The European Union – EU is an economic and political union of over 25 member states that are primarily located in Europe. The EU operates through a system of independent institutions and decisions that are agreed by its member states. Institutions of the EU include the European Commission, the Council of the EU and the European Parliament etc. What began as a purely economic union has evolved to include policy making etc. The Commission makes direct financial contributions in the form of grants in support of projects or organisations which further the interests of the EU or contribute to the implementation of an EU programme or policy. Interested parties can apply by responding to calls for proposals
European Union – projects
The European Union provides funding and grants for a broad range of projects and programmes including education etc. Funding is managed according to strict rules. This is designed to control how the funds are used etc. EU funding is complex because there are many programmes managed by different bodies etc. Over 76% of the EU budget is managed by the member countries. There are two main types of funding: Grants for specific projects and Public contracts. Contracts are awarded through calls for tenders or public procurement. Most of the EU funding is managed at the country level. Governments are thus responsible for conducting checks and applying annual audits. To apply for a European Union funded project in Opole it is essential to meet several criteria such as having a Polish registered company etc. Small business are encouraged to apply for funding – especially if they are running projects that further the interests of the EU or contribute to the implementation of an EU programmes or policies. Projects should have a trans‑national character, be well thought through and offer added value. Detailed criteria for eligibility is specified in the call for proposals. In Opole, the Centrum Informacji i Planowania Kariery Zawodowej is the place where individuals can register themselves.