Serbia spends 400 thousand euros for startups and smart centers

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The Government of Serbia will allocate funds from the budget for the program of support for the work of regional innovation startups and smart city centers in 2021. The total amount of state support is 400 thousand euros.
These new state programs will determine the goals, beneficiaries, purpose of funds, conditions for obtaining funds, financial framework, necessary documentation, method of selection of applications, method of application, conclusion of contracts and monitoring of the implementation of activities. By the way, the program itself is implemented by the Cabinet of Ministers without a portfolio in charge of innovations and technological development, and according to the approved project, funds in the maximum amount of 26 thousand euros will be allocated.
“The work of regional innovation startups and smart city centers creates conditions for the development of the startup community, and young entrepreneurs are provided with access to professional, mentoring, legal, advisory and logistical support for starting and running a business. Also, the new wave of technological innovations aimed at raising the capacity of cities and municipalities contributes to the construction of digitalized communities of the future – smart and safe cities,” it is stated in the announcement.
The general goal of this program is to improve the innovation ecosystem on the territory of Serbia by providing support to the work of regional innovation startup and smart city centers established through programs implemented in the period 2018-2020.
All local self-government units that have independently or in cooperation with the organization from the innovation ecosystem established the Regional Innovation Startup or Smart City Center through programs implemented in the period from 2018 to 2020 will have the right to use the grant.
The right to use non-refundable funds does not have the implementers of projects that have not justified the funds obtained on the basis of programs implemented in the period from 2018 to 2020. The funds received by local governments to support the work of regional innovation startups and smart city centers will be able to be used for the following purposes:
Technical and structural networking with other regional innovation startup and smart city centers, organizations recognized in the innovation ecosystem and universities, faculties and other educational institutions, implementation of work programs aimed at organizing trainings, education by experienced experts, providing mentoring support and implementation other activities that provide startups with access to funding sources, accounting and legal services, etc.
Procurement of startup center management services by management with previous experience in development and management of entrepreneurial enterprises, startup centers, innovation centers and other organizations or projects establishing the same funds cannot be used for: investment maintenance, construction works, procurement of equipment, furniture and devices, establishment and operation of individual startup companies, arrears of fees and taxes, loans and installments for loan repayment, costs of guarantees, insurance policies, interest, banking costs, exchange rate differences, customs costs, indirect and administrative costs, current costs, lending to third parties persons and other activities that are not in accordance with the purpose of the funds.
What are the conditions for obtaining funds?
The fulfillment of the conditions for the allocation of funds to startups will be determined by the Commission for evaluation of applications and monitoring of the realization of the program.
“In case the application is incomplete, the applicant will be notified to supplement the application within no less than five working days from the day of submitting the notification, and in order for the application to be considered at the session of the Commission. Notice of the required supplement to the application shall be sent to the applicant to the e-mail address indicated for contact in the Application Form. If he does not act upon the notification within the stated deadline, it will be considered that the application is not complete and will not be considered,” it is stated in the announcement.
There is also the possibility to perform additional verification of the submitted documentation, as well as to request additional information related to the project implementation plan and the planned project budget, before deciding on the submitted application, but only for the applicant who has met the formal requirements of the Program and competition, Nova reports.