Slovakia Signs Memos on Drawing €113 million from EEA/Norway Grants

Slovak Foreign and European Affairs Minister Miroslav Lajcak (right) and Norway's Minister of EEA and EU Affairs Elisabeth Vik Aspaker. (Photo by TASR)

Bratislava, November 28 (TASR) – Slovakia will be able to draw €113 million from the European Economic Area and Norway Grants until 2021 following the signing of relevant memos by Slovak Foreign and European Affairs Minister Miroslav Lajcak and Norway’s Minister of EEA and EU Affairs Elisabeth Vik Aspaker in Bratislava on Monday.

The EEA/Norway Grants involve funds from Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein.

“It’s a significantly higher amount than in the previous period. This money will be used to support enterprise and innovations, fight climate change, preserve cultural heritage, combat gender violence, support local development and Roma inclusion as well as transparency in the judiciary. A significant portion of the contributions will go into supporting civil society,” said Lajcak.

Slovakia has been drawing these funds since 2004, when it joined the EU, and it’s now entering the third programme period. More than 500 projects worth a total of €150 million were supported in the past two periods. The Slovak Government pays 15 percent of the projects’ costs.

Lajcak noted that Norway Funds have been used, for example, for restoring Devin Castle in Bratislava, the State Theatre in Kosice and the Reduta building in Bratislava. The latter hosted several events of the Slovak Presidency of the EU Council.

Aspaker described Slovak-Norwegian cooperation as “excellent”.

“Although Norway isn’t an EU member, we cooperate closely in many areas. Our dialogue has even been boosted during the Slovak presidency, with our relations now even stronger. I’m looking forward to further development of cooperation with our countries,” said the Norwegian minister, adding that Slovakia is one of the best countries when it comes to drawing funds.