Regional Operational Programme (ROP)

Regional Operational Programme (ROP)



Geografic scope



Local authorities (municipalities) of small and medium-sized towns and communities marginalised from urban environment

Managing body

Ministry of Regional Development and Public Administration Regional Development Agencies (RDA)

Other stakeholders involved

European Regional Development Fund (ERDF)
Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB)
Ministry of European Funds
Ministry of Economy and Finance
Ministry of Internal Affairs

Volume of funding

€8.38 billion

Funding method

€8.38 billion of which €6.86 billion (including the reserve of performance) is from the EU, through the ERDF; national contribution (state budget, local budgets) is about €1.53 billion.

Financing method: Regional allocations (envelopes of resources) based on clear criteria, are an important mechanism for managed competition, ensuring that regions with the greatest need receive adequate resources. The regional allocations approach has been widely used in the EU, and Romania is also adopting this approach towards resource allocation. These regional allocations should be publicly available. The envelopes decentralise resources to the regions but simultaneously link national priorities with local bottom-up needs identification through earmarking of shares of regional allocations.

Own contribution

Differs depending on the programme

Target socioeconomic group

The target groups with the highest risk of poverty and social exclusion belong to the Roma ethnic group, who make up 46% of the population in block ghetto areas to 85% in slum areas with makeshift shelters. In addition to the Roma population, other vulnerable target groups are women (the poverty risk rate in 2011 was 16.8%), children (poverty risk rate was 26.0% in 2010), young people (in Romania, in 2010, one in five young people was at risk of poverty, a continuing phenomenon expansion since 2001), people with disabilities and the elderly.

Target housing situation

The ROP 2014-2020 aims to increase growth and economic competitiveness and improve the living conditions of local communities at regional level by supporting the development of the business environment, infrastructure and services, ensuring the sustainable development of the regions, efficiently managing resources, capitalising on innovation potential and assimilating technological progress.

Eligible energy efficiency measures

• Improving the thermal insulation of the building envelope (exterior walls, windows, carpentry, upper floor, basement floor), trusses and roofing, including building reinforcement measures
• Rehabilitation and modernisation of facilities for the preparation and transport of heating, domestic hot water, and ventilation systems, including
passive cooling systems, as well as the purchase and installation of related equipment and connection to central heating, as appropriate
• The use of renewable energy sources to ensure the necessary thermal energy for heating and preparation of hot water for consumption
• Implementation of energy management systems aimed at improving energy efficiency and monitoring energy consumption (e.g. acquisition and
installation of intelligent systems for the promotion and management of electricity)
• Replacement of fluorescent and incandescent lighting fixtures with lighting fixtures with high energy efficiency and long life
• Any other activities that lead to the achievement of the project objectives
(replacement of elevators and electrical circuits, stairs, basement, dismantling of installed installations and equipment, repair works on facades, etc.)
• Implementation of energy efficiency strategies (e.g., CO2 reduction strategies) that have projects implemented through the ROP 2014-2020
• Acquisition/installation of remote management systems for public lighting
• Creation/extension/reunification of the public lighting system in urban settlements
• Use of renewable energy sources (e.g. photovoltaic panels, etc.)

Targeted energy performance

Expected impacts:
• Reduction of energy consumption by 37% in public buildings, 51% in residential buildings, and 33% for public lighting
• An increased share of innovative SMEs collaborating with others (+ 3.7%)
• Support to more than 5,000 SMEs leading to a 46% increase in labour productivity in less developed regions
• 10% increase in the survival rate of SMEs
• Improving urban public transport attracting 140 million additional passengers per year in less developed regions
• The rehabilitation and modernisation of more than 2,000 km of roads, improving regional connectivity to the Trans-European Transport Network
• Creating 224,000 m2 of additional green spaces in cities
• Renovating 45 additional cultural heritage sites
• 500,000 people benefitting from better community and primary health care services in less developed regions while decreasing avoidable emergency admissions in hospitals
• Increasing the enrolment in crèches, pre-primary education, primary and secondary and vocational education and training

• Increasing the share of the population aged 30-34 with tertiary level education from 20.4% to 28.2%
• Increasing the number of administrative units with all properties included in the land register from 0.24% to 28%

Process of application

Calls for projects under the ROP 2014 -2020 are launched online at by using MySMIS; the application is made available to potential applicants by the Ministry of European Funds


The mission statement identifies several priority development needs, some of which are similar with the previous period (supporting SMEs as a mechanism to generate employment, infrastructure in urban areas, developing infrastructure for tourism, more investments in social infrastructure in order to promote social inclusion of disadvantaged groups and prevent high levels of unemployment and poverty) and some which were introduced within the 2014 – 2020 programming period (generating innovation in companies and cancelling the disconnect between research and business,
addressing unsustainable energy usage in private and public spaces, improving property registration in the Land Registry and unifying the two existing systems of registration). These needs are planned to be addressed by the ROP, which is organised in 11 priority axes (compared with 6 in the previous programming period) to be financed by the ERDF, which allocated €6.3 billion compared to €3.7 billion in the previous programming period.


The challenges include operationalising and integrating regional development, particularly at regional and local levels, within the context of EU structural funds; developing multi-level planning and resource allocation mechanisms that effectively channel net transfers from the EU for efficient absorption at local levels (regions, counties, cities and communes); building on the successful experiences of projects supported by the World Bank and other donors in using bottom-up planning and implementation processes to develop high-quality local projects; and achieving synergies with other operational programmes, especially those dealing with rural development.

Pathways for improvement

Romania could derive significant additional benefits by drawing more heavily on the EU’s hard-earned lessons in programming and implementation. While Romania has gained substantially from a wide array of technical assistance measures to help align its systems with EC requirements, considerably less emphasis has been placed on incorporating the strategic implementation lessons of Member States. А stronger working relationship between the managing authority and the regional development agencies is important to clarify and build a consistent technical approach to project approvals and technical support among the regional development agencies and the ministry.

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