EU-ACP Innovation Fund to unlock the Inclusive Innovation Potential of ACP Countries

Deadline: 29 January 2020

The European Union (EU) is currently accepting proposals from eligible organizations for its African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Innovation Fund.

The global objective of this call for proposals is to unlock the inclusive innovation potential of ACP countries and support their transition into knowledge-based economies for sustainable development and poverty reduction.

The specific objective of this call for proposals is to contribute to a conducive and inclusive environment for Research and Innovation in ACP countries.

The priorities of this call for proposals are:
  • To increase access to digital literacy, knowledge and use of emerging technologies;
  • To create or strengthen effective links between R&I skills development and labour market demand;
  • To establish or enable synergies in the research and innovation ecosystem, including with the private sector; facilitate conditions for technology transfer; promote R&I uptake;
  • To promote local and indigenous knowledge and its use in combination with formal knowledge systems and practices.
Actions can contribute to enhance the capacity of Research and Innovation stakeholders in ACP countries in any socio-economic sector.

Program Lots
The program is divided into six lots:
Lot 1 – Western Africa: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cabo Verde, Côte d’Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo.
Lot 2 – Eastern Africa: Burundi, Comoros Islands, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritius, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda.
Lot 3 – Central Africa: Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Sao Tome and Principe.
Lot 4 – Southern Africa: Angola, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
Lot 5 – Caribbean: Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago.
Lot 6 – Pacific: Cook Islands, East Timor, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Samoa, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu.
Size of Grants
Any grant requested under this call for proposals must fall between the following minimum and maximum amounts:
  • Minimum amount: EUR 4,000,000
  • Maximum amount: EUR 4,200,000
Eligibility Criteria
Lead applicant
In order to be eligible for a grant, the lead applicant must:
  • be a legal person and
  • be non-profit-making and
  • be established in one of the countries (listed above and member states of EU)
  • For British applicants: please be aware that eligibility criteria must be complied with for the entire duration of the grant. Unless sector-specific eligibility rules provide otherwise, if the United Kingdom withdraws from the EU during the grant period without concluding an agreement with the EU ensuring in particular that British applicants continue to be eligible, applicants will cease to receive EU funding (while continuing, where possible, to participate) or will be required to leave the project on the basis of the grant agreement.
  • This obligation does not apply to international organisations and
  • be directly responsible for the preparation and management of the action with the co-applicant(s) and affiliated entity(ies), not acting as an intermediary and
  • have experience in the management of research and innovation support funds with the following characteristics:
  • have awarded and managed at least two research and innovation grants (or other forms of financial support) with the following cumulative characteristics:
  • The grants were simultaneously implemented during the same reference period;
  • Each grant was implemented during the last five years (2014-2018);
  • Each grant was implemented in at least two ACP countries.
  • demonstrate an annual turnover or annual budget of at least EUR 1,500,000 for each financial year during the last three years (2016-2018) as demonstrated by the supporting documents
Actions must be implemented by a partnership between the lead applicant and at least two co-applicants. The partnership must comply with the following minimum criteria:
  • in addition to the lead applicant, the partnership must include at least two co-applicants, and
  • applicants (i.e. lead applicant and co-applicants) must be established in at least two different ACP countries
  • the number of applicants (i.e. lead applicant and co-applicants) established in the ACP countries must always be greater than the number of applicants (i.e. lead applicant and co-applicants) established in non-ACP countries.
  • Co-applicants participate in designing and implementing the action, and the costs they incur are eligible in the same way as those incurred by the lead applicant.
Affiliated Entities
The lead applicant and its co-applicant(s) may act with affiliated entity(ies).
Only the following entities may be considered as affiliated entities to the lead applicant and/or to co-applicant(s):
  • Only entities having a structural link with the applicants (i.e. the lead applicant or a co-applicant), in particular a legal or capital link.
  • This structural link encompasses mainly two notions:
  • Control, as defined in Directive 2013/34/EU on the annual financial statements, consolidated financial statements and related reports of certain types of undertakings:
  • Entities affiliated to an applicant may hence be:
  • Entities directly or indirectly controlled by the applicant (daughter companies or first-tier subsidiaries). They may also be entities controlled by an entity controlled by the applicant (granddaughter companies or second-tier subsidiaries) and the same applies to further tiers of control;
  • Entities directly or indirectly controlling the applicant (parent companies). Likewise, they may be entities controlling an entity controlling the applicant;
  • Entities under the same direct or indirect control as the applicant (sister companies).
  • Membership, i.e. the applicant is legally defined as a e.g. network, federation, association in which the proposed affiliated entities also participate or the applicant participates in the same entity (e.g. network, federation, association,…) as the proposed affiliated entities.
How to Apply
In order to apply for the grants, applicants have to register themselves in PADOR, an on-line database via given website.
For more information, please visit and download the guidelines.

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