About the Programme

The Energy Efficiency and Green Economy Programme (the “Programme”) is a joint initiative between the Ministry of Economy, Energy and Tourism and the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) to promote sustainable energy solutions for SMEs.

The objectives of the Programme are to:

  • Improve the efficiency and productivity of environmentally friendly technologies utilised by SMEs.
  • Reduce the energy intensity and adverse environmental impacts by promoting environmentally friendly, low-waste and energy saving production technologies.

 This new Programme is innovative because it combines EU Structural Funds grants with commercial bank lending in one process

The grant component of the Programme is provided by MoEET as the Managing Authority from the Operational Programme “Development of the Competitiveness of the Bulgarian Economy 2007-2013“ (OP Competitiveness).

The loan component is managed by the EBRD and provided within the framework of the Bulgarian Energy Efficiency for Competitive Industry Finance Facility (BEECIFF). Under this Financing Facility, credit lines are provided to local commercial banks (Participating Banks) to on-lend to SMEs.

A Project Assistant which will be contracted by the MoEET will provide implementation support and will assist the MoEET during the screening of the applications and the grant approval processes. After the implementation of the projects, the Verification Assistant, which will also be contracted, will verify the successful technical completion of each project. A positive verification is a pre-condition for the disbursement of the grant.

Grant Financing

Grant Financing

The grant funding in this Programme is provided by the Managing Authority (MA) and is financed with funds from the OP Competitiveness. The Managing Authority is responsible for the final approval of the grant applications and it also contracts the grant agreements with the approved applicants.

Only project proposals from applicants which passed the technical eligibility and contractor selection compliance check (performed by the Project Assistant) and the financial eligibility check (performed by one of the Participating Banks) will be checked and approved by the MA.

The maximum grant amount for an individual project is 2 million. BGN. The grant intensity depends on the project type and is capped at 50% of the eligible costs:

Project TypeGrant Intensity (% of total eligible costs)
Technology Driven Projects (LEME)30%
Energy Audit Driven Projects40%

Bonus grant for the following features:

  • Technology-driven projects based on an optional energy audit
  • Projects involving CHP
  • Renewable energy projects covering the own needs of the enterprise
  • Fuel switch projects
  • Introduction of an Energy Management System
  • Projects implemented in priority economic sectors
10% (for each feature)

Within this programme, two state aid regimes are applicable, the “de minimis Aid”  scheme and the “Regional Investment Aid” .

According to the de minimis rule, enterprises may only receive aid of up to  391, 066 BGN  over a period of  three consecutive financial years. The de minimis regime is applied to:

  • Investments, included in the List of materials and equipment, which are eligible for financing (except equipment for production purposes); and
  • Services (costs for energy audits, costs for implementation and certification of management systems in accordance with the standards БДС  EN 16001 (Energy Management Systems)/EN ISO 50001, visibility measures and project audits).

All other project costs are funded under the rules of the Regional Investment Aid regime. Detailed guidance on the eligibility of costs and their allocation to the different state aid regimes can be found in the application package on the Programme website and on the website of the MA.