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Innovation Eco-System in the CBC area (CBC INNOV8)

Enhancing competitiveness business trade and investment
Project Title
Innovation Eco-System in the CBC area (CBC INNOV8)
Type of Contract/Category
Grant contract
IPA Component/ (national or regional) Programming year
Cross-border Programme the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia – Republic of Albania under the instrument of Pre-accession Assistance (IPA II), allocations for 2014-2020
Lead applicant and co-applicants
· EuroPartners Development – Lead applicant National Agency of Scientific Research and Innovation (ARTI) – Co-applicant · Fund for Innovations and Technology Development (FITD) – Co-applicant · National Centre for Development of Innovation and Entrepreneurial Learning (NCDIEL) – Co-applicant

Albania and Macedonia are neighbouring countries, but the level of trade between them is the lowest. The cross-border Start-Ups and SMEs, apart from underdeveloped physical infrastructure, are characterized with high level of immigration and the existing businesses are on the lower scale of technological development and competitiveness. Whereas the educational institutions provide formal education, including curricula that support self-employment. On the other hand, genuine innovation-led programmes are absent, leaving many young people with no option but to look forward to working for someone else of outside the country. Also business often attribute the lack of quality of human resources to inappropriate or old-fashioned curricula at educational institutions. Besides the old mentioned infrastructure limiting communication in cross border area, there is a need to increase the link between education and business entities which will be enabled through this project. The business will benefit form utilizing the services of the innovation hub, either to cooperate with innovative Start-Ups funded through hub or directly access information that will bring about greater growth in target area. Whereas the higher education institutions will serve as a key driver for technological development of enterprises in every country, share weak knowledge at all sectors. “Entrepreneurial universities” may provide flexible educational curricula focusing mainly on technology utilization.

Abstract (short project summary)

This project consist in the establishment of innovation support infrastructure for transfer of know-how technologies among Start-Ups and SMEs in the CBC areas between Republic of Macedonia and Republic of Albania. The main purpose of the proposed action is to help establish, within the existing educational and businesses context, a CBC innovation eco-system for SMEs and Start-Ups by:

1. Strengthening capacities of key stakeholders in advancing competitiveness and know in the CBC areas.

2. Enhancing cross-sector cooperation between SMEs and Start-Ups by focusing in complementarity and utilizing the present and future business opportunities for joint ventures and offering perennial service.

3. Mainstreaming the established innovation eco-system from national to CBC areas.

This project will last 28 months from 01/01/2018 – 30/04/2020 and will be implemented by respective organizations as below:

Target groups of the project includes: universities, research centres, educational institutions as first level; Start-Ups in CBC areas as second level of target groups; and regional authorities, municipalities of the area where this project shall be implemented, chambers of commerce and local business representatives. The last group is considered as the third level of target groups.

This project is funded by the European Commission represented by Delegation of the European Union in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

Final beneficiary
Final beneficiaries are: Local residents in the target area of Ohrid, Macedonia and Korçë, Albania. Another wider group of final beneficiaries include all population in both countries due to economic impact from the more competitive Start-Ups and SMEs.
Action location/s
Ohrid, FYROM and Korçë, Albania
Contribuing in order to increase competitiveness and trade in CBC area, through facilitating transfer to know-how technologies amog Start-Ups and SMEs.

Activity Package 1:   Research on innovation potential & application of national innovation strategies


Activity Package 2: Establishment of cross-border and cross-sector innovation platform


Activity Package 3:  Launching of pilot CBC innovation hubs within universities


Activity Package 4:     Capacity building for CBC innovation stakeholders


Activity Package 5:      Sub-granting for CBC and joint venture SMEs


Activity Package 6: Promotion of new CBC innovation eco-system    between Macedonia and Albania


Planned outputs 1: Identified innovation related knowledge gaps and opportunities for transfer of know-how, technologies and innovations for Start-Ups and SMEs in CBC area.

Planned outputs 2: Developed a CBC cross-sector innovations platform for transfer of know-how & technologies among Start-Ups and SMEs.

Planned outputs 3: Enhanced capacity of CBC innovation stakeholders to organize effective innovation eco-system in CBC area with two CBC innovation hubs.

Planned outputs 4: Increased competitiveness of Start-Ups and SMEs in the CBC area.

Planned outputs 5: Increased competitiveness of Start-Ups and SMEs in the CBC area.

Facts & Figures

The key facts figures relevant to the project:

• Project duration: 28 months

• Start date of the project: 01/01/2018

• End date of the project   30/04/2021


• Cost of the action: 389028.69 €

• EU contribution: 330674.39 €

• EU contribution percentage: 85%

Final useful footnotes

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