The Asia-Invest Programme is an initiative by the European Commission to promote and support business co-operation between the EU and Asia.
The Programme provides assistance to intermediary business organisations to facilitate mutually beneficial partnerships between SMEs in the EU and South and East Asia; as well as to strengthen the business climate to increase trade and investment flows between the two regions. The Asia-Invest Programme commenced in 1997, and has since entered its second phase of implementation from 2003 to 2007.
For the period 2006-2007, the Commission has provided EUR 20.000.000 to implement a new phase of the Asia-Invest Programme. This follows previous commitments of EUR 67.000.000
Asia-Invest was launched in 1998 and aims to promote the internationalisation of European and Asian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). For the period 2006-2007 it will continue to support the exchange of experience, networking and matchmaking among European and Asian business organisations to promote the greater integration of European and Asian companies and the transfer of know-how and technology between the two regions. This is achieved by supporting multilateral partnership projects between intermediary business organisations in the European Union and South Asia, South East Asia and East Asia. With its Asia-wide approach, the programme will serve to bring European and Asian operators together to help them benefit from trade and economic liberalisation.
The programme is an important initiative in the Commission’s overall strategy to support EU-Asia co-operation and strengthen partnerships directly between the private sector in Europe and Asia. View Financing Proposal and Commission Decision C(2006)1108.
Eligible countries are the 25 Member States of the European Union in partnership with the following countries in Asia:
EU: Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom
Asia: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, East Timor, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Nepal, North Korea, Pakistan, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam
Organisations from the following non-developing countries or territories are eligible to participate fully in projects as associates, provided they do not receive Commission funding: Brunei Darussalam, Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong, Japan, Macao, Singapore and South Korea.
The Call for Proposals 2006-2007 is open, with two deadlines on 6 October 2006 and 9 March 2007 and EUR 16.75 million available for grant support to partnerships of EU and Asian business intermediary organisations, under the following components: BUSINESS MEETINGS and CAPACITY-BUILDING. It includes new co-financing specifications and administrative & technical requirements. See How to Apply for application materials. For information on completed or ongoing co-financed projects see Projects.
These major events will be held in Chengdu, Sichuan Province, China. The Asia-Invest Forum2006 is the Programme's premier networking event and will be implemented by the European Union Chamber of Commerce in China (EUCCC), from 6-7 November 2006 along-side the EU-China Partenariat. See Events. The EU-China Partenariat 2006 is expected to bring together 400 EU and 500 local Chinese companies for two-days of intensive match-making meetings. The China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT) will implement the event in co-operation with the EC Delegation to China. Visit the web site for the sectors for co-operation, details of National Counsellors and the catalogue of participating companies: www.euchinapartenariat.com/english/.
For more detailed information on the programme and how to participate, the Asia-Invest II website can be accessed using the link: ec.europa.eu/comm/europeaid/projects/asia-invest/html2002/main.htm