EU Structural Funds
The resources of the structural funds of the European Union are used to support economic development and diminish the differences between various regions of Europe.
In 2007–2013, the development of Estonian information society will be supported with 62.6 million euros. Funding is only given to projects that are intended to promote the goals of the priority field “Promoting information society” of the “Operational Programme for the Development of Economic Environment”. Information System Authority (RIA) serves as the implementing entity.
The development if the information society is being supported in three ways:
- Open application rounds — RIA organises an application round, processes the applications, makes funding decisions and supervises the usage of the grant. Application rounds have certain topics, which correspond to the activity directions determined in the Estonian Information Society Strategy (PDF) and its implementation plans.
- Pursuant to investment plans — the plans consist of a list of projects meant to increase the efficiency of public sector functioning that is determined in the strategy of the information society and its implementation plans. The plans include investments that are strategically important and of high priority for the state, and the plans are approved by the Government of the Republic. The usage of the grant is supervised by RIA.
- The programme “Raising public awareness about the information society” gives funding to activities that are used to implement the state’s priorities, whereas they do not presuppose making investments to the infrastructure. The programme will be approved with the directive of the Minister of Economic Affairs and Communications. The programme will be implemented by RIA. In 2007–2013, the resources of the programme are being used to increase the usability of current electronic solutions, promote the creation of new e-services and notify people on the safe use of computers. The volume of the programme is 3.2 million euros.
In 2004–2006, the sum allocated to Estonia from the structural funds and the Cohesion Fund totalled to 12.5 billion kroons. 130 million kroons of this sum was used to support the development of the information society.