Twinning Eric Tonon ITTO Team Leader
1. Historical Background 2. Definitions 3. Main steps
HISTORICAL BACKGROUND Twinning has been conceived by the European Commission in 1997 to help the Candidate Countries of Central and Eastern Europe adopt the “Acquis communautaire” (12500 pieces of EU legislation).
HISTORICAL BACKGROUND IN A BROADER APPROACH = ALSO THE BEST ADMINISTRATIVE PRACTICES, I.E. THE CAPACITY TO IMPLEMENT THESE 12.500 LEGAL INSTRUMENTS AND TO ENFORCE THEM. TODAY TWINNINGS TAKE INTO ACCOUNT THIS BROADER APPROACH.
HISTORICAL BACKGROUND From 1998 to now, more than 1600 Twinnings have been implemented in the 12 new member States. This represents an amount of some 2 Billion €.
HISTORICAL BACKGROUND From 2003 the benefit of Twinnings was extended to the countries which have agreed with the EU to implement the “European Neighbourhood Policy” (Mediterranean countries, Ukraine, Moldova, and countries of the Caucasus)
DEFINITION OF TWINNING A “Peer-to-peer” cooperation between a public administration of an EU Member State and its counterpart in the beneficiary country (Azerbaijan) Objective: to help Azerbaijan get closer to the Acquis communautaire (Legislation and good practices)
DEFINITION OF TWINNING MAIN CHARACTERISTICS OF TWINNING The EU partner is selected through a competitive procedure by the Beneficiary administration and the European Commission The project is defined through a detailed work plan and a set of “mandatory results” that partners commit to achieve jointly
DEFINITION OF TWINNING MAIN CHARACTERISTICS OF TWINNINGS Full-time Resident Twinning Advisor during 12 to 36 months in the Azeri beneficiary administration With the support of a Project Leader and short-term experts from the EU partner administration
DEFINITION OF TWINNING ACTIVITIES Missions of EU experts (policy advice, legislation, institution building) - Seminars & conferences - Training (of trainers) - Study visits (in limited numbers) - Support to pilot projects (“coaching”) - Internships – “stages” (in the EU)
DEFINITION OF TWINNING INTEREST FOR AZERBAIJAN 1) Approximation of your legislation with that of the European Union which counts 485 Million citizens - and consumers – (United States: 300 Million). 2) If you adopt the same norms, or close ones, you increase your possibilities to export on this huge market (GNP = 12.000 Billion € = equivalent to that of the United States). 3) Political aspects: close light with EU structures
DEFINITION OF TWINNING INTEREST FOR AZERBAIJAN 4) Development of other types of cooperation (i.e. Justice and Home Affairs) 5) Confidence building with - and networking through - the Twin States.
DEFINITION OF TWINNING DIFFERENCES BETWEEN TWINNINGS AND TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE = PRIVATE EXPERTISE (CONSULTANTS) CAN BE IMPLEMENTED THROUGH TENDERS OF FRAMEWORK CONTRACTS
DEFINITION OF TWINNING DIFFERENCES BETWEEN TWINNINGS AND TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE TWINNINGS = PUBLIC EXPERTISE (CIVIL SERVANTS FROM THE MEMBER STATES) IN LINE WITH THE BENEFICIARY COUNTRY’S ADMINISTRATIONS IN TERMS OF STRENGTHENING A PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN TWO BODIES WORKING TOGETHER
DEFINITION OF TWINNING DIFFERENCES BETWEEN TWINNINGS AND TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE INTERESTING EXPERIENCE BOTH IN OLD AND NEW MEMBER STATES
MAIN STEPS TWINNING CYCLE • Identification of project • Call for Proposals • Submission of Proposals • Selection of Twinning Partner • Preparation and Finalization of Twinning Contract • Review and Signature of Contract with EC Input • Project Implementation • Monitoring and Reporting • Audit
MONTHS Preparation and start of Twinning project - Calendar
PROCEDURES FOR PROGRAMMING / IDENTIFICATION OF TWINNING PROJECTS NEXT ANNUAL EXERCISE IN AUTUMN 2009
MAIN ELEMENTS OF THE STRATEGIC FRAMEWORK • PCA • ENP Action Plan • NPAA • NIP 2007-2010 • Eastern Partnership (in the future)
PCA • Current Partnership and Cooperation agreement is the basis for contractual relations between the EU and Azerbaijan • However, it is a bit outdated and not very specific in terms of policy priorities • There is prospect of replacing it with a new form of an agreement foreseen in the European Partnership • ENP is a more focused and modernized framework
ENP ACTION PLAN: THE CONTEXT • The European Neighborhood Policy (ENP) was developed in the context of the EU’s 2004 enlargement, with the objective of avoiding the emergence of new dividing lines between the enlarged EU and its neighbors • The ENP concept was first outlined in a Commission Communication on Wider Europe in March 2003, followed by a more developed Strategy Paper on the European Neighborhood Policy published in May 2004. • Originally, the ENP was intended to apply to the EU immediate neighbors Algeria, Belarus, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, The Palestinian Authority, Syria, Tunisia and Ukraine. • In 2004, it was extended to also include the countries of the Southern Caucasus.
ENP AP • A key element of the European Neighbourhood Policy is the bilateral ENP Action Plans (ENP AP) mutually agreed between the EU and each partner country. • These set out an agenda of political and economic reforms with short and medium-term priorities. • Their implementation is promoted and monitored through the PCA institutions, including the Council, Committee and relevant sub-committees.
IMPLEMENTATION OF ENP AP • Implementation framework is decided at the national level • In the case of Azerbaijan, a special implementation program was developed based on the concept of the NPAA • NPAA (National Program for the Adoption of the Acquis) was the main tool for planning rapprochement with the EU in the new EU member states • It provides for more details of implementation relevant to the development of ideas for twinnings
PLANNING DOCUMENTS FOR THE EU ASSISTANCE • National Indicative Program for 2007-2010 • Annual Programs • These programs are also based on the PCA and an ENP AP in particular, but they take into account the relevant context of previous assistance and other factors
- European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI): financial instrument of the EU aiming at supporting the implementation of the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA) - National Aid Coordinator (NAC): senior official of the administration of the Republic of Azerbaijan, in charge of the overall coordination of the EU cooperation programmes (Mr. MUSTAFAYEV, Minister for Economic Development)
PROGRAMME ADMINISTRATION OFFICE (PAO): Administrative unit under the NAC, in charge of the overall coordination of the preparation, the implementation and the monitoring of Twinnings in Azerbaijan (Director: M. Asgar ALAKBAROV).
- Common Twinning Manual: a set of procedures adopted by the European Commission defining the modalities of preparation, implementation and monitoring of Twinnings - Twinning Fiche: detailed description of a Twinning project indicating the overall and the specific objectives, the expected results, as well as the budget and other implementation arrangements. It constitutes a key element of the Twinning contract - Twinning Contract: agreement signed between the European Commission and the Twin EU Member State - and acknowledged by the Azerbaijani administration - specifying the modalities of implementation of the Twinning.
- Beneficiary Administration: Azerbaijani administration concerned by the Twinning - Focal Point:senior civil servant of the beneficiary administration in charge of the overall coordination of the cooperation projects - Expected Mandatory Results: commonly agreed results to be achieved by the end of the Twinning. The mandatory results, as defined in the Twinning Fiche, are the core of the Twinning.
DURATION OF MAIN STEPS FROM IDEA TO TWINNING IMPLEMENTATION Definition and selection of project idea(3 months) Drafting a twinning “fiche” establishing project objectives, results, activities and requested expertise (4 months) Call for Member States proposals (2 months) Selection of Member State partner (1 month) Drafting of a twinning contract (6 months) Implementation of the project (12-36 months)
PROJECT IDENTIFICATION All potential beneficiaries which are part of section defined as priority for AP under construction by NAC, are called to put forward project ideas. They are supported to formalise this idea into a project concept note A first selection is made by Azeri Government and European Commission on the basis of the concept note This concept note includes : Project purpose Expected results Justification (i. e. link with approximation of acquis communautaire)
PROJECT IDENTIFICATION Request a Twinning only to help you in realizing a mission / tasks which are part of your concerned activities or help to realize a strategic objective of your institution. Twinning = additional work.
PROJECT DEVELOPMENT The project development consist in preparing a twinning project fiche. This is done with the support of two EU experts: one expert of the specific sector and another expert of twinning projects The experts are recruited through a competitive procedure on the basis of terms of reference (ToR) drafted themselves with the support of EU expert in close cooperation with the Beneficiary. The ToR contain: The information of the twinning synopsis Additional information on the project context The profile of the required experts A desciption of their assignment
THE PROJECT FICHE DEVELOPMENT PROCESS The two experts will come to Baku twice for approximately two weeks for the first mission and one week for the second. They should be able to prepare with you a draft fiche after their first mission. The second mission will help to review the contents of the twinning fiche and adjust it. This should be a joint exercise. The twinning fiche must be endorsed by (1) the beneficiary – of course! (2) the PAO and (3) the European Commission;
CONTENTS OF THE TWINNING FICHE The Twinning Fiche mainly consists of: A description of the beneficiary and context of the project; A definition of the project objectives and expected results An outline of the project activities The profile of the EU expertise which is sought Main project interlocutors in the beneficiary administration
CALL FOR PROPOSALS • EC services take a leading role in the selection of a twinning partner • The European Commission circulates the Twinning Fiche to National Contact Points (NCP) for Twinning in the EU member states (MS). • EU member states administrations have approximately 8 weeks to prepare and submit their proposals to the EC through the NCPs. • The MS may submit it alone or in consortium with other member states.
CALL FOR PROPOSALS • It is recommended to take prior contacts with the MS to encourage their participation • Different means to promote the forthcoming call of proposals: letters to the MS institutions, distribution of information during official visits etc.
Cycle of the projects: from call for proposals to start of projects Sending of Twinning Fiche to National Contact Point (NCP)– to NCP via mail from the Commission National Contact Points sends the proposals to the Commission (by mail) Notification on results to the Member States Verification, selection and evaluation of proposals Start of Twinning The partners work on Twinning contract Signing of the Twinning contract
Selection meeting –participants • For Member States : • Project Leader and Twinning Resident Adviser • Representative of embassy of the leading member state • Representative of new partner member state (if available) • Jury: • Chairman of the Selection Commission (no right for voting), Commission’s responsible for contractual issues • Representative of the Beneficiary • Two representatives from the Commission
Selection meeting – participants (continuation) • Observers (with permission of the contractual parties, no right for voting): • PAO representative • Beneficiary • Another organization involved in the project
Selection meeting – Presentation of the Member States • It has to complete the written proposal (after reading by the jury). • It has to be justified and insist on main provisions of the proposal. • Main directions are indicated in the annexes of the Twinning Manual. • The presentation must be in one of the working language of the European Commission (English, French, German). It must be assured that the selected language is well understood by the jury. There is no consecutive interpretation, but in order to clarify some issues the Beneficiary can use an interpreter.
Decision of authorization and notification • Formally : Jury prepares the recommendations and authorise the contracting parties (European Commission/Delegation). • The notification is addressed to all Member States (all proposals) mentioning grounds of the selection. • The date of the notification starts from preparation of the contract date (during maximum six months).
CONTRACT PREPARATION A JOINT EXERCISE BETWEEN MEMBER STATE AND BENEFICIARY
Contents of the twinning contract (I) • Once the choice of the partner has been notified, both partner administrations (BC&MS) have to draw up the detailed Twinning Work Plan, which together with other annexes and budget breakdown form the Twinning contract. Twinning Contract ► Annex V Standard request for payment and financial identification form ► Annex VI Model audit certificate ► Annex VII Special financial Annex ► Annex VIII Mandates (for Consortium of Member States) ► Special Conditions ► Annex I Description of the Action; including Working Plan ► Annex II General Conditions ► Annex III Budget of the Action ► Annex IV Contract award Procedures
Twinning contract preparation procedure (I) Maximum 6 months for the preparation of the twinning contract Twinning partners finalise the Twinning Contract Final approval PAO EC Delegation Line GDs Twinning partners submit a draft Twinning Contract for assessment to the PAO DEL formulates a consolidated feedback (Consultations with Line GDs, Delegation of the EC, Financial officer) 3 months from the notification of the selection 4 weeks 6 weeks
Contents of the twinning contract (II) The Work Plan (WP) WP should detail the input and contributions made by each of the twinning project partners making clear “who does what”, organizationally and methodologically, including work and time schedule. The Budget The budget should provide detailed costs of all activities. But it is not a “straight jacket”. It will be possible (and necessary) to revise it in the course of project implementation
Contents of the twinning contract (III) special conditions Purpose Implementation period of the action Financing the action Technical and financial reporting and payment arrangements Contact addresses (of all stakeholders) Annexes (attached to the Special conditions) Other specific conditions applying to the action
Twinning contract – The Work Plan (Annex A1) The Work Plan is a further development of the project fiche and of the selected proposal. It contains A description of the action The overall and specific objectives The mandatory results In the case of a Twinning Light, annex A1 is the Twinning Project Fiche
Twinning contract – The Work Plan - Signatories The MS Project Leader The BC Project Leader