The National Renewable Energy Centre is incorporated as a non-profit foundation, which is called "CENER-CIEMAT Foundation". All its trustees are public institutions, such as the Spanish Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness, Ciemat, the Ministry of Energy, Tourism and the Digital Agenda and the Government of Navarra.
In the case of the CENER-CIEMAT Foundation, the foundational mission is:
- to provide support for R&D+I activity of firms by rendering technological services, executing R&D projects under contract and in a consulting capacity.
- to develop production technologies and exploit energy sources through research and development.
- and to facilitate maximum penetration of renewable energies in the energy system by generating the necessary tools and services to provide solutions to technical problems and relational difficulties between the various agents within the systems.
A basic part of the essence of CENER derives from its trustees' commitment to achieving a high level of self-funding and extending the scope of its activities nationwide.
Economic advantages of Foundations
Foundations are entities intended to provide a public good, and are bound to devote all their activity and assets to achieving that end. This is known as their foundational mission. This means, among other things, that they must reinvest profits into the foundation and are not allowed to recuperate donations made by trustees or other donors.
Foundations also offer major advantages for entities that decide to contract them or to donate money or other kinds of resources to them. In the case of a contract, apart from the corporate tax rebate, there is an additional rebate of 10%. In the case of donations, the donor is free to decide what the donation will be used for and is entitled to the same favourable conditions as apply in a contracted R&D project.