FAQ

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Application procedure

Can we submit a full proposal all at once?
No. The quick scan is compulsory before you can submit a full proposal. It allows you to pitch your project and partnership ideas in an easy and accessible way. The EPRM will provide you with feedback including a recommendation (positive or negative) on whether or not to go ahead with developing your ideas. It may also include recommendations on how to do this. Upon receiving an advice from the EPRM/RVO.nl, it is possible to submit a full proposal.

Do we receive advice from the EPRM during the application process?
Yes, during the quick scan phase it is possible to contact EPRM to discuss you preliminary ideas for the quick scan. This allows you to better understand if your ideas fit within the purpose of this Call for Proposals. Please note that this is only possible during the quick scan phase and not during the writing and submission of your full proposal.

Can I submit in French or Spanish?
Yes, you can submit your quick scan and the most important documents of the full proposal in English, French and Spanish. A translation of the various documents can be found in the 'Downloads & Links' section.


Threshold criteria

What are the threshold criteria and where do I find them?
These criteria describe the type of organisation, its size, the requirements for partnerships, organisational capacity, grant size, project duration. A short list of threshold criteria can be downloaded from the 'Downloads & Links' page and more information is to be found in the English translation in the Administrative Rules.

Will the requested budget be entirely (100%) supported by EPRM or is there a requirement for the principal applicant to co-finance the project?
If the requested funding exceeds EUR 340,000, a grant is awarded for a maximum of 70% of the eligible costs and an own contribution of at least 30% of the eligible costs is mandatory. If the requested funding is lower than EUR 340,000 it is possible to receive 100% funding. The own contribution to the project should be financed with means (cash or in-kind) that have not been obtained by means of a direct or indirect grant or contribution from the budget of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Do I need to include a supply chain actor in my partnership?  
In case the requested size of the grant exceeds EUR 340,000, the participation of a supply chain actor in the partnership is mandatory.

In case the requested size of the grant is lower than EUR 340,000, it is not mandatory to include a supply chain actor in the partnership. However, it must be elaborated how supply chain actors are envisioned to be engaged in the project. The following is a non-inclusive list of examples of supply chain actor engagement; a Letter of Intent, offtake agreements, co-financing agreement.

Definitions:

  • Supply chain actor: a company having a direct, sustainable link (producing/using, transacting/etc.) with(in) the supply chain. This can be upstream, midstream and/or downstream. This means that, for example companies that mainly provide advisory services are not considered to be part of the supply chain.
  • Company: an entity which undertakes economic activities, regardless of how it is financed. An economic activity is the offering of goods or services on an economic market. Entities that carry out economic activities on a not-for-profit, not-for-loss basis may also qualify as a company in the partnership.

How does the De Minimis Regulation apply to us as an applicant/company?
The EPRM grants to businesses may constitute state aid. Such support is permissible as long as a grant remains within the parameters of the De Minimis Regulation. To avoid exceeding the De Minimis ceiling, we ask therefor the EU company for a declaration, in which the company reports all support and the De Minimis that was provided during the two previous fiscal years and the current fiscal year. Financial support for a company outside the EU is not covered by the state aid prohibition and therefore not under the De Minimis Regulation. Only when the non-EU company is affiliated to an EU-company the De Minimis Regulation might applicable, i.e. all or part of the grant to non-EU Company is to be credited to the EU company (check User Guide to the SME Definition). 


Content quick scan/proposal

To what extent does the project need to link up with the EPRM Theory of Change?
The Theory of Change (ToC) is the backbone of the EPRM, so it is very important that your proposal is related to the ToC. Especially the outputs and outcomes described in the right column of the ToC (upstream side) are very relevant for this Call for Proposals. Make sure your proposal contributes to these outcomes and motivate how: 1) Mines have access to markets and improved technical and financial ability to produce responsibly and 2) Pooled financial and technical resources to support mine improvement via strategic partnerships in targeted countries.

Can the project be implemented in any country of the world or is there a geographical limitation?
This call has a global scope. However, it is required that activities are conducted in a Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Area (CAHRA). The EPRM follows the guidelines of the European Commission with respect to the definition of a CAHRA. Make sure to motivate in your quick scan and full proposal why the project region can be considered a CAHRA. 

Can the project be focused on just any ‘conflict mineral’?
The present call for proposals focuses exclusively on activities aimed at or linked to improving the conditions in and around 3TG (gold, tin, tantalum and tungsten) mines.


Assessment

What are the assessment criteria and where do I find them?
These criteria describe the project relevance, the project design, sustainability of the project, the quality of the partnership and organisations, and the technical quality of the proposal related to the implementation of the project. Please refer to section 7.1 of the Administrative Rules which can be downloaded from the ‘Downloads & Links’ page.

Policy regarding sexual intimidation and other serious misconduct or inappropriate behavior

What forms or documents have to be included in Annex VI?

In the Administrative Rules, the following is stated:

In order to qualify for a grant, the lead party must demonstrate that he and his partners have laid down an integrity policy and that he and his partners have introduced procedures that make it possible to apply that policy. This integrity policy and these procedures are intended to prevent, as much as possible, serious forms of transgressive behaviour, including sexual misconduct, towards employees and other individuals when implementing the proposed activities, by the lead party, his partners and the parties engaged by them. Furthermore, in the event of such incidents, they will perform an investigation, act as promptly as possible with appropriate measures to put an end to it and mitigate the consequences. The procedures are set up such that they ensure that incidents are reported to the Minister in a timely fashion.

Through its integrity policy, code of conduct(s) or other relevant documents, the lead party shows:

  • What is understood by ‘sexual intimidation and other forms of inappropriate behaviour’,
  • What kind of reporting procedure is present within the company in case of sexual intimidation or other cross-border behaviour,
  • The procedure for handling these kinds of reports or signals,
  • What actions are taken should the presence of sexual intimidation or other inappropriate behaviour be confirmed,
  • How this is reported and accounted for to relevant authorities, among which sponsors.

What kind of behaviour falls under ‘sexual and other misconducts and other serious forms of inappropriate behaviour towards employees and other individuals’?

At any case, this concerns punishable and prohibited behaviour according to the standards of Dutch legislation. In addition, serious misconducts can occur which are strictly speaking not punishable or illegal, but which are within the context of the own integrity policy and code of conducts indicated as severe and which can, for example, lead to (immediate) dismissal or other heavy disciplinary measures.

Does only the lead party have to show relevant documents related to the integrity policy?

Yes. The other partners will have to declare to comply with the integrity policy of the lead party. They do so in the Partner Form (Annex IV).