In the final stages of programming – state of play of the 2014-20 and 2007-13 programmes

Vironen, Heidi (2014) In the final stages of programming – state of play of the 2014-20 and 2007-13 programmes. In: 37th IQ-Net Conference, 2014-11-19 - 2014-11-21.

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Abstract

•Programming has advanced considerably. By the start of November 2014, all but one of the 28 Partnership Agreements were agreed, although only a small number of operational programmes have been approved. •In the IQ-Net countries, the negotiations of the PAs have been administratively challenging. For some negotiations have focused on descriptive issues, while for others there has been a greater emphasis on content, including: •The need to ensure greater thematic focus. The Commission has adopted a selective approach to supporting transport and energy infrastructure (TO7), particularly in the more developed Member States. There are also specific limitations for supporting ICT (TO2) and energy efficiency within the low carbon economy theme (TO4). •Specific issues have also been reported concerning the ex ante conditionalities. For instance, with respect to the conditionality on ‘research and innovation’, the information on smart strategies has in some instances been insufficient, the comments and changes by the Commission not necessarily viewed to be justified, and multi-annual budgets difficult to produce. •The need to improve intervention logic and results-orientation. In addition, specific problems have been faced with setting indicators. •Some issues have also arisen in relation to new Commission Acts and guidelines. One example is the Commission’s proposal to introduce a new fraud prevention system. •Amongst the IQ-Net programme authorities, programmes have been opened for funding in Denmark, Finland and Nordrhein-Westfalen. •However, the main focus is on other key arrangements to ensure a successful start for 2014-20 period, including: programme management arrangements; monitoring and compliance with eCohesion; as well as preparations for communication activities. •The rate of financial absorption of 2007-13 programmes has increased in the EU28 over the past six months, albeit at a slower rate than in the previous periods. •Concerns in the IQ-Net programmes continue to relate to payment interruptions, the level of payments and decommitment. •IQ-Net programme authorities are progressing with preparations for closure, but are somewhat concerned with the amount of work involved and the capacities needed for this process.