2nd-Solicitation Round : FAQ
Regarding procedures for application
Is an overseas company eligible for application independently?
Yes, any overseas companies are eligible for application independently as long as they satisfy the application requirements set forth in article 5, Application requirements in the Guidelines of the Subsidy Program, such as “(The entities) ensure organizations for properly conducting the relevant subsidized project.”, “(The entities) have the capacity, knowledge and experience required for conducting the relevant subsidized project”, etc.
How will the information contained in the application documents be handled?
METI and PMO will NOT use the contents of application documents submitted for other purposes than the evaluation/review. And we’ve made a non-disclosure agreement with all the members of the review committee. Nevertheless, you have to be noted that the information which has not been classified as confidential will be subject to disclosure as a response to the legal request for disclosure.
For the details of the private policy of this RFP, please refer to the “Private Policy” on the website below.
Can the costs for the application be covered by the Japanese Government?
No, any costs for the application arel not compensated.
Is it possible to ask for additional data on plants, etc. in establishing a proposal or in implementation of the project?
If you need supplemental information, please contact us. We cannot assure we can release all of the information you need; and we will release the information if it is available and open it on the website or so.
Is an organization without juridical personality eligible for application?
An organization is also eligible as long as it satisfies the application requirements of stipulated in Item 5 in the Guidelines.
Is it allowable for different companies to establish a JV and apply?
We can accept proposals submitted by JVs. If you would like to apply for this project as a JV, please describe the leading company and the implementation scheme on the designated form.
Is it allowable to make a proposal through the methods other than filling in the specified application forms (i.e. by oral presentation or using the media such as brochures and image files)?
We will not accept any proposals not using the stipulated submission forms. Any other media you may use will NOT be taken into account for the paper screening.
We would like to make a proposal jointly with other companies. Is it possible for you to suggest or recommend partner companies or organizations for us?
No. You must find suitable partners and establish the implementation scheme by yourself.
If we apply for the project with other companies as a team, how will the process after the adoption be?
The leading organization takes charge of establishment of the implementation plan, preparation and submission of the accomplishment report. All of the organizations composing the JV must be investigated for the settlement of the subsidy amount.
There may be some time lag between the deadline of the application documents and the commencement date of the subsidized project. Is it acceptable to describe the implementation scheme based upon the personnel change taking place after the deadline?
Yes, It is acceptable.
We have to submit 2 copies of the application documents; every copy needs sign or seal?
Could we sign or seal on one application document and make a copy of it?/p>
One copy with the sing or seal is indispensable; however the others can be its reproduction.
When submitting a partial proposal, do we need to specify that it is a partial one?
When you submit a partial proposal, please write it clearly under the company/organization name, etc. on Form 1.
Regarding Form 5, what should we write down if we don’t have a plan to import or export something which requires permission under Foreign Exchange and Foreign Trade Act ?
Please circle the item “”Not Required”” and state the reason too.
Regarding procedures for evaluation and adoption
Who is in charge of evaluation of the proposals?
The application documents shall firstly be evaluated by the review committee consisting of experts. Paper examination and if necessary, applicants’ oral presentation shall be also conducted.
For the presentation evaluation, can we supplement some information to the contents of the application document?
You can add supplementary explanation at the presentation evaluation.
Do all the applicants need to come to the venue for the presentation evaluation?
If you cannot come to the venue for the presentation, please contact us in advance so that you can make a presentation via a Web conference, a TV conference and such. In such a case, however, the applicant may take risks of bad connection, etc.
How long is the time of oral presentation of the presentation evaluation?
The time of oral presentation may be changed according to the number of applicants.
This solicitation seems to be more advantageous to Japanese companies because it is easier for them to observe the guidelines or the manual when compared with overseas companies.
This project is financed by Japanese governmental budget and is implemented in accordance with Japanese scheme and in compliance with Japanese laws. However, any Japanese companies will not be treated preferentially.
Regarding the evaluation criterion, what do the “basic points” and the “additional points” mean respectively?
The “basic point” refers to the conditions which must absolutely be met; and the “additional points” refer to the items which give additional points if the contents of the proposal are excellent. Please note that if you fail to meet a “basic points” condition, you will be disqualified.
Has it already been decided how many proposals will be adopted for each project?
One or more proposals are planned to be adopted.
Is there a possibility that a member of the review committee would use the proposal documents for any proposes other than their evaluation?
Because conclusion of the non-disclosure agreement is one of the conditions of appointment of the members of the review committee, they won’t make use of the application documents other than for the purpose of their evaluation.
When will the results of the paper screening be informed? When will the review committee be held?
We will inform the entity having passed the paper screening of the result as soon as possible. The review committee is planned to be held around in the last week of March.
Regarding the RFP (Miscellaneous)
When is the subsidy going to be paid?
Basically, the payment will be made after the subsidy amount is settled following the completion of the subsidy project. However, depending on the entity’s circumstance, the payment by estimate before the completion of the project may be admitted.
If an overseas entity is adopted, how will the meetings be held? And how often?
PMO and implementing entities will have meetings, interim report and final report as well as progress report of the project as necessary. The frequency of meetings depends on the necessity of these meetings and reports.
Is there any reference for METI’s health insurance costs by grade?
Please see the latest list of the health insurance costs which is posted on our web site.
Can the subsidy amount to be actually paid be determined only after the “settlement of the amount” procedure, which is conducted after completion of the project?
The paid amount will be settled after expiration of the project period, confirmation of the project result, and inspection for settlement of the amount by PMO. This procedure is formulated by Japanese accounting rules.
How should the necessary expenses for the project be categorized in the proposal?
Please divide the necessary expenses into (1) labor costs and (2) operating costs (raw materials, consumables, design/fabrication/processing, facility/equipment, goods purchase, research, outsourcing, travel, remunerations, rent/depreciation and other necessities) as described in Exhibit 2 of the Grand Policy for Subsidy.
General Question regarding Projects
In “4. Project Term,” it says that the project term must be divided into two terms, i.e. from the grant decision to March 31 2018, and from April 1 to March 31 2018; and the implementation plan and the plan of the income and expenditure must also be described separately on the brief description of subsidized project. Must an applicant prepare the Form 2, “Outline of Subsidy Project” for each project content?
For we can distinguish the descriptions by fiscal year, please prepare two patterns of the Form 2 for each fiscal year or please divide the description into two parts by fiscal year in the Form 2.
In “4. Project Term,” it says that the project term must be divided into two terms, i.e. from the grant decision to March 31 2018, and from April 1 to March 31 2018; and the implementation plan and the plan of the income and expenditure must also be described separately on the brief description of subsidized project. Is it necessary to show the plan of the income and expenditure which sums up the total amount of each content or term?
No, it is not necessary to describe the plan of the income and expenditure including the total amount of the project in Form 2, “”Outline of Subsidy Project.”” Please write the total amount of expenses/application amounts on the Exhibit of Form 1.
In “4. Project Term,” it says that the project term must be divided into two terms, i.e. from the grant decision to March 31 2018, and from April 1 to March 31 2018; and the implementation plan and the plan of the income and expenditure must also be described separately on the brief description of subsidized project. In such a case, could we make an order of which period ranges in two fiscal years?
As some adjustment may need to be made depending on the national budget, etc., please write it in your application document for the fiscal year when the payment will made and note that it ranges in two fiscal years. For the actual description after your proposal is adopted, we will discuss with you individually.
In “4. Project Term,” it says that the project term must be divided into two terms, i.e. from the grant decision to March 31 2018, and from April 1 2018 to March 31 2019; and the implementation plan and the plan of the income and expenditure must also be described separately on the brief description of subsidized project. Can we only pay the purchase expense of materials and consumables in the first term and use them in the second term?
As this project lasts for 2 years, you can order materials and consumables in the first term for the research and development in the second term. In such a case, please note that the purchase expense is of the first term but they will be used for the test in the second term on the application document.
If an applicant with partila proposal is adopted, should its implementation plan be developed based on the plan of the entity with adopted comprehensive proposal?
The entities with adopted comprehensive proposal and of partial proposal need to coordinate and make the implementation plans consistent with each other. During the decision of adoption and the grant decision, coordination will be done, if necessary.
In “2. Contents of Project”, it says that it will be required to conduct analysis and compilation of the adopted partial proposals.”” Can the entities of a comprehensive proposal decide the operation process and the costs on the assumption to work with an entity of a partial proposal.
You can submit a comprehensive proposal on the basis that you will work with an entity of a partial proposal at the time of submission of proposal. However, you may need to make some adjustments between the adoption to the grant decision.
In “2. Contents of Project”, it says that the contents of a partial proposal will be proceeded under the consideration of risks of technology adoption and timing of actualization and the entities of a comprehensive proposal will conduct analysis and compilation. What does it actually mean?
When a partial proposal was adopted, the contents of project may be changed as needed to coordinate it with a comprehensive proposals, etc. from a point of view of risks of technology adoption and timing of actualization, etc.
How will the entities of a comprehensive proposal and a partial proposal work together for implementing the project?
The specific methods of collaboration may be coordinated according to the situation. However, PMO can host a liaison meeting for the purpose of cooperation between the entities of a comprehensive proposal and a partial proposal.
Is it possible for the entities with partial proposals to request the entities of comprehensive proposal to provide necessary information to implement the project by compiling input and output information?
We assume that the entities of a comprehensive proposal and a partial proposal will share the information by the compilation of input and output information. If necessary, PMO will cooperate in coordinating between them, etc.
What should we do when it’s difficult to describe input and output information in detail at the time of the submission of proposal?
For the proposal, you can draw it up as your planned basis.
Regarding the gathering domestic and overseas wisdom in “”3. Operation of research and development”” , it says that it is important to be validated and reviewed objectively by third parties such as academic societies, etc. and such validation and review must distinctively be placed in the development plan or be set as a milestone. Is it necessary to write down the determined contents on the proposal?
For the proposal, you can draw it up as your planned basis.
On-site tests might significantly be delayed because of the situation of the site. In the case, how should the implementing entity cope with?
When an entity expects a delay of the implementation, please inform PMO of it as soon as possible. We would consider how to cope with.
When foreign currencies other than Japanese Yen are used for this project, how will the exchange rate be determined?
For the exchange rate, if the subsidized entity has an in-house rule of exchange rate, it can be applied. Otherwise, the basic exchange rate of Japanese currency of Bank of Japan will be used. Please be noted that the subsidy can be paid only in Japanese yen after the determination of the amount.
Regarding the Project (Development of Technologies for Grasping and Analyzing Properties of Fuel Debris)
Regarding “2. Contents of Project (1) Estimation of Properties of Fuel Debris”, only the MCC products should be targeted for the consideration?
Fuel debris itself is not supposed to be comprised of just the MCCI products. However, only the MCCI products are targeted for the consideration in this project.
How much is the upper limit of the subsidy for a partial proposal?
The upper limit of the subsidy for a partial proposal is 650 million yen.
Regarding “2. Contents of Project 3) Development of Essential Technologies for analyzing Fuel Debris, etc.”, is it necessary to analyze the sample of fuel debris retrieved at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station?
In this project, it is required to develop a technology for the sample of fuel debris which will be retrieved in the future and therefore, not analyze the actual debris.
Regarding the Project (Advancement of Retrieval Method and System of Fuel Debris and Internal Structures)
The contents of project by entities of a comprehensive proposal and a partial proposal may overlap. If so, how do you choose which one to be adopted as a subsidized entity?
To determine the adoption or the grant, the contents of project should be sorted out.
How much is the upper limit of the subsidy for a partial proposal?
The upper limit of the subsidy for a partial proposal is 2 billion yen.
Regarding “2. Contents of Project”, is the consideration of safety at cutting of fuel debris included in the specifications?
Yes, it should be considered the safety at cutting of fuel debris in “”4) Optimization study for ensuring safety of retrieval method and system””.
Regarding the Project (Advancement of Fundamental Technologies for Retrieval of Fuel Debris and Internal Structures)
Regarding “2. Contents of Project (1) 2) Development of fuel debris cutting and dust collection system”, what simulant fuel debris is simulated to be cut?
Ceramic, a mixture of metal and concrete, etc.
Regarding “2. Contents of Project (1) 2) Development of fueld debris cutting and dust collection system”, can we make simulant fuel debris containing radioactive materials and conduct a test on it?
You can make a proposal based on the application guidelines.
Regarding “Contents of Project (4) Development of Surveillance Technology for Retrieval of Fuel Debris”, is it in the scope of the comprehensive proposal?
The item can be included in the scope of the comprehensive proposal. Whether you include it in your proposal or not is arbitrary.
Regarding “2. Contents of Project (4) Development of monitoring technology for the fuel debris removal”, what Technology Readiness Level(TRL) should be achieved during the implementation of this subsidized project?
The TRL to be achieved during the project period should be set to TRL5.
Regarding the Project（Research and Development of Processing and Disposal of Solid Waste)
Is it possible to submit a partial proposal?
You can submit a proposal for one of the implementation items (1), (2), (3) and (4) or for any combination of those items.
Regarding the Project（Development of Technologies for In-depth Investigation of PCV Inside)
Can we submit a partial proposal?
No, only the comprehensive proposals are acceptable.
How is this project related to the Project of Development of Fundamental Technologies for Retrieval of Fuel Debris and Internal Structures (Development of Small Neutron Detectors) ?
In the development of small neutron detectors, it is assumed to attach them to small robots and conduct a survey from currently available access route. In this project, it is assumed to enlarge or so the access route in order to use equipments above a certain size.