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​​1. What is the role of the Programme Implementation Directorate? 

The role of the Programme Implementation directorate is that of monitoring the implementation of National and EU programmes and other strategic initiatives undertaken within line departments and/or entities.

2. What are Structural Funds?

The Structural Funds were created to help those regions, within Europe, whose development is lagging behind, in order to reduce the differences between regions and create a better economic and social balance within and between Member States. EU structural funds are categorised into two distinctive programmes:

European Regional Development Fund - ERDF

The principal objective is to promote economic and social cohesion within the European Union through the reduction of imbalances between regions or social groups.

European Social Fund - ESF

A financial instrument for investing in people. Its mission is to help prevent and combat unemployment, to equip Europe's workforce to face new challenges, and to keep people in touch with the labour market.

These two funds work together to support economic and social development across Europe.

3. How are EU Structural Funds regulated?

To tap EU Structural Funds each Member State must draw up and submit to the European Commission a plan setting out its investment priorities for EU Structural funding. This plan, in Malta’s case is the National Strategic Reference Framework (NSRF) 2007-2013, which forms the basis of negotiations between the Government and the European Commission on the allocations of EU funding. The NSRF document includes an outline of priorities for action, objectives and targets, anticipates financial resources, and monitoring, evaluation and control systems. Subsequently two operational programmes, I and II, have been drawn up and these set out the framework within which EU funding will be spent during the programming period 2007-2013. OP I will be co-financed by the ERDF and OP II by the ESF

4. Which is the entity that manages EU and bilateral funding programmes?

The Planning and Priorities Coordination Division (PPCD) is the Managing Authority for EU Structural Funds, the Cohesion Fund and other programmes. This entity, which forms part of the Office of the Prime Minister aims to ensure the efficient management of European Union and bilateral funding programmes by providing effective leadership and coordination across all stakeholders.

5. What are the key steps involved in applying for EU Funding?

DPI is in constant contact with PPCD to check on any updates with regards to the pre- announcement of calls. Once a call is pre-announced, DPI informs all Directors General and CEO’s for further dissemination as they deem appropriate. This pre announcement period is usually utilised to draw up a project proposal. During this period, DPI will offer support to all interested applicants. After about 4 months from pre announcement, PPCD issues the proper call. DPI, once again, informs all Directors General, CEO’s and prospective project leaders to prepare an application proposal. Information sessions by PPCD and guidance in preparing the application are given to interested stakeholders throughout the whole process.

6. How does DPI facilitate the submission of MHEC project proposals for EU funding and what follow-up actions are taken?

DPI facilitates the submission of project proposals by providing guidance, advice and support to interested parties. Furthermore, following approval of projects, DPI oversees their implementation, verifies the eligibility of all payment claims and monitors the disbursement of funds. DPI acts also as a liaison between project leaders and the relevant authorities.

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