The aim of EEA Grants is to reduce social and economic disparities within the European Economic Area and strengthen bilateral collaboration between the EEA/EFTA states and the fifteen beneficiary states.
Through EEA Grants, the EEA/EFTA states fund various improvements and developments in those EU member states that are economically at a disadvantage. The beneficiary states of the fund are in Southern and Eastern Europe. Through participation in EEA Grants, emphasis is placed on creating opportunities for Icelandic agencies, companies and NGOs to collaborate with the beneficiary states and to increase communications between individuals in Iceland and those states. Iceland is also working systematically towards bilateral relations between the authorities and key partner states. Emphasis is placed on economy in the fund's operations and that projects within the fund's framework are carried out with view of Icelandic values.
The projects funded by the Grants can be divided into five categories:
Innovation, research, education and competitiveness
Social inclusion, youth employment and poverty reduction
Environment, energy, climate change and low carbon economy
Culture, civil society, good governance and fundamental rights and freedoms
Justice and home affairs