In the context of the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF)1 and on the basis of the multi-annual work programme set out in Annex I of Commission Implementing Decision C(2017) 54372, a call for proposals is launched under the CEF Transport sector (general envelope).
This call for proposals addresses the following Funding Objective of the CEF Regulation:
Funding Objective 3: optimising the integration and interconnection of transport modes and enhancing the interoperability of transport services, while ensuring the accessibility of transport infrastructures.
2. OBJECTIVES AND PRIORITIES
This call for proposals addresses the priority Single European Sky – SESAR, as described in section 3.1.1 of the multi-annual work programme, of the Funding Objective 3 described above. In order to optimise Union funding and maximise its impact on the Single European Sky-SESAR priority, this call focuses on promoting actions, in particular "first mover" initiatives aiming to deploy new and mature technologies and practices supporting harmonised air traffic management (ATM) systems and standards. In this context, no further funding will be awarded for the implementation of information systems exchanging data between Air Traffic Control Centres that do not foster ground-ground communication technology and protocols for seamless flight operation across regions and national boundaries, until the relevant SESAR Solution (IOP) addressing the interoperability of ground systems, and the related standards, are developed, delivered and are mature for deployment.
Proposals shall be submitted under the "Common Projects" or "Other projects" categories defined in the multi-annual work programme referred to in section 1.
2.1 "Common Projects" category
a) Proposals for implementation projects that require the above mentioned IOP solution and related standards, in particular those projects aiming to implement ATM Functionalities (AF) Family 5.6.2 – Upgrade / Implement Flights Information Exchange system / service supported by Blue Profile and Family 6.1.2 – ATN B2 based services in ATSP domain identified in the SESAR deployment programme3, cannot be funded under this call.
b) Priority shall be given to proposals for implementation projects that aim to implement the following AF "families" identified in the SESAR deployment programme:
AF1- Extended arrival management and performance based navigation in the high density terminal manoeuvring areas:
- 1.1.2: AMAN upgrade to include Extended Horizon function
Proposals for implementation projects under this family must support the design and use of approach procedures (RNP APCH) and must include a plan through which existing legacy equipment – if any - used for approaches to those runways is decommissioned in accordance with Union law addressing PBN implementation. Grants will be limited to a maximum of EUR 25,000 per approach. Applications covering several runways and/or airports will be given priority.
AF2 – Airport integration and throughput
- 2.1.4: Airport Operations Plan (AOP)
AF3 – Flexible airspace management and free route
- 3.1.3: Full rolling ASM/ATFCM process and ASM information sharing AF4 – Network collaborative management
- 4.2.4: AOP/NOP information sharing
AF5 – Initial system wide information management
- 5.1.3: Common SWIM Infrastructure components
- 5.1.4:Common SWIM PKI and cyber security
- 5.2.2: Stakeholders SWIM Infrastructures Components
AF6 – Initial trajectory information sharing
In the framework of this call, the Commission aims at continuing the implementation of the Datalink (DLS) recovery plan4 developed by the SESAR Deployment Manager. Consequently, priority will be given to implementation projects aiming to implement datalink capability in support to AF6 Initial Trajectory Information Sharing. These projects shall be implemented in accordance with the DLS recovery plan.
6.1.3: Air/Ground and Ground/Ground Multi-Frequency Datalink Network in defined European Service Areas:
Considering the provisions in the Regulation (EU) No 310/2015, in particular the deadline for ground implementation by 5 February 2018, the priority is to finalise the definition and initiate the implementation of the Model D. Consequently, proposals for implementation projects aiming at implementing Model B or Model C Multi-Frequency will not be eligible under the present call for proposals. Furthermore, applicants are invited to join their efforts within a limited number of implementation projects.
6.1.4: ATN B1 capability in Multi Frequency environment in aircraft domain:
Under this family, priority will be given to implementation projects aiming to fit or retrofit aircraft with DLS avionics as identified in the DLS recovery plan. The project’s description shall confirm that the avionics to be implemented will be multi-frequency capable and will include the latest software version available from the supplier.
2.2 "Other projects" category
Priority for this category will be given to:
a) Actions that support airborne infrastructure (fixed wing and rotorcraft) for the use of Satellite Based Augmentation System (SBAS), in particular the European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS), in the context of the implementation of Union law addressing Performance Based Navigation (PBN).
b) Actions that support the design and use of 3D approach procedures (RNP APCH, fixed wing and rotorcraft) including LPV and LNAV/VNAV minima in accordance with Union law addressing PBN implementation at airports that do not fall under Part 1.2 of the Annex to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 716/2014 (Pilot Common Project). The proposed actions must include a plan through which existing legacy equipment – if any - used for approaches to those runways is decommissioned in accordance with Union law addressing PBN implementation. Grants will be limited to a maximum of EUR 25,000 per approach. Applications covering several runways and/or airports will be given priority.
c) Actions that support equipage of existing aircraft fleet with 8.33 KHz radios. Regulations (EC) No 1265/2007 and (EU) No 1079/2012 require the conversion of at least one radio per aircraft to have the capacity to operate on the 8.33 KHz channel spacing. Proposals may be submitted by applicants falling under the provisions of Article 2(4) and 5(4) of the mentioned Regulation and covered by the exemptions granted by the Member States as provided for in its Article 14(2). The grant will be limited to 20% of the total cost of radio conversion, including both equipment procurement and installation costs.
d) Actions that support the implementation of "ADS-B out" in accordance with Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 1207/2011 laying down requirements for the performance and the interoperability of surveillance for the single European sky and further amendments, in particular the equipage of aircraft fleet. Actions including the use of EGNOS capable receivers and/or addressing more demanding use cases shall be given priority.
e) Actions that support the implementation of European Wake Vortex Re-categorisation (RECAT-EU) in accordance with Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 923/2012 (SERA).
2.3 Common provisions for both categories
Priority shall be given to Actions or parts of Actions: that most contribute to ATM performance; or that are organised at FAB level; or that promote Union-wide, inter-FAB or civil-military coordination; or that address effective change management; or that create new employment opportunities or strengthen the use of EGNOS and Galileo in line with the European Commission Space Strategy for Europe; or that promote rationalisation or sharing of infrastructure.
2.4 Type of Actions
A proposal submitted under this call must address either works or studies, within the meaning of Article 2(5) and (6) of the CEF Regulation. Proposals may combine studies and works as long as the respective activities and related budget are clearly defined and separated.
The type(s) of actions to be funded are further specified in the description of the specific priority in section 3.1.1 of the multi-annual work programme.
In accordance with Article 2(6) of the CEF Regulation, studies may include pilot activities that will serve at least one of the following objectives:
- to develop, improve or adapt a new technology or an innovative solution and implement it in order to test its feasibility and suitability as well as its added value before deploying it on a larger scale;
The pilot activities of a study may include the deployment of a certain type of infrastructure or technology but on a limited scale and at a reasonable price and with the objective of testing and validating the viability of the innovative actions proposed for future scale up and roll out. Pilot activities of a study should be of an experimental nature and designed to test the feasibility of an innovative action and its usefulness for future large scale implementation. They should not be associated with research activities that are not covered by this call.
2.5 Financial support to third parties
Where a proposed Action entails financial support to third parties, these are subject to additional requirements pursuant to Article 137 of the Financial Regulation5, in particular, the beneficiary may give financial support to third parties subject to the following:
the maximum amount to be granted to each third party and the criteria for determining the exact amount;
the types of activities that may receive such financial support on the basis of a fixed list;
definition of the third parties or categories of third parties that may receive such financial support and the criteria for giving it, including the award procedure as well as how the principles of transparency and equal treatment and the provisions of Article 9 of the CEF Regulation will be ensured.
Indicatively, 80% of the funding available under Priority "Single European Sky - SESAR" shall be dedicated to projects selected under the "Common Projects" category. However, the final allocation of funding may be adjusted between "Common Projects" and "Other Projects" categories depending on the actual funding needs of the selected Actions, while giving priority to the implementation of Common Projects.
Funding shall not be granted for Actions or parts of Actions addressing obligations under Union Law, in particular relating to the SES, whose deadline for implementation has expired by the date on which this call is published. In any case, costs for such Actions shall not be eligible after the above-mentioned deadline for implementation.
Increasing the opportunities for private investment to support TEN-T projects is an overarching objective of CEF Transport programme. Applicants are reminded to take due account of possibilities to increase the use of private finance, e.g. project bonds or public- private partnerships (PPPs). This should be demonstrated in the application.
Moreover, the European Investment Bank (EIB) is collaborating closely with the SESAR Deployment Manager to support the deployment of Common Projects. Applicants are encouraged to explore through this collaboration the possibilities offered by EIB to provide tailored financing products to all aviation stakeholders.
3. RESULTS EXPECTED FROM THE FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE
The results expected under this call are defined in Section 4 of the work programme.
4. INDICATIVE BUDGET
The indicative amount to be allocated on the basis of this call for proposals to projects of common interest in the specified area is EUR 290 million under Funding Objective 3, Single European Sky – SESAR priority.
Date of publication of call for proposals
6 October 2017
Deadline for the submission of proposals
15 March 2018 (17:00:00 Brussels time)
Deadline for the submission of translations (if applicable)
22 March 2018
Evaluation of proposals
March-May 2018 (indicative)
Consultation of CEF Coordination Committee; information of European Parliament
June 2018 (indicative)
Adoption of Selection Decision
July 2018 (indicative)
Signature of individual grant Agreements
As of August 2018 (indicative)
6. ADMISSIBILITY REQUIREMENTS
Proposal must be:
submitted electronically in the TENtec Information System eSubmission module. In this respect, proposals or part(s) of proposals submitted by email or in hard copy shall not be admissible.
submitted by the deadline for submission of proposals (see sections 5. 'Timetable' and 14.2. 'Submission process').
complete (i.e. application form part A, B, C and D are uploaded in the TENtec).
duly signed by the applicant(s).
Failure to comply with any of these requirements will lead to the rejection of the application.
7. ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA
7.1 Eligible applicants
In accordance with section 6.1 of the Multi-annual Work Programme and pursuant to Article 9 of the CEF Regulation, only those proposals submitted by one of the following types of applicants are eligible:
One or more Member States;
With the agreement of the Member State(s) concerned, international organisations, joint undertakings, or public or private undertakings or bodies established in an EU Member State.
For British applicants: Please be aware that eligibility criteria must be complied with for the entire duration of the grant. 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, you will cease to receive EU funding (while continuing, where possible, to participate) or be required to leave the project on the basis of Article II.16.3.1 (a) (change of the legal situation of the beneficiary) of the grant agreement.
Neighbouring/Third countries and entities established in neighbouring/third countries
Neighbouring/third countries and entities established in neighbouring/third countries may participate in actions contributing to projects of common interest where necessary in order to achieve the objectives of a given project of common interest. They may not receive financial assistance except where it is indispensable to the achievement of the objectives of a given project of common interest.
In such cases and pursuant to Article 8(1) of the TEN-T Guidelines6, applications may be presented by neighbouring countries or entities established in neighbouring countries, with the agreement of a Member State concerned.
Applicants without legal personality
Proposals may be submitted by entities which do not have legal personality under the applicable national law, provided that their representatives have the capacity to undertake legal obligations on their behalf and offer guarantee for the protection of the Union's financial interests equivalent to that offered by legal persons.
Proposals submitted by natural persons are not eligible.
Applicants may designate affiliated entities within the meaning of Article 122(2)(b) of the Financial Regulation, for the purpose of supporting the implementation of the action submitted for funding. Such affiliated entities shall comply with the eligibility criteria for applicants as specified in Section 7.1 of the multi-annual work programme.
Member State agreement
Any applicant that cannot provide the agreement of the Member State concerned shall not be eligible.
7.2 Exclusion criteria
In line with Article 106 of the Financial Regulation and Article 141 of the Rules of Application,7 an applicant will be excluded from participating in the call for proposals procedure if it is in any of the following situations:
(a) it is bankrupt, subject to insolvency or winding up procedures, its assets are being administered by a liquidator or by a court, it is in an arrangement with creditors, its business activities are suspended or it is in any analogous situation arising from a similar procedure provided for under national legislation or regulations;
(b) it has been established by a final judgement or a final administrative decision that it is in breach of its obligations relating to the payment of taxes or social security contributions in accordance with the law of the country in which it is established, with those of the country in which the authorising officer is located or those of the country of the performance of the contract;
(c) it has been established by a final judgement or a final administrative decision that it is guilty of grave professional misconduct by having violated applicable laws or regulations or ethical standards of the profession to which the entity belongs, or by having engaged in any wrongful conduct which has an impact on its professional credibility where such conduct denotes wrongful intent or gross negligence, including, in particular, any of the following:
fraudulently or negligently misrepresenting information required for the verification of the absence of grounds for exclusion or the fulfilment of selection criteria or in the performance of a contract, a grant agreement or a grant decision;
entering into agreement with other persons with the aim of distorting competition;
violating intellectual property rights;
attempting to influence the decision-making process of the Commission/ the Agency during the award procedure;
attempting to obtain confidential information that may confer upon it undue advantages in the award procedure;
(d) it has been established by a final judgement that it is guilty of the following:
fraud, within the meaning of Article 1 of the Convention on the protection of the European Communities' financial interests, drawn up by the Council Act of 26 July 1995;
corruption, as defined in Article 3 of the Convention on the fight against corruption involving officials of the European Communities or officials of EU Member States,
drawn up by the Council Act of 26 May 1997, and in Article 2(1) of Council Framework Decision 2003/568/JHA, as well as corruption as defined in the legal provisions of the country where the authorising officer is located, the country in which the entity is established or the country of the performance of the contract;
participation in a criminal organisation, as defined in Article 2 of Council Framework Decision 2008/841/JHA;
money laundering or terrorist financing, as defined in Article 1 of Directive 2005/60/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council;
terrorist-related offences or offences linked to terrorist activities, as defined in Articles 1 and 3 of Council Framework Decision 2002/475/JHA, respectively, or inciting, aiding, abetting or attempting to commit such offences, as referred to in Article 4 of that Decision;
child labour or other forms of trafficking in human beings as defined in Article 2 of Directive 2011/36/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council;
(e) it has shown significant deficiencies in complying with the main obligations in the performance of a contract, a grant agreement or a grant decision financed by the Union’s budget, which has led to its early termination or to the application of liquidated damages or other contractual penalties, or which has been discovered following checks, audits or investigations by an Authorising Officer, OLAF or the Court of Auditors;
(f) it has been established by a final judgment or final administrative decision that it has committed an irregularity within the meaning of Article 1(2) of Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 2988/95;
(g) for the situations of grave professional misconduct, fraud, corruption, other criminal offences, significant deficiencies in the performance of the contract or irregularity, it is subject to:
facts established in the context of audits or investigations carried out by the Court of Auditors, OLAF or internal audit, or any other check, audit or control performed under the responsibility of an authorising officer of an EU institution, of a European office or of an EU agency or body;
non-final administrative decisions which may include disciplinary measures taken by the competent supervisory body responsible for the verification of the application of standards of professional ethics;
decisions of the ECB, the EIB, the European Investment Fund or international organisations;
decisions of the Commission relating to the infringement of the Union's competition rules or of a national competent authority relating to the infringement of Union or national competition law;
decisions of exclusion by an authorising officer of an EU Institution, of a European office or of an EU agency or body.
If an applicant/affiliated entity declares one of the situations of exclusion listed above, it should indicate the measures it has taken to remedy the exclusion situation, thus demonstrating its reliability. This may include e.g. technical, organisational and personnel measures to prevent further occurrence, compensation of damage or payment of fines. The relevant documentary evidence which illustrates the remedial measures taken must be provided in annex to the declaration. This does not apply for situations referred in point (d) above.
Rejection from the call for proposals
Grants will not be awarded to applicants who:
a) are in an exclusion situation established in accordance with the list above8;
b) have misrepresented the information required as a condition for participating in the procedure or has failed to supply that information;
c) were previously involved in the preparation of calls for proposal documents where this entails a distortion of competition that cannot be remedied otherwise.
These same exclusion criteria also apply to affiliated entities. Applicants and their affiliated entities, if applicable, must certify that they are not in one of the situations listed above.
Administrative and financial penalties may be imposed on applicants, or affiliated entities where applicable, who are guilty of misrepresentation.
7.3 Eligible actions
General eligibility criteria
Only actions which can be identified as projects of common interest as defined in Article 7 of the TEN-T Guidelines and which address projects or horizontal priorities listed in Part I of Annex I of the CEF Regulation are eligible under this call.
Pursuant to Article 10 of the CEF Regulation and in view of assessing the socio-economic and financial viability of the proposed actions, all proposals for works or including both studies and works must be accompanied by a Cost-Benefit Analysis (CBA), presented as a stand-alone document proposing the co-funding rate requested for the action, while taking into account the maximum funding rates stipulated in the CEF Regulation. Proposals submitted under the "Common Projects" category can replace a full Cost-Benefit Analysis by a Cost-Effectiveness Analysis (CEA). Member States are asked to confirm in the application form that a methodology recognised in the respective national context has been used. Cohesion Policy methodology for Cost-Benefit Analysis is recommended9. The CBA or CEA must be clearly identified as such. A proposed Action which concerns a part or a section of a larger project of common interest may be covered by a socio-economic CBA, which includes a financial analysis, for this larger project of common interest.
For Actions generating net revenue, the CBA must be accompanied by a calculation of the "funding gap", i.e. the part of the Action's costs that are not covered by net revenue. In the context of this call for proposals, the modulated co-funding rate to be requested shall be the product between the funding gap rate and the maximum co-funding allowed for the priority.
Pursuant to Article 22(3) of the CEF Regulation, with a view to monitoring the achievement of climate-change objectives, selected proposals subject to CBA may be designated on the basis of a sampling method to perform an ex-post climate change impact assessment of the proposed Action. For this purpose, applications for works should include an estimate of the costs of such climate change impact assessment. These costs will be considered as studies and will benefit from a co- funding rate of up to 50%. The payment of the balance after the completion of the action will be conditional upon the submission of the completed climate change impact assessment.
8. SELECTION CRITERIA
The selection criteria are detailed in section 7 of the multi-annual work programme. The operational and financial capacity of applicants will be assessed as specified below.
The requirement for applicants to demonstrate their operational and financial capacity does not apply to applicants which are:
a Member State;
a neighbouring/third country;
a public sector body established in a Member State (e.g. a regional or local authority, a body governed by public law or an association formed by one or several such authorities or one or several such bodies governed by public law);
an international organisation10;
a European Economic Interest Grouping (EEIG) established in line with Council Regulation (EEC) N° 2137/85 of 25 July 1985, in which at least one member is a public body, or
a Joint Undertaking in line with eligibility criteria established under Article 187 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.
The requirement to demonstrate operational and financial capacity also applies to affiliated entities only where, according to the proposal, the affiliated entity(ies) will be the only one(s) implementing the proposed Action.
8.1 Financial capacity
The applicant(s) must have stable and sufficient sources of funding to maintain the proposed activities throughout the period during which the action is being carried out and to participate in its funding.
Together with the application, applicant(s) must provide their financial statements certified by an external auditor for the last financial year for which the accounts have been closed.
If an applicant has been operating for less than one financial year, the financial statements may be replaced by a letter of support obtained from a third party (e.g. the applicant's parent company) or by another applicant of the proposed Action, accompanied by the financial statements of the party providing the support. The template for such letter of support is available in the form to be completed for the financial capacity check.
8.2 Operational capacity
The applicant(s) must have the operational and technical competencies and capacity required to complete the Action for which the grant is sought and must provide appropriate documents and information attesting to that capacity, such as:
description of the profile of the people primarily responsible for managing and implementing the operation (e.g. accompanied by curriculum vitae);
the organisations’ activity reports for at least the last year;
a list of previous Actions and activities performed in the field of TEN-T infrastructure
Actions of the same kind;
an inventory of the technical equipment, tools or facilities and patents at the disposal of the applicant and relevant for the Action.
If compliant with the abovementioned requirements, the information submitted by applicants who benefited from TEN-T support as from 2004 or CEF support as from 2014 may be taken into account in the evaluation of these applicants' operational capacity.
9. AWARD CRITERIA
Proposals failing to comply with the admissibility and/or eligibility criteria will not be further evaluated.
The award criteria are specified in Section 8 of the multi-annual work programme. For the purpose of the evaluation, these criteria are specified as follows:
Relevance. This refers to the contribution of the proposed Action to the TEN-T priorities as laid out in the TEN-T Guidelines, the funding priorities as laid down in the CEF Regulation and specific priorities and objectives described in the work programme and addressed by the call for proposals.
In addition, the following aspects will be assessed under relevance as applicable:
- the European added value as defined in point (d) of Article 3 of the TEN-T Guidelines;
- removal of bottlenecks, enhancing rail interoperability, bridging missing links and improving cross-border sections as stipulated in the CEF Regulation;
- the cross-border dimension, when applicable;
Maturity. This refers to the state of preparation of the proposed Action and the readiness to start the implementation of the proposed activities. This will be determined by the degree of financial readiness and completion of preparatory steps as well as the conditions required for the start of the proposed Action. In particular the maturity of the Action in the project development will be assessed. Where the same proposal combines works and studies, the dependence of the works on the completion of the studies will also be taken into consideration. Proposed Actions that have received political commitments, completed a number of administrative procedures and committed financial resources, as well as proposed Actions which involve the final steps of implementation, can be considered as demonstrating strong maturity. Maturity will also be evidenced by low uncertainty/risks about the start of the Action. Proposed Actions should be ready to start, at the latest, within eighteen months after the closure of the call. When relevant, the readiness of the technology for deployment will also be considered under this criterion.
Applicants are requested to answer to all the applicable questions in the application forms in order to provide relevant information for assessing the above blocks of award criteria.
Each block of award criteria will be given a score on a scale from 0 (insufficient) to 5 (excellent). A proposal must obtain at least 3 points for each block of award criteria to be recommended for funding.
When it is considered that a proposal is more relevant to a category ("Common projects" category or "Other projects" category) other than that under which it was submitted under this call, the Commission services may propose to transfer the proposal to the category in question. Such transfer is only carried out during the phase of evaluation of the proposals, provided that: (i) the proposal is eligible under the conditions of the category to which it is proposed to be transferred; and (ii) there is written agreement of the applicant(s). In such case, the funding conditions of the category to which a proposal has been transferred shall apply. Such transfer shall not include any
other modifications in the proposal. The transfer of a given proposal does not prejudge the results of its evaluation.
10. FINAL SELECTION PROCESS
During the final selection process, the Commission will in particular take into account the following aspects, as appropriate:
The contribution of the proposed Action to the balanced development of the network,
The complementarity of the proposed Action with other EU funded projects, in view of
optimising the impact of investments already made in the region/country/global project,
The comparative EU added value (high, medium, low) of the proposed Action in relation to other proposed Actions, taking into account the respective Cost-Benefit Analysis where appropriate,
Any identified/identifiable risks of double-funding from other Union sources,
Potential synergies across the different CEF sectors and/or other EU Programmes, notably Horizon 2020, where particular consideration shall be given to Actions involving the deployment of innovation and technology developed under the Union's research programmes,
In exceptional and duly justified cases, and on the basis of the above-mentioned aspects, the Commission may recommend for funding a proposal that has obtained less than 3 points in one or more blocks of award criteria. In the same way, it may decide to not recommend for funding a proposal that has obtained at least 3 points for each block of award criteria.
11. COMPLIANCE WITH EU LAW
In accordance with Article 23 of the CEF Regulation, only actions in conformity with EU law and which are in line with the relevant EU policies, in particular, in the areas of competition, protection of the environment11, state aid and public procurement, shall be financed.
12. FINANCIAL PROVISIONS
12.1 General principles
12.1.1 Other sources of financing
Pursuant to Article 129 of the Financial Regulation, no EU financial aid will be awarded to
actions receiving funds from other sources of EU financing. Under no circumstances will the same costs be financed twice by the EU budget.
In that respect, any proposed Action or part thereof that receive or have already received EU funding under the CEF other EU Programmes (i.e. TEN-T, Marco Polo II, Cohesion Fund, FP7, Horizon 2020, ESIF, etc.) will not be funded under this call.
12.1.2 Non-profit principle
In accordance with Article 125 of the Financial Regulation, grants shall not have the purpose or effect of producing a profit within the framework of the proposed Action. Where a profit is made, the Commission shall be entitled to recover the percentage of the profit corresponding to the EU contribution to the eligible costs actually incurred by the beneficiary to carry out the proposed Action12.
Pursuant to Article 130 of the Financial Regulation, no grants may be awarded retrospectively for actions already completed. A grant may be awarded for an action which has already begun provided that the applicant(s) can demonstrate the need for starting the action prior to the signature of the grant agreement.
12.2 Funding form
Grants to be awarded further to this call for proposals will take the form of reimbursement of a specified proportion of the eligible costs actually incurred.
12.2.1 Co-funding rates
In line with Article 10(2) of the CEF Regulation, the EU financial assistance to be granted under this call for proposals cannot exceed the rates referred to in section 9.1 of the multi-annual work programme:
(a) with regard to grants for studies, 50% of the eligible costs;
(b) with regard to grants for telematic applications systems and services:
(i) for land-based components of the SESAR system: 50% of the eligible costs;
(ii) for on-board components of the SESAR system: 20% of the eligible costs, up to a combined ceiling of 5% of the budgetary resources referred to in point (a) of Article 5(1) of the CEF regulation;
In line with Article 10(5) of the CEF Regulation, these co-funding rates may be increased by up to 10 percentage points for actions with synergies between transport and at least one other sector covered by the CEF Regulation, which address the priorities of Article 4 of the CEF Regulation.
The Commission reserves the right to award a grant of less than the amount requested by the applicant.
In order to ensure efficiency in EU funding interventions, applicants are strongly encouraged to submit applications for actions with a total requested EU contribution to the eligible costs of no less than €500,000 for studies and no less than €1,000,000 for works. Where possible, related
12 In the meaning of Article 125 of the Financial Regulation, profit shall be defined as a surplus of the receipts over the eligible costs incurred by the beneficiary, when the request is made for payment of the balance. actions should be grouped and submitted as one proposal.
12.2.2 Eligible costs
Eligible costs are costs actually incurred by the beneficiary of a grant which meet all the criteria laid down in Article 126(2) of the Financial Regulation.
The beneficiary's internal accounting and auditing procedures must permit direct reconciliation of the costs and revenue declared in respect of the action with the corresponding accounting statements and supporting documents.
The same criteria apply to the costs incurred by affiliated entities and implementing bodies designated by the beneficiary.
Applicants should refer to points (3) to (8) of Article 8 of the CEF Regulation concerning the eligibility of costs. The full costs of purchase of equipment and infrastructure which are treated as capital expenditure are eligible under this call, provided that they are:
treated as capital expenditure in accordance with the tax and accounting rules applicable to the beneficiary;
recorded in the fixed assets account of the beneficiary's balance sheet; and
purchased in accordance with the procurement rules as specified in Article II.9 of the
model grant agreement.
Costs will be eligible, at the earliest, from the date on which an application is submitted and, at the latest, to the date of completion of the Action, which should be 31 December 2023 at the latest.
Indirect costs of the action are those costs which are not specific costs directly linked to the implementation of the action and can therefore not be attributed directly to it.
Indirect costs are not eligible.
In line with the first subparagraph of Article 8(7) of the CEF Regulation and Article 126(3)(c) of the Financial Regulation, VAT paid by beneficiaries of grants awarded following this call for proposals is eligible except:
deductible VAT (VAT paid by the beneficiary for the implementation of taxed activities or exempt activities with right of deduction);
Financial support to third parties
Applications may envisage provision of financial support to third parties, subject to the fulfilment of the requirements specified in section 2.
Detailed information on eligible and ineligible costs is included in the model grant agreement, which is available on the call website.
12.2.3 Payment arrangements
A first pre-financing payment corresponding to 40% of the first instalment of grant awarded as specified in the grant agreement will be transferred to the beneficiary within 30 days after the last party signs the grant agreement.
Further pre-financing payments may be made upon request and in accordance with the financial needs of the Action.
Requests for interim payments must be submitted at least every two years.
The cumulative amount of all pre-financing and interim payments shall not exceed 80% of the maximum amount of the financial aid awarded.
However, in those cases where the low complexity of the Action may require a simpler payment arrangement, the following payment arrangements may be provided for: a single pre-financing payment corresponding to 40% of the maximum grant amount awarded will be made within 30 days after the last party signs the grant agreement. No interim payment may be made.
In the event that the beneficiary's financial capacity is not satisfactory, the pre-financing payment(s) may be subject to the receipt of a financial guarantee for up to the same amount as the pre-financing payment to be made.
The financial guarantee, in euro, shall be provided by an approved bank or financial institution established in one of the EU Member States. When the beneficiary is established in a third country, INEA may agree that a bank or financial institution established in a third country may provide the guarantee if the bank or financial institution is considered to offer equivalent security and characteristics as those offered by a bank or financial institution established in a Member State. Amounts blocked in bank accounts will not be accepted as financial guarantees.
The guarantee may be replaced by a joint or several guarantees provided by third parties or by a joint guarantee of the beneficiaries of an action that are parties to the same grant agreement. The guarantee will be released when the pre-financing is cleared against the interim payment, if applicable, and/or the balance of payment(s) made, in accordance with the conditions laid down in the grant agreement.
In the event that the beneficiary's financial capacity is not satisfactory, a limited joint and several financial liability for recoveries may be applied in accordance with the terms and conditions of the model grant agreement.
The final amount of the grant to be awarded to the beneficiary is established after completion of the Action, upon approval of the request for payment including, where applicable, the supporting documents as described in the model grant agreement.
For multi-beneficiary actions, a coordinator must be designated. The coordinator will be the contact point for INEA and will have, inter alia, the responsibility for receiving the payment(s) and coordinating the reporting exercise(s). It is strongly recommended that beneficiaries sign an internal cooperation agreement regarding their operation and coordination, including all internal aspects related to the management of the beneficiaries and the implementation of the proposed Action. Such internal cooperation agreements shall not undermine, under any circumstances, the terms and conditions of the model grant agreement.
13. MODEL GRANT AGREEMENT
Applicant(s) will be invited to sign a grant agreement drawn up in euro and detailing the conditions and level of CEF funding, if a proposal is selected for funding. The standard model grant agreement is not negotiable and will be signed in English.
Submitting an application implies the acceptance of the terms and conditions of the model grant agreement, available on the call page. Applicants are invited to carefully read this document and its annexes before submitting an application.
Grants for Actions for the implementation of Common Projects of the "Single European Sky– SESAR" priority under Funding Objective 3, will be awarded through Specific Grant Agreements established under the SESAR Deployment Framework Partnership Agreement. The Deployment Manager13 is to act as coordinator in each of these Actions. Applicants who are awarded a grant under this call and are not partners in the SESAR Deployment Framework Partnership will be required to join the SESAR Deployment Framework Partnership, as partners, by signing the Framework Partnership Agreement before being able to sign the Specific Grant Agreements covering their Actions.
14. PROCEDURE FOR SUBMISSION OF PROPOSALS
All practical information on this call for proposals and the evaluation process is detailed in the Guide for Applicants. It is available, together with the application forms, model grant agreement, the multi-annual work programme, the CEF Regulation, the TEN-T Guidelines, and other relevant documents, on the call page, accessible via this link:
Applicants are requested to carefully read all call-related documents, including the instructions given in the Guide for Applicants and other guidance documents and information, in particular the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ).
14.1 Application forms
Proposals must be submitted using the application forms provided on the call page at the link above. Applicants are strongly encouraged to submit their applications in the English language as the evaluation of proposals is entirely conducted in English.
Notwithstanding, applicants also have the possibility to submit their proposal, including the CBA/CEA, in another EU official language together with an English translation14. The latter will be used for the evaluation.
Proposals must be signed by the applicant(s) or its duly authorised representative and must be perfectly legible so that there can be no doubt as to words and figures. Advanced electronic signatures based on a qualified certificate as defined by Regulation 910/2014 on electronic identification and trust services for electronic transactions in the internal market (eIDAS Regulation) and which comply with the signature formats specified in Commission Implementing Decision 2015/1506 shall be accepted.
The applicant(s) specified in the application form part A will automatically be considered as the beneficiary(ies) if the proposal is selected for funding. If applicants designate affiliated entities within the meaning of Article 122 of the Financial Regulation to support the implementation of the proposed Action, the information on these affiliated entities must be encoded in the application form Part A, and any relevant supporting documents must be provided.
14.2 Submission process
Proposals must be submitted electronically using the TENtec eSubmission module, accessible via the following link: https://webgate.ec.europa.eu/tentec/grant/esubmission/ before the call deadline: Thursday, 15 March 2018 at 17:00 Brussels time (see also Section 6. "Admissibility requirements").
Application form part A is automatically generated by the eSubmission module. Application form parts B, C and D must be downloaded from the call page at the link above and duly completed. Once final, these must be uploaded into the TENtec eSubmission module. The same applies to any annexes or supporting documents accompanying the proposal.
Applicants' attention is drawn to the fact that for application form part A, only the information encoded in the TENtec eSubmission module will be taken into account for the evaluation (notwithstanding the requirement to upload signed versions of application forms part A2.2 and A2.3). For the other forms and documents, only the last version uploaded in the TENtec eSubmission module will be taken into account for the evaluation.
Any parts of the application form that require signatures of applicants or relevant authorities must be scanned and uploaded into the TENtec eSubmission module. Applicants must be able to provide the original documents and send them to the Commission/Agency services upon request.
Advanced electronic signatures based on a qualified certificate as defined by Regulation 910/2014 on electronic identification and trust services for electronic transactions in the internal market (eIDAS Regulation) and which comply with the signature formats specified in Commission Implementing Decision 2015/1506 will be accepted. If a document is e-signed, a printable version of the document must be uploaded in the TENtec eSubmission module.
15. INFORMATION FOR APPLICANTS
Further information or clarifications on the call for proposals will be published on the call webpage. Please refer to all of the following documents, available on the call webpage, when preparing the application:
2017 MAP Work Programme
Application form (Parts A, B, C and D)
Guide for Applicants
FAQs published on the call page
Model grant agreement
SESAR Deployment Framework Partnership Agreement
EU Financial Regulation and Rules of application
Commission Decision on the reimbursement of personnel costs15
Cohesion Policy CBA methodology
Applicants are recommended to consult the webpage and the INEA website/Twitter feed (@inea_eu) regularly until the deadline for submission of proposals.
Questions related to this call must be addressed to the call helpdesk: INEA-CEFfirstname.lastname@example.org.
The answers to submitted questions will be published in a FAQ list on the call page, to ensure equal treatment of all potential applicants. Questions related to the call should be submitted at the latest by 1 March 2018 to ensure sufficient time for the last update of the FAQs by 8 March 2018. However, individual technical questions related to TENtec eSubmission module will be treated until the call deadline.
Questions which are specific to a particular proposal and where the answer would provide a comparative advantage to the applicant will not be answered.
Please note that proposals must not be sent to the helpdesk e-mail address.
16. PROCESSING OF PERSONAL DATA
The reply to any call for proposals involves the recording and processing of personal data (such as name, address and CV). Such data will be processed pursuant to Regulation (EC) No 45/2001 on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data by the Community institutions and bodies and on the free movement of such data.
Unless indicated otherwise, the questions and any personal data requested will be processed solely for the purpose of evaluation of proposals in accordance with the call for proposals and in case of successful applications, for the purpose of grant management including evaluations of the CEF by INEA as data controller for this purpose.
Personal data included in the application (name, title, organisation, contact information) may be shared within the limits set forth by Regulation 45/2001 with external experts whose contribution is necessary for evaluation of proposals and grants and with the concerned Member State representatives in the CEF Coordination Committee on a need to know basis in view of their role in the approval of proposals selected for funding, as well as responsibilities under the CEF Regulation.
Details concerning the processing of an applicant's personal data are available in the privacy statement on the call page:
15 Commission Decision C(2016)478 final of 3.2.2016 on the reimbursement of personnel costs of beneficiaries of the Connecting Europe Facility
An applicant's personal data (name, given name if natural person, address, legal form, registration number and name and given name of the persons with powers of representation, decision-making or control, if legal person) may be registered by the Accounting Officer of the Commission in the Early Detection and Exclusion System (EDES) established by the Commission, should the beneficiary be in one of the situations mentioned in Article 106(1) and 107 of Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 966/2012 on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union, as amended by Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 2015/1929 (OJ L 286, 30.10.2015, p. 1).
For more information on EDES (including the grounds for being registered in the database), please see:
and the privacy statement at:
http://ec.europa.eu/budget/library/explained/management/protecting/privacy_statement_edes_en.p df .
Applicants are informed that, to ensure that the EU’s financial interests are protected, their personal data may be communicated to internal audit services, the European Commission, the European Court of Auditors, the body specialising in financial irregularities (Financial Irregularities Panel) or the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF).