Non-repayable financing worth $9m for SMEs in Romania

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The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCTI) made an appeal for the submission of projects, within a programme of non-repayable financing worth over 20 million lei ($9 million), destined for the sector of small and medium-sized enterprises, MCTI reports.
 
The non-repayable financing programme "e-Growth!" is a sub-component of the Knowledgebased Economy funded by the World Bank and the Romanian Government and the appeal will be opened until November 24, 2008 at 2.00. p.m.
 
''We are going towards a society in which the old paradigm ''knowing means power'' gets the value of postulate. Without knowledge, education and free access to information, we have no chance in the global society. Romania has decisively entered this path, but not the entire society is at the same level. The project which we are managing aims to support underprivileged communities to benefit from the opportunities of the new technological developments, providing the prerequisites of a better life for all the inhabitants,'' said Communications and Information Technology Minister Karoly Borbely.
 
The e-Growth Programme is managed by MCTI through the management unit of knowledgebased economy project.
 
According to the manager of the project, Diana Voicu, the capitalisation of the financing oportunities by entrepreneurs depends on their rapid access to information, as well as on the level in which financing costs can cover needs of sustainable development of the business. ''These two landmarks, together with the flexibility of purchasing modern production installations along with information systems, were the main criteria in the structuring of the financing scheme. As an additional facility, we provide access to the documentation of the programme e-Growth and its promotion at local level including through the 255 communities enlisted with the Knowledge-based Economy programme,'' said Diana Voicu, manager of the Knowledge-based Economy project.
 
"e-Growth targets self-employed individuals, individual and family enterprises, small enterprises, small and medium-sized enterprises, associations which are activating in the agriculture field, cooperative companies, farm cooperatives, groups of producers.
 
The value of financing varies from 33,450 lei for self-employed individuals, enterprises and family enterprises, 223,000 lei for small and medium-sized enterprises and may reach up to 446,000 lei for the partnerships made up from one small or medium-sized enterprise (beneficiary) and a unit of public or private law (partners) attested to carry out activities of research-development.
 
The programme finances projects destined to improve competitiveness of Romanian companies on the internal market and on foreign markets, by the adoption of innovating technologies and ebusiness IT solutions.
 
The project management unit organised over June 17-July 3, six information seminars on e-Growth in Iasi, Bacau, Cluj-Napoca, Targu Mures, Timisoara and Bucharest."
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