BRUSSELS, Belgium (September 25,2008) - The European Commission adopted today the strategic directions of EU financial assistance to Bosnia (Multi-annual Indicative Planning Document – MIPD) for the years 2008-2010.
This assistance to Bosnia aims to help the country, on its path towards the EU, enhance political reform and building up of democratic institutions, economic reform, and approximation to European Standards in sectors related to the introduction and implementation of EU legislation. A special component of the programme will finance cross-border cooperation. For the period 2008-2010, the overall indicative amount of the EU financial assistance to Bosnia – in the form of grants from the Community budget - is 269.9 million Euros.
Financial support provided under the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA) aims at supporting Bosnia in its Stabilisation and Association process and preparing the country for future EU Accession. It reflects the priorities under the European Partnership, the assessment of the annual Progress Report, and the Stabilisation and Association Agreement (SAA) with the EU.
The main share of the budget is allocated to support activities under IPA Component I for Transition Assistance and Institution Building (254.5 million Euros). A smaller share will be allocated to IPA Component II for Cross-Border Cooperation activities (15.4 million Euros).
In more detail, the first political sub-component will focus on strengthening democratic institutions, constitutional reform, public administration reform, fiscal management, reform of the police and judiciary, fight against corruption, human rights and protection of minorities, returnees and vulnerable groups, civil society and media.
The second economic development sub-component will focus on improvement of the socio-economic situation of the country and its population supporting measures related to trade, employment, education and health, business environment and small and medium enterprises, macro-economic stabilisation, the quality of public spending, as well as regional development.
The third sub-component will finance actions to strengthen the ability of Bosnia to assume the obligations of EU membership by supporting the approximation to European Standards. The support will focus on the development and the implementation of strategies and policies to approximate to the European law (acquis) in the areas of internal market, sectoral policies and justice, freedom and security. The emphasis of the assistance will be placed on agriculture and rural development, transport, and energy. Examples of further supported sectors are environment, quality infrastructure, customs and taxation.
The component on "Cross-border cooperation" will support Bosnia's cross-border cooperation with its neighbouring countries, its participation in the Adriatic programme with Member States and in the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) transnational programmes "South East Europe" and " Mediterranean".
To ensure the maximum efficiency and effectiveness of the EU financial assistance the definition of the major areas of intervention and the type of actions to be financed has been closely coordinated with the international financial institutions active in Bosnia.