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Ireland's National Development Plan (NDP), 2000-2006. Your Plan - Your Future.
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FAQS

Here you will find answers to Frequently Asked Questions about the NDP and CSF.

 

Additionality
The principle whereby Structural Funds should complement the contributions of the Member States rather than replacing or substituting normal public expenditure. In practice, it means that Member States must normally maintain public spending on each area of expenditure targeted by the Funds at no less than the level reached in the preceding programming period.

 

AGENDA 2000
Name given to the package of reforms proposed by the Commission in 1997 to prepare to the European Union for enlargement and the accession of several countries in Central and Eastern Europe. A significant element of these reform proposals concerned the operation and management of the Structural Funds. The Structural Funds reform package was finalised and agreed at the Berlin European Council meeting in March 1999.

 

B.M.W. Border, Midlands and Western Region
A N.U.T.S. II region covering 13 counties established in 1999.

 

C.A.P.
Common Agricultural Policy.

 

C.B.A.
Cost-Benefit Analysis.

 

Cofinancing
Refers to a situation where a proportion of the financing of a scheme/ project/ programme is obtained from an E.U. source of funding.

 

Cohesion Fund
Financing Mechanism established by the Maastricht Treaty on European Union to finance transport and environmental infrastructure projects in the E.U.. Specific and separate rules regarding eligibility and management apply to Cohesion Fund projects, which distinguishes it from the Structural Funds. Also, the Cohesion Fund, like the Community Initiatives, is not part of the C.S.F..

 

Community Initiatives
These are initiatives cofinanced by the Structural Funds and targeted at promoting specific issues, such as cross-border cooperation or rural development. For the 2000-2006 period, there are four Community Initiatives (INTERREG, LEADER, EQUAL, and URBAN). On the basis of Guidelines drawn up by the Commission, the Managing Authority for each Community Initiative draws up an Operational Programme for each one. Also, the Community Initiatives, like the Cohesion Fund, is not part of the C.S.F..

 

C.S.F.
Community Support Framework - this is the document agreed between the European Commission and the Irish Government, through which Structural Fund assistance is paid. The basis for negotiations on the C.S.F. is the National Development Plan. The C.S.F. includes an outline of priorities for action, quantified objectives and targets, and anticipated financial resources for investment, as well as monitoring, evaluation and control systems. Once adopted, Operational Programmes can then be approved by the Commission.

 

D.G.
Directorate-General (Of the European Commission). Until 1999, D.G.s were referred to by their number (for example, D.G. XVI was the Directorate General for Regional Policy). This practice was abolished in 1999, and D.G.s are now generally referred by an abbreviation of their name (for example, D.G. Regio).

 

E.A.G.G.F.
European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (also referred to as F.E.O.G.A.) - this fund is used to support agricultural incomes and structures, and to finance rural development measures.

 

E.C.
European Community.

 

E.I.B.
European Investment Bank - this body grants loans and guarantees at preferential rates for infrastructure investment and S.M.E. ventures in E.U. Member States and in non-E.U. countries.

 

EQUAL
A Community Initiative to combat discrimination in the workforce and promote equal opportunities between men and women in terms of access to employment, business and training.

 

E.R.D.F.
European Regional Development Fund - this fund supports productive investment and job creation, infrastructure projects, and local and S.M.E. development initiatives.

 

E.S.F. European Social Fund
- this fund supports education and training measures.

 

E.U.
European Union.

 

Eurostat
European Statistical Office.

 

Ex-ante
Evaluation Evaluation designed to provide an independent assessment of overall strategies and proposals for N.D.P. expenditure.

 

Ex-post Evaluation
Evaluation designed to examine the utilisation of resources and the efficiency, effectiveness and impact of expenditure.

 

F.E.O.G.A.
European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (also referred to as E.A.G.G.F. - for details, see E.A.G.G.F.).

 

F.I.F.G.
Financial Instrument for Fisheries Guidance - this fund supports the structural adjustment and modernisation of the fisheries sector.

 

G.D.P.
Gross Domestic Product.

 

G.N.P.
Gross National Product.

 

Implementing Body
Refers to agencies and bodies responsible for administering individual schemes, usually at measure or sub-measure level. Examples might include Government Departments, Local Authorities, FÁS, Enterprise Ireland, and the County/City Enterprise Boards.

 

INTERREG
A Community Initiative for inter-regional cooperation, which assists border regions and promotes joint projects between beneficiaries in different Member States.

 

LEADER
A Community Initiative to promote the development of eligible rural areas. The LEADER programme in the 2000-2006 programming period is known as LEADER+.

 

Managing Authority
Managing Authority refers to those Government Departments and Regional Assemblies responsible for administering an individual Operational Programme, or the C.S.F. as a whole.

 

Measure
A sub-set of a Sub-Programme.

 

Mid-term Evaluation
Evaluation designed to examine the initial results of the C.S.F. and O.P.s, the extent to which targets are being attained, to make proposals on any changes that may be required.

  

Monitoring Committee
Responsible for monitoring and supervision of expenditure under the N.D.P.. Each O.P. has a specific Monitoring Committee, and there is a Monitoring Committee for the C.S.F. as a whole. Monitoring Committees represent a broad range of interests from Government Departments, Regional Assemblies and Authorities, implementing bodies, to social partners, environmental and equality interests and others.

 

N.D.P.
National Development Plan - Refers to the Plan submitted by Government to the European Commission in 1999 on priorities for investment in the 2000-2006 period. Two earlier N.D.P.s have been submitted (for 1989-93 and 1994-99).

 

N.G.O.s
Non-Governmental Organisations.

 

N.U.T.S.
Nomenclature of Territorial Statistical Units - a system of classification of regions across the E.U. used by the European Commission. For the purposes of Structural Funds, the most important are the so-called N.U.T.S. II regions and N.U.T.S. III regions.

 

Objective 1 Region
The European Union classifies different regions into three different categories for Structural Fund purposes. For the 2000-2006 period, the B.M.W. Region in Ireland is classified as an “Objective 1” region (defined as regions whose development is lagging behind). The S&E Region is Ireland is eligible for “Objective 1 in transition” status. This is due to special arrangements whereby regions which were eligible for full Objective 1 status in 1999, but did not meet the criteria for 2000-2006, can receive support on a phasing out basis from 2000-2005.

 

O.J.
Official Journal of the European Union.

 

O.P.
Operational Programme - refers to E.U. cofinanced programmes drawn up by the Irish authorities and approved and adopted by the Commission to implement the C.S.F.. An O.P. can apply either to a specific region or to a specific development sector (for example, training and education). Each O.P. is administered by the relevant Managing Authority, and will normally contain a series of sub-programmes, measures and sub-measures. The financing allocated to each programme allows projects to be implemented on the ground. The Managing Authority details the eligible projects and beneficiaries to individual schemes in a programme complement.

 

Paying Authority
Paying Authorities are those Government Departments responsible for making payment applications to the European Commission for drawdown of E.U. funds. They are responsible for ensuring payment to final beneficiaries or to intermediary organisations, and that proper payment and financial management procedures are in place.

 

PEACE
A special support programme established in 1995 to promote cross-border peace and reconciliation and targeted at the border counties and at Northern Ireland.

 

Performance Reserve
Some 4% of the Structural Funds budget for each Member State has been allocated to a performance reserve. The performance reserve was allocated following the mid-term review (2003/04) to programmes on the basis of a limited set of indicators reflecting effectiveness, management and financial implementation.

 

P.P.P.s
Public-Private Partnerships.

 

Programme Complement
This document describes in detail the measures and sub-measures that have been described in each O.P., and outlines specific budgets for individual schemes, the level of assistance available, project selection criteria, and the type of beneficiary eligible for assistance. The programme complement is adopted by the Managing Authority responsible for the relevant O.P., is approved by the relevant Monitoring Committee, and is sent to the Commission for information purposes.

 

Programming Period
Structural Fund expenditure is based on multi-annual development programmes covering specific periods. The current programming period lasts from 2000-2006. Previous programming periods have covered the years 1989-93 and 1994-99.

 

Regional Assembly
There are 2 Regional Assemblies in Ireland, one each for the B.M.W. and S&E Regions. They are recognised at E.U. level as N.U.T.S. II Regions. The Assemblies act as Managing Authorities for the Regional O.P.s, and its members sit on Monitoring Committees. The Regional Assemblies also have a general function to coordinate delivery of public services in their region.

 

Regional Authority
There are 8 Regional Authorities in Ireland. They are recognised at E.U. level as N.U.T.S. III Regions. Members of the Regional Authorities sit on Monitoring Committees. The Regional Authorities also have a general function to coordinate delivery of public services in their region.

 

S&E
Southern and Eastern Region - a N.U.T.S. II region covering 13 counties established in 1999.

 

S.E.A.
Single European Act.

 

Shadow Price
A concept applied to situations where actual prices cannot be charged, or where the actual/ market prices charged are distorted in some way or do not reflect the real sacrifice when an activity is pursued. According to the 1999 Proposed Working Rules for Cost-Benefit Analysis, market prices should always be used in C.B.A. unless there is a clear reason for doing otherwise, as market prices usually reflect the opportunity cost of the project’s inputs.

 

 

S.M.E.s
Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises.

 

Stability and Growth Pact
An arrangement agreed between those E.U. Member States participating in the euro-zone in 1997, to ensure that budgetary discipline is maintained amongst participating countries. Under the Stability and Growth Pact, sanctions and financial penalties can be imposed by the Council of Finance Ministers against any Member State running an “excessive deficit” - defined as a budget deficit above 3% of G.D.P..

 

Structural Funds
The collective name given to the E.R.D.F., E.S.F., E.A.G.G.F. (Guidance section) and F.I.F.G.. The Cohesion Fund is not considered a Structural Fund.

 

Sub-Measure
A sub-set of a Measure.

 

Sub-Programme
A sub-set of an Operational Programme (O.P.).

 

T.E.N.s
Trans-European Networks.

 

T.E.U.
Treaty on European Union (aka Maastricht Treaty).

 

URBAN A
Community Initiative directed at development and regeneration of deprived urban areas.

 

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NDP/CSF Information Office,
15 Lower Hatch Street,
Dublin 2,
Ireland.
Tel:  +353 (0) 1 639 6280
Fax: +353 (0) 1 639 6281
Email: csfinfo@csfunits.irlgov.ie




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