What is the main purpose of the EU Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance to the Republic of Macedonia?

The purpose of the EU Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance to the Republic of Macedonia is to progressively align the Republic of Macedonia, as a candidate country with the standards and policies of the European Union, including the acquis communautaire, in the view towards EU membership.

What is decentralised management of the EU assistance?

In the context of the assistance provided in the pre-accession process, decentralised management means enhancing the ownership of the management of the assistance by the relevant national authorities in the Republic of Macedonia, at least with respect to activities related to tendering, contracting and payments. All the decisions concerning the procurement and award of contracts taken by the Contracting Authority will be subject of an ex-ante approval by the European Commission.

Do Macedonian companies have priority over other companies while applying for IPA funds in Macedonia?

No, the same rules apply for all eligible bidders, no matter whether they are based in Macedonia or abroad. During the procurement procedures, the Contracting Authority must satisfy conditions for ensuring equal treatment, meaning that all bidders must be treated equally and evaluators must remain impartial.
The strict rules governing the way in which contracts are awarded helps to ensure that suitably qualified contractors are chosen without bias and that the best value for money is obtained, with the full transparency appropriate to the use of public funds.

Who selects the entities/ individuals to receive IPA funds?

CFCD in the Ministry of Finance acts as Contracting Authority for the IPA Components I-IV and is responsible for all tendering, contracting and payment activities. CFCD organizes the evaluation and selection of offers while the actual evaluation of offers is performed by qualified experts (evaluators) nominated by relevant institutions and convened by CFCD.
The evaluation and selection are organised according to clear and transparent procedural rules set by the European Commission’s Practical Guide to contract procedures for EC external actions.

Which rules will apply for the procurement process for the projects to be financed under IPA?

 All the tendering and contracting activities that will be applied during the contracting phase by the Contracting Authority will be in line with the procedural rules from the European Commission’s Practical Guide to contract procedures for European Commission external actions (PRAG Rules).
In the case of non-respect of the procedures established in the PRAG Rules, the expenditure related to the operations involved are ineligible in terms of Community financing.
The Macedonian legislation, namely the Law on Public Procurement and the respective by-laws are not applicable for procurement financed under IPA.

Who can apply for grants financed under IPA?

Participation in the award of grants contracts is open on equal terms to all natural and legal persons having in mind that the grant can only be made for an operation whose immediate objective is non-commercial. Grants made from the EU Budget are not intended for profit making.
For detailed information on this issue please refer to:
http://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/work/procedures/implementation/practical_guide/documents/2008new_prag_final_en.pdf (Chapter 6. Grants).

Can twinning projects be financed under IPA?

Yes, Twinning as an instrument for institution building which can be financed from IPA. A Twinning project is a joint project between state administrations of the Republic of Macedonia and EU Member States. It is not a one-way delivery of Technical Assistance from a MS, but rather the beneficiary country commits itself to undertaking and funding reforms, while the Member State supports the process for the duration of the project.

Who can be a Twinning partner of Macedonian administration?

Any Member State (MS) administration is automatically eligible as a Twinning partner. However, the Commission may decide, upon a proposal given by a MS, to allow for a specific MS semi-public body to be mandated to implement Twinning projects according to the same conditions, as if they were an integral part of the administration. For a detailed list of the mandated bodies per MS see:

What does the SEE (South-East Europe) Transnational Programme stand for?

The SEE Transnational Cooperation Programme supports transnational partnerships within the SEE region in order to facilitate concrete and visible territorial cooperation projects across the following priority axes:

  1. Development of the innovation capacity
  2. Improvement of the accessibility
  3. Promotion of sustainable development of metropolitan areas and regional systems of settlements
  4. Protection and improvement of the environment.

Under this Programme, public authorities and other public bodies from the eligible SEE region can jointly submit project proposals to be financed under ERDF and IPA. The bodies for managing and implementing this programme are based in Budapest, Hungary and in the partner countries. Partners from the following countries/regions are eligible to apply: Albania, Austria, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Romania, Croatia, Macedonia, Greece, Hungary, Italy (indicated regions), Serbia, Montenegro, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey (indicated regions), Moldova, Ukraine (indicated regions). For more information please see: http://www.southeast-europe.net/en/.

What does the IPA Regional Programme 2007 stand for?

The IPA Regional Programme is financed under the TAIB IPA Component and implemented by the Commission on a centralised basis. It includes Project Fishes developed under the following programmes:

  1. Horizontal programme for Tempus, Erasmus Mundus and Youth in Action in the Western Balkans,
  2. Regional programme to support the update, implementation and monitoring of the Integrated Border Management strategies and related Action Plans and to develop regional and cross border initiatives, and
  3. Regional Programme on trade Development in the Western Balkans.