. 
In Belgium, the federated entities are responsible for managing the operational programmes.  On 30 October 2014, the European Commission officially adopted the Partnership Agreement with Belgium that defines the strategy for the optimal use of the available funds.  This agreement cleared the way for investments totalling 2.28 billion euros under the cohesion policy for the period 2014-2020. Belgium will also receive 551.8 million euros for rural development and 41.7 million euros for the maritime and fisheries sector.

On 30 October 2014, the European Commission officially adopted the Partnership Agreement with Belgium, which defines the strategy for optimal use of the available funds.  On 18/12/2014, the European Commission adopted the OP 2014-2020 of the Brussels-Capital Region. 

ERDF budget in BCR

195 million will have been invested by the Region and Europe by the end of 2023 in 58 projects and three financial instruments selected by the BCR Government since May 2015.
React-EU (Reinvigorating Europe’s Cohesion and Territories) complements the 2014-2020 programmes. The amount for the BCR is €4.1 million.
From the ERDF, the additional resources shall primarily be used to support investment in products and services for health services and to provide support in the form of working capital or investment support to SMEs.

Strategy 2014-2020

The Operational Programme (OP) of the 2014-2020 ERDF Programme in the Brussels-Capital Region aims to strengthen the Region’s economic, social and territorial cohesion by funding various projects.

It was approved at its second reading by the Government of the Brussels-Capital Region on 30/04/2014 and adopted by the European Commission on 18/12/2014 taking into account 128 observations by its services.

This programme is part of the European cohesion policy, “Europe 2020” and falls within the scope of regional strategic plans such as the Regional Sustainable Development Plan (RSDP), the New Deal, the Employment-Environment Alliance and the Regional Plan for Innovation. It is designed to:

  • Support socio-economic development sectors that are promising in terms of local jobs for Brussels résidents;
  • Support innovation and activities that respond to Brussels’ issues;
  • Relocalise the economy for the citizens, including workers;
  • Work on improving the quality of life for Brussels résidents;
  • Promote short distribution channels, the service economy and industrial ecology;
  • En develop sustainable and innovative business models.

The programme has 4 priority areas:

Priority 1: Increase research and improve the transfer and promotion of innovation,

Priority 2: Strengthen entrepreneurship and improve the development of SMEs in promising industries,

Priority 3: Support the development of a circular economy through the rational use of resources in promising industries,

Priority 4: Improve the quality of life for deprived neighbourhoods and populations.

These priorities and groups of operations are described in detail in the Operational Program that you can read by downloading the attached document.

Modification of the Operationnal Program

Owing to several developments the initial Operational ERDF-program has been modified. 
Modification n° 1 principally relates to the creation of an intervention framework for operations aimed at the development of sanitary and social services for vulnerable groups, such as refugees, asylum seekers, undocumented migrants or persons without any administrative status,

Modification n° 2 has led to an additional support by ERDF, a new financial equilibrium between the different priority axes, and the splitting up of priority axe 3 (Supporting the development of a circular economy through the rational use of resources in promising industries) into two separate priority axes: one priority axe (axe 3) relating to the low carbon economy and another (axe 3bis) concerning the environment and the rational use of ressources as well as the adaptation of certain realisation indicators (direct results of the projects),

Modification n° 3 has resulted in a transfer of certain operations (development of green areas) to priority axe 3bis, the modification of several result indicators (contextual or impact indicators) in favour of more clear indicators, and the modification of the procedure for the selection of new projects in the frame of a specific call for projects.

2014-2020 Projects supported

The list of ERDF 2020 projects is below – Projects selected by the Government of the Brussels-Capital Region on 21/05/2015

Call for projects launched in June 2018
contributing to the improvement of energy efficiency in public buildings, with a twofold objective:
on the one hand, that of a reduction in the annual consumption of primary energy of public buildings,
-on the other hand, a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

A call for projects was launched on 21/06/2018 and closed on 9/11/2018.
A total of 65 applications were submitted and 12 projects were selected on 06/06/2019. The selected projects fall under Axis 3 – Specific Objective 3.2. Support the energy transition of public infrastructure and public housing.
The total amount of subsidies granted is € 4,773,238m.
Among the beneficiaries, we find 4 schools, 2 universities, 2 municipalities, 1 community institution, 1 hospital and 1 crematorium.

More Orientation notes (in Documents & Ressources)

Programming 2014 – 2020 News

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