Fresh EU support to reforms and socio-economic development in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Brussels – The European Commission adopted annual programme for Bosnia and Herzegovina under the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA). The programme has a budget of over 91 million euro, which will support Bosnia and Herzegovina reform efforts on its path towards European integration.

The 2011 IPA programme is based on the priorities designed by the EU together with the Bosnia and Herzegovina authorities, local stakeholders and other donors.

The funding will focus on justice and police reform, the strengthening of institutions to prepare Bosnia and Herzegovina potential accession to the European Union, and education reform. It will also support the construction of roads, water supply and waste water facilities, as well as promote development of small and medium enterprises, agriculture and trade with neighbouring countries and the EU. This support will help provide Bosnia and Herzegovina citizens with better legal protection, better security, better employment chances and better social security.

The funding will have a deeply positive impact on the lives of Bosnia and Herzegovina citizens and will support the country path towards the EU. I welcome the success of this process despite the difficulties encountered on the road. I strongly encourage Bosnia and Herzegovina s authorities to set up effective coordination mechanisms to so that the programme can be implemented smoothly and efficiently, said European Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighbourhood Policy Štefan Füle.

Background

Since 2007, countries wishing to join the EU have received focused EU funding and support through a single channel – the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA). The total pre-accession funding for the period 2007-2013 is €11.5 billion. IPA consists of five components:

Component I: Transition Assistance and Institution Building

Component II: Cross-Border Cooperation

Component III: Regional Development

Component IV: Human Resources Development

Component V: Rural Development

The execution of EU pre-accession aid under the IPA programme begins with the definition of the Commissions intentions in terms of indicative financial allocations. This is followed by the adoption of the strategies, based on the countries specific needs, which have been adopted over the last few weeks setting out the priorities for EU financial assistance for the period 2011-2013. The next step is the preparation, along with the beneficiaries, of programmes to set the frame for the yearly financial allocation. Finally, the programmes are implemented through specific projects on the country or at the regional level.

For more information:

–    Bosnia and Herzegovina country profile

–    Individual strategies

–    Examples of previous EU-funded projects