Tonga and the EU

Support to a Competitive and Innovative Economy in Trinidad and Tobago – Shaping the Future of Innovation

19/11/2021 - 12:05
Private Sector Development

The Innovation Challenge Fund will be a competitive, demand driven fund offering grant financing for innovation, primarily targeting Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).

EU Contribution: EUR 8 601 339

Programme Partners:

  • Government:  The Ministry of Planning and Development
  • Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)

Duration: Jan 2021-Jan 2025

Overview:

The program intends to contribute to creating the business environment required to drive competitiveness and a more diversified economy in a socially and environmentally sustainable way through 3 components:

  1. An innovation fund to finance innovation in goods, services and business models as well as export market access,
  2. Closer applied collaboration between tertiary institutions and firms, and
  3. Building capacity to drive and sustain coordinated support for innovation.

The Innovation Fund:

The Innovation Challenge Fund will be a competitive, demand driven fund offering grant financing for innovation, primarily targeting Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). The fund will be open to all sectors with the following exclusions: Oil and gas production and associated downstream industries, and pure academic research projects that have no commercialization. Special interest in in encouraging innovation financing proposals in agriculture/agribusiness, renewable energy, energy efficiency, Information and Communications Technologies, and transfer of best available technology.

This component shall receive tentatively 93% of the funds of the program.

Collaboration between academia and private firms:

This component seeks to pilot a structured process for graduate students pursuing a Masters or PhD to be placed within organizations that require specialized skills over a finite timeframe to solve a specific business or technical challenge.

Building capacity for coordination and support of innovation activities:

This component seeks to build capacity amongst local innovation stakeholders to better coordinate efforts in implementing a national innovation policy. It includes the development of digital platform for local innovators that connects them with available resources locally and abroad including financing, business support, incubation and export market access. Also, the development of a data collection and measurement framework for reporting on international innovation indicators.

This program is part of the “Team Europe” - Global EU Response to Covid-19 supporting partner countries.

Implementing Partner: CARIRI

LINKS: https://future.cariri4.com

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