Jul 15 2014

Nine proposals were kicked out of Second Round. Four on the waiting list.

The EC has published the Rejection Decision (Part I: legal text, Part II: lists of projects), showing how the 32 projects sent by Member States to the EIB for Technical and Financial Due Diligence were filtered down to the 19 awarded. Five projects failed TFDD. Of the projects that passed, a further four were deemed ineligible (for example, for not being innovative enough). Thus 23 projects made it onto the long-list for funding. The rule of “maximum three projects per Member State over both NER300 awarding Rounds” meant three Member States (France, Sweden, Portugal) with four or more projects that had passed the TFDD and eligibility-check stages had to move projects to a waiting list for funding (Annex 2 of the Rejection Decision) to bring their totals down to three.

The EC is not clear about the circumstances under which these projects may be awarded, saying only it will happen “if funds become available” and if Member States confirm them as per Article 8 of the NER300 Decision. As paragraph 91 of the Call text shows, the EC has not entirely excluded the possibility of awarding more than three projects to a Member State.

The success rate (projects awarded / projects entered to the EIB for evaluation) is high both compared to the First Round…

  Round 1 Round 2
RES projects 23/65 = 35% 18/31 = 58%

…and compared to early indications from the EC’s other funding instrument for energy technology development, Horizon 2020. 420 ‘stage-1’ proposals were submitted the two-stage LCE-01-2014 and LCE-02-2014 calls that closed in April 2014. Of these, 106 have been invited to submit proposals for ‘stage-2’. The grand total of the budget request of the 106 projects is still six times the budget available.

  1. NER300.com’s comment: Coincidence

    The NER300 pot happens to be just big enough to award every single project that passed both TFDD and the eligibility check except those that would have implied funding a fourth project in a Member State. If you don’t believe in coincidences, you might prefer to think that the EC would already like to award funding to those projects, but is checking the legal position before committing itself. This interpretation is given credence by the fact that the EC has not released information on the volumes of each of the components that make up the Second Round pot (see this post).

    With the success rate (and magnitude of some of the awards) eye-wateringly high, Member States (especially those who have ended up with less than three projects) might be kicking themselves for not having entered more projects into the Second Round.