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The “Local development” Programme with overall budget EUR 117,6 million (from which EUR 100 million constitute fund of the EEA Financial Mechanism and Norwegian Financial Mechanism, and EUR 17,6 million – national contribution) is implemented by the Ministry of Development Funds and Regional Policy as the Programme Operator, in collaboration with the Programme Partner from Donor State: the Norwegian Association of Local and Regional Authorities (KS) and an international partner – The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

The Programme is a continuation of programmes in area of local development implemented with the support of two previous editions of EEA and Norway Grants. 

The aim of the „Local development” Programme is strengthening social and economic cohesion through improvement of quality of the environment, entrepreneurship, efficiency of public administration and living standards for all city residents (including disadvantaged groups) of small and medium size cities. 

The programme shall ensure a systemic approach to local development and poverty reduction. The support includes inter alia activities in the area of energy, environment, SMEs, business, education, housing improvement, employment, health components, transport management systems, public administration reform and support to local administration. 

The Programme is addressed to small and medium size cities, appointed by the Responsible Development Plan to the group of 255 cities having the hardest socio-economic situation. 

In the frame of the Programme the cities-applicants may apply for support for complex developmental projects (infrastructural or soft), including actions for strengthening/improving capacity of local administration.  

Support in the range of 3-10 million EUR will be allocated to approx. 15 complex projects taking into account the following aspects: 

  • environmental, as air quality improvement through lowering emission of harmful gases and dust, adaptation to climate changes, conversion into renewable energy sources, energy efficiency, low-emission public transport, etc.; 
  • social, as effective social and housing policy with particular attention to marginalized city areas, unemployment and poverty reduction, implementation of accessibility standards according Accessibility Plus Programme 2018-2025; limitation of economic migration to large urban centres, tackling the challenges in society aging, social innovations, etc.  
  • economic, inter alia support of entrepreneurship and local economy, strengthening of local labour market, especially in  relation to people entering/during adaptation to labour market. 

The Operator plans in the frame of the Programme:

  • 1 two-stage call for proposals

Stage I (in progress) – an open call was launched for project outlines. Evaluation of the applications is in progress. Selection of approx. 50 cities is planned; 

Stage  II – selection of approx. 15 projects for financing.

The Project may be implemented both in cross-sectoral and cross-self-government partnership (national and foreign – with entities from Donor States). Approx. 35 applicants, which are not chosen for financial support at the 2nd stage of the enrollment, will have a possibility to apply for financing actions aimed at improvement of accessibility standards in their cities, according to the assumptions of the Accessibility Plus Programme. The maximum value of such a grant amounts to PLN 100 000.

  • 1 predefined project aimed at strengthening the broadly-understood management capacities of Polish municipalities

The Project provides expert support for cities participating in the call, implementation of new management tools for Real Estate and finance in municipalities, updating strategic documents etc. The Project is implemented by the following entities: Association of Polish Cities, Norwegian Association of Local and Regional Authorities (KS), Institute of Urban and Regional Development (IRMiR) (before KIPPiM), OECD.