The projects should always have a cross-border character, which shall be understood in terms of respecting at least two of the following conditions, as described below: joint development, joint staffing, joint implementation and/or joint financing.
q Joint development – means that the project must be designed in common by partners, meaning that applications must clearly integrate the ideas, priorities and actions of all stakeholders. The Applicant is the coordinator of this process but should include other partners from the beginning of the development process;
q Joint implementation – means that the activities to be carried out for the implementation of the joint Action are distributed in a balanced way among the partners. There is a clear content-based link between the activities implemented in each country/region and regular contacts are ensured between all the sides. The Applicant (Beneficiary) is responsible for ensuring that the activities are properly coordinated, that schedules are kept and that the right quality levels are achieved;
q Joint staffing – means that the project should not duplicate functions. Therefore, regardless of where the person is registered and located, there should be one joint project manager, one joint financial manager etc. (more staff may be required for larger projects). These staff will be responsible for project activities on all sides of the borders. The Beneficiary (Lead Partner) is generally the employer of core project staff;
q Joint financing – means that there will be only one ENPI Grant Contract per joint Action and there must be one common budget and common reporting. The common budget shall be divided between the partners according to a balanced distribution of activities to be carried out by them. There is also only one project bank account – held by the Applicant (Beneficiary) – and payments (from ENPI) are made from the programme to this account. The Applicant (Beneficiary) is responsible for the administration and distribution of these funds to the partners and for reporting on their use. Exception will be made in case of joint Actions involving IPA partner(s) where the IPA Lead Beneficiary will sign the IPA Grant Contract with CFCU in Turkey for the IPA funds and it will have a separate bank account for IPA funds. Co-financing should be provided by each partner illustrating the commitment by each partner to the joint Action.
The first meeting of the Joint Programming Committee – body responsible for the preparation of the Interreg NEXT (Neighbourhood External) Black Sea Basin Programme 2021-2027 – was held on the 29th of January 2020 in Brussels, Belgium. The eligible participating countries of the new Programme involves ten states from the Black Sea Basin: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Georgia, Greece, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Turkey and Ukraine.
The new generation of projects to be funded under the Joint Operational Programme Black Sea Basin 2014-2020 has been approved by the Joint Monitoring Committee during the meeting held in Odessa, Ukraine, on 17th of September 2019.