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Frequently Asked Questions

General Information on IPA Program

What is IPA?

  • IPA is the abbreviation consisting of the initials of Instrument for Pre-Accession, which is the English expression of the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance.
  • With the IPA programs, the EU provides grant funds to the candidate countries to be used in certain areas and priorities in order to prepare them for full membership economically and socially.
  • The European Union (EU) 's accession process in the Western Balkan countries and Turkey economic and social development to support and enhance institutional capacity in order to ensure the transfer of resources more efficiently to projects in the relevant sectors is a mechanism created in 2007.
  • IPA has replaced Phare, ISPA, SAPARD, CARDS, Turkey pre-accession programs.
  • IPA is organized to meet real pre-accession needs directly, effectively and efficiently, with a single simplified framework.
  • The second period is being implemented and it is in line with the Multi-Annual Financial Framework, also known as the EU's financial perspective. Each period consists of 7 budget years.
  • It has strict rules.
  • The budget period is different, the implementation period is different.
  • The budget allocated for each year has a limited usage period, which is called the eligible expenditure  period. It creates time pressure on projects.

Why is the IPA program created for ?

  • To achieve more efficient results with available resources by increasing the coherence and integrity of EU initiatives,
  • To assist candidate countries to fully implement the EU legislation ("Acquis Communautaire") upon membership, and to support potential candidate countries to gradually adapt to EU legislation,
  • In order to gradually transfer the management of EU funds to the administrations in the beneficiary country,
  • To encourage greater ownership of pre-accession projects
  • It was created to ensure that countries adapt to the management procedures they need to apply to benefit from EU funds with member state status. 

Why the EU provides IPA funds to Turkey?

EU grants not only provide all candidate and potential candidate countries covered by the IPA in Turkey. With the help of these grants, it is aimed to harmonize and apply the whole acquis, and to be ready for common agriculture and harmonization programs that will be implemented once a member becomes a member.

In which regulation the list of  institutions and their tasks in the IPA system are stated?

It is included in the Presidential Circular No. 2019/20 published in the official newspaper numbered 30908 dated October 4, 2019.

Is the IPA fundtransferred to the  budget of the beneficiary institutions?

No, it is transferred to accounts opened specifically for IPA programs by the Ministry of Treasury and Finance.

Who is implementing the tender process  and payment of the projects that receive IPA funds?

Institutions authorised for implementing the EU budget.

Which institutions are authorized to implement the EU budget in Turkey?

  1. Ministry of Treasury and Finance, Central Finance and Contracts Unit
  2. Ministry of Environment and Urbanisation
  3. Ministry of Industry and Technology
  4. Ministry of Family, Labour and Social Services
  5. Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry
  6. Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure

How to receive EU budget implementation authorization?

The Commission needs to transfer the EU Budget implementation authority. For the transfer, the National Authorizing Officer defined in the Presidential Circular No. 2019/20 (the Deputy Minister to whom the General Directorate of Foreign Economic Relations of the Ministry of Treasury and Finance is affiliated) makes a request to the Commission on behalf of the relevant institution. The National Authorizing Officer makes a preliminary assessment. After this preliminary assessment, the EU Commission carries out an audit and, if deemed necessary, on-site verification. In this process, the institutional capacity of the institution to be authorized by the Commission auditors is examined. The Commission auditors confirm that job descriptions and processes are defined and written, the existence of an effective internal control system, that the information technology infrastructure is sufficient, and that a sufficient number of personnel are employed. A Financing Agreement is concluded between the relevant Commission and the institution delegated for the budget to be implemented.

 

Is the whole IPA funds committed by the EU  transferred to IPA accounts opened by the Ministry of Treasury and Finance.?

No, it is transferred piece by piece, taking into account payment estimates.

 

For what purposes are IPA funds used in our country?

 Capacity building for alignment and implementation of the EU acquis

 It has been carried out within the framework of the objectives of building capacities for economic and social cohesion.

 

IPA-I PERIOD

Which budget period does IPA-I cover?

2007-2013

How much EU funds allocated to our country in the IPA-I Period?

7-year total of 4.7 billion Euros

What is the time limit for IPA-I period?

Expenses could be made until December 31, 2017.

Under which categories was the EU funds used in the IPA-I period?

I. Transition Period Support and Institutional Building

II. Cross-Border Cooperation

III. Regional Development

IV. Human Resources Development

V. Rural Development (IPARD)

 

IPA-II PERIOD

Which budget period does IPA-II cover?

2014 - 2020

How much EU funds are allocated to our country in the IPA-II Period?

For 7 years in total 3.2 billion Euros.

Under which subjects  the EU funds are being used in the IPA-II period ? Who are the responsible institution (s) assigned to each subject?

1. Democracy and Governance (Ministry of Foreign Affairs) (Harmonization with EU Acquis, Union Programs and Civil Society)

2. Justice, Home Affairs and Fundamental Rights (Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Internal Affairs.

3. Transport (Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure)

4. Environment and Climate (Ministry of Environment and Urbanization)

5. Energy (Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources)

6. Competitiveness and Innovation (Ministry of Industry and Technology)

7. Employment, Human Resources Development and Social Policies (Ministry of Family, Labour and Social Services)

8. Agriculture and Rural Development (Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry)

9.Regional and Cross-Border Cooperation (Ministry of Foreign Affairs)


IPA AND THE MINISTRY OF TRANSPORT AND INFRASTRUCTURE

Our Ministry has obtained the authority to implement the European Union budget in our country, that is, it is one of the 6 institutions whose institutional capacity is deemed sufficient to commit with IPA grant.

 

Does the European Union finance every project offered by Turkey in the transport sector in accordance with budget constraints?

No.

Who decides which projects will be financed? European Union or Turkey?

There is a program in which an IPA grant for the transport sector is planned. This program was prepared by our Ministry and was approved by the EU Commission. This document, called the Transport Sectoral Operational Program, in which the priorities of the sector are determined, contains information on how much funds will be allocated to which priority and which projects will be carried out under those priorities. These programs are not compatible project to use the IPA grants, proposed by the Ministry, it must be authorized by the Commission or has been approved by the EU Delegation to Turkey.

 

Why does the EU provide grant to a railway project in Turkey?

The EU does not provide grant funding for every railway project in Turkey, it provides funding for projects on lines that are involved in the planning of the European Union and which they think will benefit the Union as well.

The basis of the European Union's policy in the transport sector is to facilitate the free movement of people, goods and services between member states and to create the physical infrastructure of the “Single European Transport area”. The planned concrete version of this physical infrastructure is the Trans-European transport networks (TEN-T). The EU plans infrastructure investments with a network approach. Accordingly, TEN-T has a two-layer structure. The comprehensive network includes the EU's overall transport infrastructure. The core network, on the other hand, includes the most strategically important and investment-priority transport infrastructures of the EU.

Trans-European networks No. 21, one of the chapters where membership negotiations were held, has also been identified as the transport network in our country, which will be included in the TEN-T network as part of the technical studies of the chapter. IPA grants can be applied not only for every transportation infrastructure project but also for infrastructure projects in Turkey'S TEN-T network. The EU gives priority to projects within the core network.

Halkalı-Kapıkule railway line Cerkezkoy-Kapıkule Section construction project selection 21. it is related to the determination of the “Kapıkule-Kars railway axle” as a project “for European benefit”, which is one of the technical closing criteria of the chapter. While the chapter was closed, it was agreed with the EU to include an EU grant in the financing of the Halkalı-Kapıkule Railway Line project, which is an important part of this axis.

Does the EU have any involvement in the process after the project has been decided?

IPA grants are strictly regulated. The EU Commission has the pre-approval authority in every process from the selection of the project, to the preparation of the tender file, from the management of the tender processes, to the signing of the contract, until the project is completed. It uses these powers or through authorized institutions such as the EU Delegation to Turkey.

 

How is the tenderprocess for projects receiving IPA grants?

The tender of projects to be financed under these funds is carried out differently from the tender procedure in our country. It is tendered according to the rules of PRAG (Practical Guide on Contract Procedures for European Union External Actions), which is required by the EU for external aid.

 

How can these tender notices be followed?

It is published on the program website at tenders  and on the website of the Commission at the address given below.

https://webgate.ec.europa.eu/europeaid/online-services/index.cfm?do=publi.welcome&userlanguage=en


What is the EU approach to unforeseen problematic situations such as extension of time in projects receiving IPA Grants or increase in budget?

The grant process has very strict rules. The EU does not increase the IPA grant committed at the beginning of the project. It is absolutely not included in the court costs and compensation that may arise during the application. The time extension should not exceed the IPA implementation period. It can request the full repayment of the promised grant if it is passed.

 

What has the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure done in the IPA-I Period?

Our Ministry in the IPA-I Term III. He prepared and carried out the Transport Operational Program within the scope of Regional Development, which is a component. Information on the program is given below.

  • The amount of IPA fund allocated: 574.3 Million Euros
  • Contractual Allocation: 570 Million Euros
  • Contractuality Rate: 99%


Three railway construction projects and many technical support projects have been carried out within the scope of this program.

 

                                             

 

225.1 Million Euros, which is the highest grant given by the European Union to a single project during the IPA I period, was used in the Modernization of Samsun-Kalın Railway Line Project, which was completed within the scope of our program.

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What does the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure do in IPA-II Period?

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