Initially, a Fund for Lending for Purposes of Faster Development of Economically Underdeveloped Areas existed, adopted in 1974, under the regional development policies of the old Yugoslav federation.

The legislation enacted in 1994 repealed the previous legal framework and gave birth to the Agency for Economically Underdeveloped Areas.

In 2000 the Agency was renamed as a Bureau for Economically Underdeveloped Areas.

From 01.01.2008 the legal successor is the Bureau for Regional Development, a body within the Ministry of Local Self-Government, with the status of a legal entity.

The Bureau performs the following basic functions:

Prepares the analytical and documentational basis for the drafting of the strategic and
operative planning documents for regional development;

Develops the Proposal-Methodology for preparation of planning documents;

Prepares annual reports on the implementation of the Action plan of the Strategy;

Drafts the Proposal-Decision on the criteria and indicators for identification of areas
with specific development needs;

Prepares the Proposal- List of areas with specific development needs;

Prepares the proposal-criteria for the level of development of the units of local self-government;
and the regions;

Prepares the proposal-act for the classification of the units of local self-government
and the planning regions according to their level of development;

Provides professional assistance to the Centers for development of the planning
regions with regards to the design of the plans for development of the planning regions
and carrying out other regional development-related activities;

Disseminates information on the type and scope of the funds and on the instruments for
stimulation of regional development to all involved parties;

Establishes and maintains a regional development information system in collaboration;
with the State Statistical Bureau;

Performs other activities in the area of regional development stipulated by law.

Sources for Funding of Regional Development:

· Budget of the Republic of Macedonia (1% GDP);
· Budgets of the local self-government units;
· European Union funds;
· Other international sources;
· Donations and sponsorships from individuals and legal entities.

Who is eligible to apply?

· Local self-government units;
· Legal entities which will implement projects in the region.

What kind of projects could be submitted?

· Infrastructure projects:
· Technical projects (regional and local roads, water supply and similar);
· Social infrastructure (schools and health institutions);
· Projects for development of tourism in the regions.

Distribution of the Funds for Promoting of Equitable Regional Development:

· 70% for funding projects for development of the planning regions, distributed with accordance to their development level;
· 20% for funding projects for development of the areas with specific development needs;
· 10% for funding projects for development of villages.

The funds are distributed to the local self-government units which areas with specific development needs are identified, once they obtain approval by the Councils for Regional Development.

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