As underlined in the most recent Commission Communication on the Delivery of the European Agenda on Migration1 an EU strategic communication approach needs to be developed, incorporating the already on-going and future EU and Member State awareness raising and information campaigns, to increase potential migrants' capacity to make decisions in their best interests and to reduce the demand for and the risk of being smuggled and falling victim to human trafficking. Such provision of information must equally promote legal pathways, once established, to provide safe and structured alternatives for human mobility.
The EU Action Plan against migrant smuggling2, that accompanied the adoption of the first ever European Agenda on Migration3 in 2015, stated that raising awareness of the risks of smuggling and of irregular migration is crucial for preventing prospective migrants and asylum seekers, including people in more vulnerable situations such as children and women, from embarking on hazardous journeys towards the EU. The Action plan foresaw the launch of information and awareness raising campaigns in key countries of origin or transit for migrants.
The Joint Communication on Migration on the Central Mediterranean route4 and the subsequent Malta Declaration by the Members of the European Council underlined the importance of conducting information campaigns in the countries of origin and along the migratory route, calling for enhancing similar outreach activities addressing migrants in Libya. In fact, it echoed the Council conclusions on migrant smuggling adopted on 10th March 2016, which called on Member States to "increase awareness of the risks of irregular migration and migrant smuggling among the general public, vulnerable groups and professionals that could come into contact with smuggled migrants, by for instance developing a counter-narrative in the media and to share best practice. These campaigns should be targeted at specific groups and contain a balanced message, possibly involving the diaspora community".
In the same Conclusions, the Council requested the Commission to "review the results of the EU pilot information campaigns in Ethiopia/Sudan5 and Niger6 together with EU Member States and Agencies with the aim of rolling out such information and awareness raising activities in other countries of origin and transit".7
Background of the call
Information and awareness raising campaigns have been launched by the EU and Member States in various guises over the past decade and their prevalence is increasing8. The objectives of these campaigns were to sensitise the target audience and to provide prospective migrants, including those in vulnerable situations, as well as diaspora members and local media with objective information about the perils and difficulties of irregular voyages and about the legal, social and economic realities of life in Europe as well as legal migration alternatives. Ultimately, these campaigns seek to enable asylum seekers and migrants to make informed decisions about their movements and plans for the future.
The decision to embark on an irregular journey to Europe is often characterized by the fact of overlooking the risks for the potential reward. Potential migrants might either over- estimate the likelihood of a successful outcome, fail to make a conscious assessment based on evidence or disregard the likely risks altogether. With regards to this, shortcomings in past information and awareness raising activities could be explained by that:
- Few potential migrants receive information or consider it useful;
- Migrants did not trust certain information channels and while there was an abundance of reporting on the migratory situation, the resort to and the trust of reliable news and information were still scarce;
- Negative information presented in campaigns were either not believed, or were insufficient to overcome the appeal of the alternative positive information presented by friends, family or smugglers;
However, as concluded in recent research carried out upon request of the Commission9 as well as analysis done for the Dutch Ministry of Justice and Security10, the implementation of communication campaigns with components targeted at origin, transit and destination countries could influence and reduce irregular migrant flows to Europe. The key challenge is in delivering this information through sources the target audience trusts. The communication campaigns should consider the following:
- The need to separate the sources of information that influence and encourage the aspiration to migrate from the sources of information that lead to departure, and determine the smuggling process and route;
- The need to address aspirations to migrate irregularly, by seeking to counterbalance the not always realistic views of Europe;
- The need to engage more directly in the migrants' decision-making process by providing information, which would help migrants assess properly the likely rewards of risky behaviour, rather than just focusing on the risks themselves;
- The need to use communication channels adequately by targeting traditional and social media content towards demographics more likely to have access to the internet and television, tailoring the use of a certain typology of communication channels to specific segments of the target audience;
- The need to nuance communication targeting migrants in transit, by helping them to assess and weigh up the known costs of remaining or the ‘failure’ of being returned on the one hand, against the unknown risks, costs and/or rewards of migrating irregularly onwards to Europe on the other hand;
- The need to work with communities in countries of origin to soften the stigma of return, to change perspectives on returnees and to support re-integration processes and reconciliation with families;
The projects implemented under this Call for Proposals should build on the experience of information and awareness raising campaigns on migration previously implemented by the EU, EU Member States and International Organisations in third countries and, where relevant, ensure complementarity with those that are in the process of being implemented or planned.
In order to contribute to the development of the common Union policy on asylum and immigration and to the strengthening of the area of freedom, security and justice in the light of the application of the principles of solidarity and responsibility - sharing between the Member States and cooperation with third countries, the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund (AMIF) was set up. It aims at supporting actions to contribute to the efficient management of migration flows and the implementation, strengthening and development of a common Union approach to asylum and immigration.
Legal basis for AMIF are the following regulations:
- Regulation (EU) No 516/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 April 2014 establishing the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund (OJ L 150, 20.05.2014, p. 168)
- Regulation (EU) No 514/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 April 2014 laying down general provisions on the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund and on the instrument for financial support for police cooperation, preventing and combating crime, and crisis management (OJ L 150 of 20 May 2014)
The AMIF Regulation sets out four specific objectives, respectively to common specific objectives:
- to strengthen and develop all aspects of the Common European Asylum System, including its external dimension;
- to support legal migration to the Member States in accordance with their economic and social needs, such as labour market needs, while safeguarding the integrity of the immigration systems of Member States, and to promote the effective integration of third-country nationals;
- to enhance fair and effective return strategies in the Member States which contribute to combating illegal immigration, with an emphasis on sustainability of
In conformity with Regulation (EU) No 514/2014 Article 6(2), in order to implement the AMIF, the Commission has adopted, has adopted, on 26 April 2017, the 2017 Annual Work Programme for the financing of Union Actions, which includes this Call for Proposals.
2. PRIORITIES OF THIS CALL FOR PROPOSALS
The present Call for Proposals aims at funding projects of information and awareness- raising campaigns in the area of migration in Algeria, The Gambia, Guinea Conakry, Ivory Coast, Niger, Mali, Morocco, Senegal or Tunisia11, aiming at preventing irregular migration and, in particular, migrant smuggling and trafficking of human beings, as defined in the AMIF Annual Work Programme for 201712.
The general objective of the present Call for Proposal is to contribute to the change of perceptions and behaviour of third country nationals pondering irregularly migrating to the EU and key influencers of their decisions.
The goal of this Call for Proposals is to support projects that pursue the following specific objectives:
- to provide trusted, factual, balanced information on the risks of irregular migration – during the journey (dangers of migrating irregularly) and after arrival (hardship of living in the EU irregularly and return), as well as on relevant legal alternatives of migration and on economic opportunities of staying in the country of origin;
- to empower credible voices in countering migrant smugglers' narratives on irregular migration and the diasporas' narratives on living irregularly in the EU;
- to strengthen multi-stakeholder cooperation between actors such as civil society organisations, researchers, media outlets, local state actors, diaspora and where relevant other stakeholders;
Project proposals submitted under the present Call for Proposals should build on the lessons learnt from the past and on-going information and awareness-raising campaigns and activities, including those implemented by the EU, Member States and International Organisations in third countries13. The projects should seek synergies with communication activities being implemented under actions funded by the EU, like the relevant projects co-funded by AMIF14, and projects funded by the EU Trust Fund for
Africa15, as well as, where relevant, with those implemented by EU Member States, International Organizations and other partners.
Project proposals should consist of the following key elements:
1. Preparatory research, in view of developing a tailored communication strategy, in particular to identify target audience(s) of the communication activities, its(their) characteristics, motivations, information needs and gaps as well as media access and consumption, as to design the most effective approach to influence its(their) behaviour. The preparatory research should take into account results and lessons learnt of previous campaigns and communication activities carried out in the same country and should use available primary and secondary data and own analysis.
2. A tailored communication strategy based on the outcome of the preparatory research, in particular to define:
- the geographical scope of the campaign (which country and which part of that country in particular) and the specific migratory context (country of origin vs transit);
- the target audience and its segmentation (gender, age, education, profession, etc.);
- a comprehensive concept, including the overarching idea for the campaign structure, the key messages to be used throughout the period of implementation of the activities and the key visual elements;
- a creative approach allowing for participation and feedback from the target audience, e.g. by fostering use of smartphone apps and text messaging for both multiplication and monitoring/feedback purposes;
- the communication channels to be used ensuring a mix of traditional and social media, including media-buying plan where appropriate, as well as local level outreach, and taking into account the habits of each segment of the target audience in terms of media access and consumption and access and use of trusted information;
- alternative communication tools where appropriate, such as theatre plays, community-led debates, contests (e.g. photo, song, video) and awards (e.g. for journalists), school visits, testimonials, involvement of celebrities etc., adapting them to the habits and characteristics of each context and segment of the target audience;
- key performance indicators (KPIs), both qualitative and quantitative, with baseline and targets to be used to monitor the implementation and to assess the result of the campaign.
3. The production and implementation of the communication campaign, in particular:
- pre-testing of concepts and content of the campaign on sample groups of identified target audience;
- production of content of the campaign;
4. Monitoring and evaluation of the results and impact of the campaign, in particular:
- collecting and analysing of the key performance indicators (KPIs) defined in the communication strategy;
- providing for adjustments of the on-going campaign if necessary;
- allowing for lessons learnt and good practices for future campaigns;
5. A strategy for the sustainability of the campaign activities, in particular:
Communication activities shall directly address both prospective migrants and key influencers, such as families, religious or community leaders, teachers, diaspora in main countries of transit and destination, returning migrants, social contacts, providers of services facilitating migration, etc.
Applicants shall foresee consultation of relevant authorities of the country subject of the proposal throughout the campaign.
Applicants shall develop country-specific and audience-tailored messages for the proposed campaign. However, these messages should in general address the following:
- Irregular migration often entails unbearable physical and mental suffering along the journey, as a consequence of engaging with and being misled by migrant smugglers. The risks for children, especially unaccompanied, and for woman are particularly high. Migrants can also become victims of trafficking in human beings;
- The cost of migration is often much higher than expected and often leads to loss of money and accumulation of debts which are not compensated for upon arrival (if arrived at all).
- Those who enter the EU irregularly and are not in need of protection are to be returned; voluntary returns are prioritised and also possible from transit countries;
- While success stories are possible, living in the EU irregularly can be much harder than expected; diaspora may depict a bright scenario, ashamed to unveil the hardships faced in reality;
- Communicate the legal pathways that exist for both those who migrate for work/education and for those who seek protection;
Given the significance of behavioural change in the context of information and awareness raising campaigns, insights from psychology, sociology and behavioural economics could help to target and design communication activities and to measure their effects. Behavioural sciences seek to understand how people make decisions in practice; how their behaviour is influenced by the context in which their decisions are made and how they are likely to respond to specific policy initiatives16. Applicants are encouraged to embed a behavioural approach to their proposals by:
- identifying the potential behavioural element (i.e. the cause) of the action;
- proposing behavioural levers that can be used to induce behavioural change (e.g. by adapting content of messages, using reference to social norms, addressing misconceptions, raising knowledge, acting upon individual responsibility, perceived norms and loss aversion, framing of the message or adapting the source of the message);
The projects should lead to the following key deliverables:
- report from the preparatory research carried out in view of developing the tailored communication strategy;
- tailored communication strategy document, including definition of the geographical scope (if different than the whole target country), audience segmentation, selection of topics and messages, plan for the use of tailored media and alternative channels, detailed plan for the roll-out of the campaign, etc.;
- monitoring and evaluation methodology document17, including credible baseline and targets for key performance indicators (KPIs) for all elements of the campaign covering inputs, outputs, outcomes and impact of the communication activities;
- content of the information and awareness raising campaign, including products and services designed, produced and disseminated during the campaign;
- quarterly monitoring reports, including on implementation, contingencies and adjustment measures and progress towards achieving the proposed key performance indicators;
Grants will be awarded to support information and awareness raising campaigns in the field of migration in third countries. Proposals that propose activities in one of the following countries will be eligible for this call: Algeria, The Gambia, Guinea Conakry, Ivory Coast, Niger, Mali, Morocco, Senegal, Tunisia.
Each project proposal shall target a single country, which should be clearly indicated in the application form. Applicants may submit more than one proposal – each of them covering a single country – and, therefore, apply for more than one grant. The budget limitations for each project provided under section 6.1 must be respected.
Proposals which focus on information and awareness raising campaigns targeting only diaspora within EU Member States and lacking engagement from third country partners will not be considered for funding under the Call for Proposals.
Any action under this Call for Proposals shall respect and shall be implemented in line with the rights and principles enshrined in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union. Applications should pay appropriate attention to the effects of the project on individual rights and freedoms, as well as to possible remedies. In addition, any action under this Call for Proposals should comply with all relevant ethical principles and all applicable international, EU and national law on ethical issues while carrying out the project.
a) Publication of the call
b) Deadline for submitting applications
(05/04/2018 – 17:00 CET)
c) Evaluation period
d) Information to applicants
e) Signature of Grant Agreement
f) Starting date of the action
17 Please refer to the European Commission Toolkit on evaluation of communication activities https://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/info/files/communication-evaluation-toolkit_en.pdf
4. BUDGET AVAILABLE
The total budget earmarked for the co-financing of projects is estimated at EUR 4.500.000 (four and half million euro).
The grant amount requested for each project proposal must be between a minimum amount of EUR 500.000 (five hundred thousand euro) and a maximum amount of EUR 1.000.000 (one million euro).
The Commission reserves the right not to distribute all the funds available.
5. ADMISSIBILITY REQUIREMENTS
Applications must be sent no later than the deadline for submitting applications referred to in section 3.
Applications must be submitted using the Electronic Submission System of the Participant Portal originally developed for the Horizon 2020 Research programmes.
Applications must be submitted using the standard Submission Form Part A and Part B from the call. They must include all the mandatory information and be accompanied (if applicable) by the Audit Report18 Annexes.
Applications must be drafted in one of the EU official languages. English is preferred in order to speed up the evaluation procedure.
Projects cannot be scheduled to last more than 18 months.19 Applications for projects scheduled to run for a longer period will be rejected.
Failure to comply with these requirements will lead to the rejection of the application.
6. ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA
6.1. Eligible applicants and applications
In order to be eligible for a grant, the Applicant and the Co-applicants must be:
a) legal persons;
b) established in a Member State participating in AMIF (this does not apply to international organisations);
c) public bodies, non-public not-for-profit organisation, for-profit private entities if they work on a non-profit basis (real cost recovery) or international organisations.
Union agencies can be neither Applicants nor Co-applicants.
In order to be eligible for a grant, applications must be:
a) submitted by a Consortium between at least two entities;
b) covering a single third country from the list provided in section 2;
c) seeking EU co-funding equal to or more than EUR 500 000 and equal to or less than EUR 1 000 000;
d) scheduled to run for a maximum period of 18 months;
e) Activities must not have started prior to the date of submission of the grant application.
Affiliated entities, i.e. legal entities having a legal or capital link with Applicants, shall take part in the action as individual Co-applicants in order to declare eligible costs.
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 34.3.1(b) (change of the legal situation of the beneficiary)] of the grant agreement.
To prove these eligibility requirements, Applicants and Co-applicants will have to provide the relevant information and upload necessary documents showing their legal status in the Beneficiary Register. The information needs to be provided before the submission deadline.
6.2. Eligible activities
In order to ensure adequate design and implementation of the information and awareness raising campaigns, the following types of activities are eligible under this Call for Proposals:
a) Preparatory research necessary to properly identify target audience(s), its(their) characteristics, motivations, information needs and gaps as well as media access and consumption;
b) Development of a tailored communication strategy, including:
Assessment of the complementarity and synergies with similar initiatives and lessons learnt;
Definition of geographical scope, specific migratory context, target audience(s) and their segmentation;
Identification of an overarching idea for the campaign and of key messages;
Definition of appropriate channels, media and communication tools to be used in the campaign;
Defining of a monitoring and evaluation methodology and establishment of key performance indicators (KPIs);
A detailed plan for the roll-out and management of the campaign.
c) Creation, production, implementation and dissemination of the campaign (including pre-testing of concepts and content of the campaign; production of content of the campaign; rolling-out of the communication activities; social and traditional media marketing and buying as well as non-media based outreach) in the language of the country/audience addressed by the project, but also, when relevant, in English and/or French;
d) Activities used as catalyst for communication actions and helping to amplify the communication campaign messages;
e) Monitoring throughout the campaign and evaluation of the results of the communication activities;
f) Coordination with other actors to ensure complementarity and consistency of ongoing and future activities;
g) Capacity building to the partners and stakeholders from the third country addressed by the project, to improve sustainability of the campaign;
h) Management of the project, including the participation to a joint kick-off meeting in Brussels with the projects funded under this Call.
7. EXCLUSION CRITERIA
Applicants will be excluded from participating in the Call for Proposals procedure and from the grant award if they are in any of the situations referred to in articles 131(4) of the EU Financial Regulation20, i.e. one of the following situations:
1.1. Exclusion from participation in the Call for Proposals
(a) they are bankrupt or being wound up, are having their affairs administered by the courts, have entered into an arrangement with creditors, have suspended business activities, are the subject of proceedings concerning those matters, or are in any analogous situation arising from a similar procedure provided for in national legislation or regulations;
(b) they or persons having powers of representation, decision making or control over them have been convicted of an offence concerning their professional conduct by a judgment of a competent authority of a Member State which has the force of res judicata;
(c) they have been guilty of grave professional misconduct proven by any means which the contracting authority can justify including by decisions of the EIB and international organisations;
(d) they are not in compliance with their obligations relating to the payment of social security contributions or the payment of taxes in accordance with the legal provisions of the country in which they are established or with those of Belgium or those of the country where the action is to be implemented;
(e) they or persons having powers of representation, decision making or control over them have been the subject of a judgment which has the force of res judicata for fraud, corruption, involvement in a criminal organisation, money laundering or any other illegal activity, where such an illegal activity is detrimental to the Union's financial interests;
(f) they are currently subject to an administrative penalty for: being guilty of misrepresentation in supplying the information required by the Commission as a condition of participation in a procurement or grant award procedure or for failing to supply this information; or having been declared to be in serious breach of its obligations under grant agreements or contracts financed by the Union's budget.
7.1. Exclusion from award
Applicants will not be granted financial assistance if, in the course of the grant award procedure, they:
(g) are subject to a conflict of interest in connection with the action;
(h) are guilty of misrepresentation in supplying the information required by the Commission as a condition of participation in the grant award procedure or fail to supply this information;
(i) find themselves in one of the situations of exclusion, referred to in section 7.1.
Administrative and financial penalties may be imposed on Applicants and Co-applicants who are guilty of misrepresentation.
8. SELECTION CRITERIA
8.1. Financial capacity
Applicants and Co-applicants must have stable and sufficient sources of funding to maintain their activity throughout the period during which the action is being carried out and to participate in its funding. Organisations participating in several projects shall have sufficient financial capacity to implement multiple projects.
Financial capacity check will be performed by the Research Executive Agency (REA). It will be assessed in line with the requirements of the Financial Regulation (EC) No 966/2012.
The documents that will be requested when assessing the financial capacity include (1) the profit and loss account and (2) the balance sheet for the last financial year for which the accounts were closed. For newly created entities the business plan may replace the above documents.
The financial documents must be uploaded in the Beneficiary Register when uploading the application package.
In case of low financial capacity, the Commission may decide the following:
- request further documents;
- request budget modifications / reallocations of costs;
- introduce interim payments based on interim reports;
- modify pre-financing percentage.
In case of insufficient financial capacity, the Commission may decide the following:
- request a change of Co-applicant;
- reject the application.
Financial Capacity assessment will not be carried out if:
- the Applicant or Co-applicant is a public body or an international organisation;
If the share of a grant requested by an organisation (Applicant or Co-applicant) exceeds EUR 750 000, this organisation must also provide an audit report produced by an approved external auditor certifying its accounts for the last closed financial year. This provision shall not apply to public bodies or to international organisations.
8.2. Operational capacity
Applicants and Co-applicants must have the professional competencies as well as appropriate qualifications necessary to complete the proposed action. This capacity shall be assessed based on the experience of the Applicants and each Co-applicant or, as an alternative, on the relevant experience of their directly involved employees.
As evidence, the following information must be provided in the Submission Form Part B of the proposal:
- general profiles (qualifications and experiences) of the staff primary responsible for managing and implementing the proposed action to be described under point 5.1.3,
The operational capacity assessment is not applicable to public bodies and international organisations.
9. AWARD CRITERIA
Eligible applications and their proposed action will be assessed on the basis of the following award criteria:
Maximum Points 30
2. Quality of the project
Maximum Points 20
3. Cost effectiveness
Maximum Points 20
4. European added value
Maximum Points 20
5. Expected results, dissemination, sustainability and long-term impact
Maximum Points 10
Maximum Points 100
Applications receiving less than 21 points for the "relevance" criterion will not be evaluated further .
Quality: applications will be assessed with regards to the appropriateness and creativity of the overall design of the campaign and planned implementation, taking into account the communication methodology, organisation of work and strategy for project management, project monitoring and evaluation and dissemination. Proposals submitted need to provide clear and specific goals, objectives and key messages and initial understanding of the migratory context and target audience as well as suitable choice of communication activities and channels. Proposals need to demonstrate knowledge and experience in working in the country subject of the application and expertise in relevant communication activities. (20 points);
Cost-effectiveness: applications will be assessed with regards to whether the costs of the proposed action are adequate to the activities and proportionate to the expected results (20 points);
European added value: the proposed activities, outcomes and impact should have a broad EU relevance; applications will be assessed on whether the outcomes and results ensure a complementarity to EU and EU MS funded information and awareness raising campaigns and communication activities in the area of migration (20 points);
Applications that pass the threshold of minimum 65 points will be considered for funding within the limits of the available budget.
10. LEGAL COMMITMENTS
The award of each grant is subject to the conclusion of a Grant Agreement in writing.
The coordinators of projects proposed for funding will be invited to engage in a grant agreement preparation process, which will be carried out via an online IT system. If successful, it will conclude with the signature of a Grant Agreement, drawn up in euro and detailing the conditions and level of funding.
The Grant Agreement must be signed electronically first by the coordinator on behalf of the consortium and then by the European Commission. All co-beneficiaries must accede to the Grant Agreement by signing electronically the accession forms to the grant agreement.
Please note, that if international organisations are involved in the application, no other specific clauses applicable to international organisations than the ones already available in the Model Grant Agreement will be added (see the Model Grant Agreement - link).
Please note that the award of a grant does not establish any entitlement for subsequent years.
11. FINANCIAL PROVISIONS
An action may only receive one grant from the EU budget.
In no circumstances shall the same costs be financed twice by the Union budget. To
ensure this, applicants shall indicate the sources and amounts of Union funding received or applied for the same action or part of the action or for its functioning during the same financial year as well as any other funding received or applied for the same action (Submission Form Part B, section 6).
No grant may be awarded retrospectively for actions already completed. A grant may be awarded for an action which has already begun only where the Applicant can demonstrate the need to start the action before the Grant Agreement is signed. In any case, costs eligible for financing may not have been incurred prior to the date of submission of the grant application.
Co-financing means that the resources which are necessary to carry out the action may not be entirely provided by the EU grant.
Co-financing of the action may take the form of:
The Budget Estimate of the action is to be included in the Application Form. It must have revenue and expenditure in balance and must be drawn up in euro.
Beneficiaries with general accounts in a currency other than the euro shall convert costs incurred in another currency into euro at the average of the daily exchange rates published in the C series of Official Journal of the European Union, determined over the corresponding reporting period.21 Where no daily euro exchange rate is published in the For further guidance on exchange rate please consult the Guide for Applicants.
Official Journal of the European Union for the currency in question, conversion shall be made at the average of the monthly accounting rates established by the Commission and published on its website, determined over the corresponding reporting period.
Beneficiaries with general accounts in euro shall convert costs incurred in another currency into euro according to their usual accounting practices.
Where the implementation of the action requires the award of procurement contracts (implementation contracts), the Beneficiary must award the contract to the bid offering best value for money or the lowest price (as appropriate), avoiding conflicts of interests and retaining the documentation for the event of an audit. Detailed information on subcontracting is provided in the Guide for Applicants.
e) Financial support to third parties
The applications may not envisage provision of financial support to third parties. f) Non-profit rule
EU grants may not have the purpose or effect of producing a profit within the framework of the action. 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. In this respect, where a profit is made, the Commission shall be entitled to recover the percentage of the profit corresponding to the Union contribution to the eligible costs actually incurred by the Beneficiary to carry out the action.
11.2. Maximum amount requested
The EU grant is limited to a co-funding rate of 90% of the total eligible costs of the action.
Consequently, part of the total eligible expenses must be financed from sources other than the EU grant (see section 11.1.c).
11.3. Payment arrangements
A pre-financing payment corresponding to maximum 80% of the EU grant amount will be transferred to the Coordinator after the signature of the Grant Agreement by both parties and in accordance with its terms.
The Commission will establish the amount of the final payment to be made to the Coordinator on the basis of the calculation of the final grant amount. If the total of earlier payments is higher than the final grant amount, the Beneficiaries will be required to reimburse the amount paid in excess by the Commission through a recovery order.
12. PROCEDURE FOR THE SUBMISSION OF APPLICATIONS
12.1. How to apply
Proposals must be submitted by the deadline indicated in section 3 via the Electronic Submission System. The list of available calls can be found at the calls for proposals page.
Before submitting a proposal both the Applicant and Co-applicants must be registered via the Beneficiary Register and obtain the 9-digit Participant Identification Code (PIC) (one for each applicant/co-applicant).
In submitting a proposal, the Applicant accepts the procedures and conditions as described in this Call for Proposals and in the documents to which it refers.
No modification of the application is allowed once the deadline for submission has elapsed. However, if there is a need to clarify certain aspects or for the correction of clerical mistakes, the Commission may contact the Applicant for this purpose during the evaluation process22.
Applicants will be informed in writing about the results of the evaluation process.
12.2. Related documents
The following documents are available via the Electronic Submission System:
— Application form (Submission Form Part A and Part B)
— Audit Report23 if applicable
12.3. Applications for several projects
The Applicant may submit more than one application under this call for proposals. The Applicant may be awarded more than one grant under this call for proposals. An organisation may participate as Applicant or Co-applicant in several applications.
12.4. Several applications for the same project
Only one application will be accepted and evaluated for any given project. In case there are several applications for the same project, the Applicant will be asked to clarify which application shall be evaluated.
An action may receive only one grant from the EU budget.
For questions on the online submission tools, please contact the IT helpdesk set-up for this purpose via the Participant Portal website.
Non-IT related questions shall be sent to the following email address: HOME-AMIF-UNION- ACTIONS@ec.europa.eu. In order to ensure an efficient handling of any enquiry please indicate clearly the reference of this Call for Proposals.
Questions will be answered as soon as possible. Questions received later than 7 calendar days before the deadline for submitting applications will not be answered. In the interest of equal treatment of applicants, the Commission cannot give a prior opinion on the eligibility of applicants or actions or on the outcome of the Call for Proposals before the official announcement of results.
Applicants are advised to consult the Call's website regularly. The Commission will publish at this website any additional information relevant to the Call, such as responses to frequently asked questions (if appropriate) and the results of the selection procedure.
Article 96 of the Financial Regulation
If the share of a grant requested by an organisation (applicant or co-applicant) exceeds EUR 750 000, this organisation must also provide an audit report produced by an approved external auditor certifying its accounts for the last closed financial year.
13.1. By the Beneficiaries
Beneficiaries must clearly acknowledge the European Union’s contribution in all publications or in conjunction with activities for which the grant is used. Please refer to the Model Grant Agreement for more details.
13.2. By the Commission
All information relating to grants awarded in the course of a financial year shall be published on an internet site of the European Union institutions no later than the 30 June of the year following the financial year in which the grants were awarded. The Commission will publish the following information:
- name and address of the beneficiary,
- subject of the grant,
Upon a reasoned and duly substantiated request by the Beneficiary, the publication shall be waived if such disclosure risks threatening the rights and freedoms of individuals concerned as protected by the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union or harm the commercial interests of the beneficiaries.
14. DATA PROTECTION
The reply to any call for proposals involves the recording and processing of personal data (such as name, address and CVs of individuals participating in the co-financed action). Such data will be processed pursuant to Regulation (EC) No 45/2001 of the European Parliament and of the Council 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 in order to evaluate the application in accordance with the specifications of the Call for Proposal will be processed solely for that purpose by the Commission or third parties acting on behalf and under the responsibility of the Commission. Data subjects may be informed regarding further details of the processing operations, their rights and how they may be enforced by referring to the privacy statement published in the Legal Notice page of the Participant Portal.
Applicants are invited to check the relevant privacy statement at regular intervals so as to be duly informed on possible updates that may occur by the deadline for submission of their proposals or afterwards. Beneficiaries assume the legal obligation to inform their staff on the relevant processing operations that are to be performed by the Research Executive Agency; in order to do so, they have to provide them with the privacy statements published by the Agency in the Participant Portal before transmitting their data to the Agency. Personal data may be registered in the Early Detection and Exclusion System (EDES) of the European Commission provided for in Articles 105a and 108 of the EU Financial Regulation according to the applicable provisions.
15. MEANS OF REDRESS
If, at any stage of the administrative treatment of grant applications, the persons or entities concerned consider that they have been affected by an instance of maladministration, they may, irrespective of any other means of redress, make a complaint to the European Ombudsman in accordance with Article 228(1) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union and as provided by the Parliament Decision of 9 March 1994 on the regulations and general conditions governing the performance of the Ombudsman's duties published in Official Journal L 113 of 4 May 1994.