Use grant support to realise your projects even during economic recession
The state has long supported business investments through various grants and incentives, i.e. not only in the times of crisis. However, it is particularly during these times that increased support can have significant impact on economic development. This year, the 2014–2020 programme period ends and grant programmes with an allocation of more than CZK 15 billion have been announced.
At the same time, the 2021 - 2027 programme period and the related operating programmes are being prepared. Furthermore, other forms of grant support to boost the economy are getting ready, such as the EU Recovery and Resilience Facility, the Just Transition Fundand the EU Modernisation Fund. Are you trying to find financial support for the realisation of your project goals in these uncertain times? We recommend considering support from the available grant programmes.
What are the possibilities of receiving EU public support?
Support can be obtained from several grant programmes focused on research and development, production or energy savings.
Research and Development (R&D)
There are several possibilities of receiving grant support to cover investment or operating costs in the R&D field, not only in Prague but also outside the capital. The supported areas include industrial research and experimental development projects which lead to particular outputs, implementing results in practice, product offers on the market, building or expanding industrial research, development and innovation centres, or projects developing new technologies, materials, increasing automation and robotic automation and the use of digital technologies. The support amounts to 25-70% of eligible costs, depending on the size of the business, type of activity or inclusion of other partners. The area of support may include the salaries of researches and technicians, as well as the acquisition of machinery and other equipment, intangible fixed assets, or the costs of technical improvement including new and existing buildings. Regardless of the regional scope of operations, a tax deduction on research and development, which is further described below, represents another interesting support option.
Production grants can be used to support projects for the implementation of new or innovated products, technologies or services into production and in the market. These may include e.g. the enhancement of technical and utility values of products, technologies and services or an increase in the production process or service provision efficiency. Another possibility is the support of projects with a strategy for further development of automation and digital transformation through the acquisition of new technologies linking information systems (current or new) or other implemented modules connecting all or most of the areas of business activities (production control, inventory, procurement, sales, finance or HR). Support can also be used for the purchase of production technologies, machinery and equipment, software and data or intellectual property rights. The support can amount up to CZK 75 million per project, and the amount of support depends on the size of the business and oscillates between 25–45% of eligible costs. For projects with a higher budget, investment incentives are an option. In both cases, public support can only be used for projects realised outside Prague.
The two main areas that are eligible for grant support include energy savings and the energy efficiency increase. The supported activities include energy intensity reduction of production and technology processes, renovation and modernisation of energy production facilities for own consumption, as well as electricity, gas and heat distribution systems with the aim of increasing their efficiency, or the modernisation of lighting systems for buildings and industrial premises. Furthermore, the support applies to installations of renewable energy or low-carbon sources, projects for the use of waste energy, renewal and decontamination of industrial locations or the retention of water, as well as other activities focusing on energy management. These grants can be combined. The support can amount to 50% of eligible costs; these can include e.g. machinery and equipment including the controlling software or the renovation/modernisation (technical improvement) of buildings.
In the area of ICT, support can be used for the acquisition of ICT products and services, including expert advisory services. The support should predominantly concern tangible and intangible fixed assets, such as hardware, servers or the necessary software, as well as the building of networks. The supported projects will predominantly include small and medium-sized businesses realised outside Prague.
Funds In the 2021-2027 programme period, funds will be available not only from the new operating programmes but also from the newly established funds, such as the Modernisation Fund, the Just Transition Fund, the Recovery and Resilience Facility) or the Innovation Fund. The support from these funds will be intended mainly for green projects in the area of environmental protection, such as the modernisation of energy systems and devices, clean mobility support, low-carbon technologies or research, development and innovation projects.