Presentation of the IPA before the Council for development of the SWPR

Let me begin by thanking you for your presence at this meeting, because with your reporting you contribute to the promotion of European perspectives as one of the most important segments of the European integration process. As a National IPA Coordinator, today at this meeting with the Council for development of the Southwest planning region, together with the team for allocation of foreign assistance to the Secretariat for European Affairs, we will present the conditions, the possibilities for financing projects for the local self-government with the funds from the European funds. This was stated by Bujar Osmani, Deputy Prime Minister of the Government of the Republic of Macedonia for European Affairs, at today's meeting with the Mayors from the Southwest planning region held in Struga.

 

I have repeated several times, Osmani said, that the approximation to the European Union does not only mean the implementation of reforms, cancellations and compromises, but that approximation to the European Union means approximation to European values, European rules, but also standards. This conditional second segment is the most important for citizens, because approximation to European rules and standards means free trade, economic prosperity, investment in infrastructure, investment in job creation, better education, or overall, convergence to the European Union means a better life for citizens and bringing our standard closer to that of the Member States of the Union.

 

In order to meet these European perspectives, we need to establish active cooperation between the central government and the municipalities, said Bujar Osmani, in order to be able to jointly realize the capital investments coming from the central budget, but also to improve the capacities for increased absorption of funds from IPA and other funds for bilateral assistance for Macedonia. Namely, through the IPA instrument, approximately 600 million euros, grants from the countries of the European Union are made available to the Republic of Macedonia for a period of seven years. This should be added to other EU funds and funds from bilateral donors, which additionally opens up financial resources for aid in the Republic of Macedonia, and here the municipalities should be involved with projects for their absorption.

 

In addition to this, it is also the need for the municipalities, as best they can, to prepare for the use of large European funds - to prepare and apply with serious and complete projects of strategic interest.
One of the most important programs for obtaining non-refundable foreign assistance is the possibility of participating in the cross-border program. These municipalities, from the South-west planning region, in cooperation with the border regions of the Republic of Albania and the Republic of Greece have the opportunity to develop joint projects, and thus directly contribute to improving the welfare of citizens on both sides of the border.

In addition to this, it is also the need for the municipalities, as best they can, to prepare for the use of large European funds - to prepare and apply with serious and complete projects of strategic interest.

 

One of the most important programs for obtaining non-refundable foreign assistance is the possibility of participating in the cross-border program. These municipalities, from the Southwest planning region, in cooperation with the border regions of the Republic of Albania and the Republic of Greece have the opportunity to develop joint projects, and thus directly to contribute to improving the welfare of citizens on both sides of the border.

 

In addition to the cross-border cooperation, there is a possibility for municipalities to participate with proposals for realization of large infrastructure projects of their territory, which, besides the direct economic benefit in terms of engagement of local companies and employment, mean creating conditions and potential for the promotion of the local economic development.

 

Of course, there is an opportunity for the municipalities to provide participation and realization of activities that represent direct assistance for human resource development in support of self-employment, implementation of active employment measures, as well as support to vulnerable groups for greater social inclusion at the local level, said at the end of his address to the mayors of the South-west Planning Region, Bujar Osmani, Deputy Prime Minister in the Government of the Republic of Macedonia charged with European affairs

 

At the meeting, the expert services from the Sector for European Affairs presented the possibilities for financing by the EU, for which the municipalities from the Region can apply as applicants.

 

 

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© 2011 - Centre for development of the south-west planning region