For the first time ever, COSME (the EU Programme for the COmpetitiveness of enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises) offers grants for European defence clusters cooperating in international partnerships.
The European Defence Agency (EDA) has been exploring and highlighting COSME opportunities for defence-related SMEs and clusters since 2016. An EDA exploratory study addressed defence-related clusters and informed about their potential eligibility for COSME grants, including through a dynamic EDA’s COSME web-platform. Last March, EDA hosted a workshop dedicated to EU opportunities for defence-related clusters. Among other topics, the meeting envisaged a future defence-oriented call from the European Commission (EC) allocating COSME grants to EU clusters and, in this respect, EDA started facilitating transnational cluster partnerships during a dedicated cluster-to-cluster (C2C) session.
For the first time ever, and building on the continuous and productive coordination EDA-EC, defence-related clusters now have the opportunity to apply for earmarked grants under the call for proposals - just issued by the Commission’s EASME – “Clusters Go International in the Defence & Security sector”.
The deadline for applications is 13 December 2017 (17:00 Brussels time).
Eligible consortia will have to be composed of at least three different clusters/business network organisations established in three different EU Member States.
At least one of them must be a defence-related entity, meaning :
- either a member of a National Defence Industry Association (see, as non-exhaustive examples, the dedicated EDA’s directory)
- or devoting part of its sales to defence markets
- or taking part in national or European defence-related projects (for example as part of a project managed by the EDA).
EDA stands ready to facilitate the building of cross-border cluster partnerships applying to the just published EASME’s call for proposals.