Issue 263

CSF logoCall for Applications for the Annual Assembly 2017

20161129tl_eap-csf_136-e1487180739554The Steering Committee of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum (EaP CSF) invites all interested parties to submit expressions of interest to participate in the 9th Annual Assembly of the Forum that will take place in the week of 23 October 2017. The place of the Annual Assembly is to be determined. The submission of expressions of interest is a necessary step in the selection process to participate in the EaP CSF Annual Assembly.

The Annual Assembly of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum is the key event conducted on an annual basis since 2009. It is the highest decision making body in the EaP CSF and serves as a platform for debate on the achievements of the Forum and the EaP in general, as well as on civil society contribution to the reform process in the region. Every year the event brings together over 200 civil society representatives from the EaP region and the EU, as well as other stakeholders.

WHO CAN APPLY?

The Civil Society Forum is open to a wide range of civil society organisations (CSOs): NGOs, think tanks, non-profit foundations, trade unions, employers’ organisations, professional associations, chambers of commerce, business associations, national and international CSOs/networks and other relevant civil society actors from the EaP region, but also from the EU Member States and international organisations.

One applicant organisation can be represented by only one person at the Annual Assembly. One person can represent only one CSO respectively.

CSOs dealing with women’s issues/rights are encouraged to apply. The organisations are encouraged to delegate women as their representatives to the Annual Assembly of the Forum.

 SELECTION PROCEDURE

Attendees will be selected based on the following criteria:

  • Eligibility– applicants must be non-governmental, non-partisan (not affiliated institutionally with a political party) organisations that respect democratic values. They should also be bona fide, independent organisations in their own right.
  • Diversity of spheres of activity– to ensure the involvement of all the major components of civil society and adequate representation for each of the thematic Working Groups[1]and Subgroups[2].
  • Involvement in the EaP– applicants should be involved in activities relevant to the Eastern Partnership priorities.
  • Involvement in the EaP CSF –we invite applicants who were actively involved in the activities of the previous EaP CSF Annual Assemblies, its National Platforms and Working Groups, as well as those who are ready to be actively contributing to the work of the CSF in 2017/2018.
  • Rotation– whereby eligible, independent CSOs that have not participated in previous Annual Assemblies are given priority over those that have already participated.

The EaP CSF Steering Committee in consultation with the European External Action Service (EEAS)/European Commission will carry out the selection of the participants for the 9th EaP CSF Annual Assembly.

The selection procedure will include several steps. To learn more about the selection procedure please follow the link.

[1]Working Groups:

WG1 – Democracy, Human Rights, Good Governance & Stability,

WG2 – Economic Integration and Convergence with EU legislation,

WG3 – Environment, Climate Change & Energy Security,

WG4 – Contacts between People,

WG5 – Social & Labour Policies and Social Dialogue

[2] WG1 subgroups: 1. Human rights; 2. Civil society participation in decision-making process; 3. Elections; 4. Media Freedom; 5. Security; 6. Anti-corruption; 7. Judicial reform; 8. Democracy and cooperation; 9. Gender; 10. Regional development and confidence building; 11. Local government and public administration reform.

WG2 subgroups: 1. Agriculture & rural development; 2. Regional Policy, Territorial & Crossborder Cooperation; 3. Small & Medium-sized Enterprises; 4. Trade & related regulatory cooperation; 5. Harmonisation of Digital Markets; 6. Transport; 7. Statistics

WG3 subgroups: 1. Environment; 2. Climate change; 3. Energy security.

WG4 subgroups: 1. Youth; 2. Culture; 3. Education; 4. Contacts between seniors; 5. Conflict Resolution. 

WG5 subgroups: 1. Social dialogue; 2. Social Inclusion of People with Disabilities; 3. Social policy.

 PARTICIPANTS AND OBSERVERS

The organisations taking part in the Annual Assembly of the Forum in the status of a participant will be part of the national delegation of the respective EaP country (limited to 20 slots per country) or a group of CSOs from EU Member States (limited to 40 slots).

Only participants can vote during the Annual Assembly to elect the Steering Committee of the Forum and on any other matter raised at the Annual Assembly. Only participants can be elected to the Steering Committee.

Observers do not participate in any decision-making processes.

Both participants and observers can take part in activities of the EaP CSF Working Groups, however observers’ participation in the annual Working Group meeting cannot be funded. Both participants and observers will be added to the list of Forum members and will be receiving regular communications from the EaP CSF.

At the end of the selection process, all applicants will be informed if they were selected to take part in the Annual Assembly and if so in which status.

Participation rights are not transferable from a selected participant organisation to an affiliated organisation or its representative office in another country. Each organization is eligible to apply as an EU or EaP participant/observer, depending on its geographical location.

DEADLINE

The deadline for the applications is 23:59 CET, 20 March 2017.

No late applications will be considered and no exceptions on late applications will be made. The results of the selection will be available on the EaP CSF website in June 2017 and all the applicants will receive the information on selection or non-selection to the provided email addresses.

APPLICATION FORM

To apply for the 9th Annual Assembly, please complete the application form in English or Russian.

If you have any questions concerning the call for applications, please send them to support@eap-csf.eu.

IMPORTANT NOTICE

The European Union (EU) is the main donor of the event and it will be able to fund the travel and hotel accommodation during the Annual Assembly for the selected CSOs only. It will be possible for the EU to cover the travel and accommodation of up to 160 CSO representatives – around 120 from the EaP countries and a maximum of 40 from EU member states.

 

EU-Armenia-baner1EU grants EUR 1 million to promote culture and creative sectors in Shirak region

16819205_1255946574459269_6689233349831205410_oThe Grant Scheme will help building capacity in project management and funds management and directly support the development of the Shirak region. It will contribute to raising the economic competitiveness, creating jobs and reducing tendencies of outward migration.

The EU Ambassador stated: “The Pilot Regional Development Project in Shirak region is a strong tool, fostering culture as a catalyst for sustainable social and economic development. When I say culture, I mean more jobs in the creative and innovative sector. By emphasizing culture in the context of regional development of Armenia we mean building cultural bridges by integrating human capital, innovation, inclusion and infrastructures”.

This is the second call for proposals under the Pilot Regional Development Programme Grant Scheme (PRDP GS). Until now the PRDP GS is the biggest regional development programme in Armenia, both in terms of the available funds and the geographical coverage of the programme. The overall objective of PRDP GS is to support the Government of Armenia in progressing towards a more balanced social and economic development between regions of Armenia via (1) creating  economic opportunities and diversify economies in the ten regions of Armenia (support business climate, productive investments, cooperation among companies, especially SMEs, and related infrastructures), and (2) creating employment opportunities (provide relevant skills and promote sustainable employment, specifically in growth sectors, emerging and innovative sectors, especially among the young adults) in the regions.

Background information

The first call for proposals under the Pilot Regional Development Programme Grant Scheme (PRDP GS) was published by the European Union and the Ministry for Territorial Administration and Development (MTAD) on 14 September 2015. At the end seven PRDP grant contracts were signed with the EU and the Ministry of Territorial Administration. The implementation of the projects started at the beginning of 2017.

Now the second call for proposals is being launched which aims to select 1 or 2 additional regional projects to be financed from the remaining PRPD funds. Under this additional call for proposals, project ideas for Shirak region in culture and creative sectors will be invited. Jobs will be created and SMEs/enterprises registered in Shirak region will benefit from assistance. However, eligible organisations from all the regions can apply, if they find a suitable regional partner from the target region.

The overall objective of PRDP GS is to support the Government of Armenia in progressing towards a more balanced social and economic development among regions of Armenia. The specific objectives of this Call for Proposals are:

(1) to create employment opportunities in Shirak region – provide relevant skills and promote sustainable employment in culture and creative economy sectors, especially among the young adults, and

(2) to create economic opportunities and diversify the economy of Shirak region – support business climate, productive investments, cooperation among companies, especially SMEs, and related infrastructure in the field of culture and creative economy.

The available budget for this second call for proposals is almost 1 million EURO, of which 700.000 EURO is provided by the European Union, 175.000 EURO is added by the Armenian Government, and minimum 10% co-financing has to be provided by the applicants themselves. The overall budget of the project proposals (requested EU grant combined with the national co-financing and the applicant’s own co-financing) must fall between the minimum amount of 486.000 EURO and maximum amount of 1.400.000 EURO.  The selected projects should be implemented within maximum 24 months.

The selection of the granted projects will be organized through a two-step procedure. In the first round only a short document (so called concept note) has to be submitted by the potential applicants. The deadline for the submission of the concept notes is 24th of March 2017. The full project proposals will be elaborated only by the short-listed candidates. The grant contracts with the selected projects will be signed tentatively in September this year.  During the whole application process the applicants will receive tailored trainings and intensive consultations from the Technical Assistance Team working under the EU funded programme “Support to Regional Development in Armenia.  The programme and this grant scheme will not only support development of the regions, will increase their economic competitiveness and reduce migration trends, but it will also foster development of Armenia’s capacity to manage resources in the regions and implement integrated development projects.

logoEU promotes business opportunities in neighbouring regions of Armenia and Georgia

February 14, 2017

5496_lThe EU-funded “Cross-Border Economic Development” project has published a new edition of the Guideline for starting business in Armenia and Georgia”. The publication aims to strengthen economic capacities and business relations in the bordering regions of Tavush, Armenia, and Kvemo Kartli, Georgia, by giving practical information on the business environments and economic regulations in both countries.

The guidelines will provide assistance for potential business partners from both countries. In particular, they explain how to register a new business, outlining the taxation rules and explaining which licenses and permits may be required. The publication is available in Armenian and Georgian, as well as Russian and English, on the website of the Eastern Partnership Territorial Cooperation (EaPTC).

The Cross-Border Economic Development project is aimed at improving living conditions of the bordering communities in the Kvemo Kartli and Tavush regions and strengthening their cross-border potential, primarily in the field of agriculture.

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