Project applications for the contribution to EU enlargement
Applications for projects are carried out exclusively in the partner countries. Summary of the process of selecting project proposals and the awarding of a contract for supplies and services.
Project proposal selection and contract awarding procedures
Swiss cooperation with Eastern Europe: Priority countries
Switzerland's traditional cooperation with Eastern Europe and the CIS (transition assistance) focuses on the Western Balkans (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Kosovo), and on countries in the former Soviet Union (Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Moldova, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Armenia and Ukraine).
Projects under Switzerland’s enlargement contribution are also
implemented in the expanded European Union. The new partner countries are those states which joined the EU on 1 May 2004, i.e. Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta,
Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia, as well as Romania and Bulgaria which acceded in 2007.
Though progress has been made on growth, the average income in the new member states is far below that of the EU.
The situation in the regions – an overview
Central European and Baltic countries,, which can look back on a democratic past and share borders with the progressive market economies of Western European, have successfully forged ahead with reforms. Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia acceded to the European Union in 2004, followed three years later by Bulgaria and Romania.
Conditions in other regions are far less favourable. The multi-ethnic countries in the West Balkans and theSouth Caucasus have been unable to withstand the rising tide of nationalism. The result was violent conflicts, streams of refugees and humanitarian crises on a scale that Europe had not witnessed since the end of the Second World War.
The transition was also a delicate process inCentral Asia, where borders were drawn up during the Stalin era and the region’s peripheral location impeded any autonomous economic development. As in other former Soviet republics, the abrupt end of transfer payments from Moscow and the breakdown of the Soviet supply and distribution system fuelled a serious crisis.
Although the region recovered in the period from 2000 up to the financial crisis in 2008, in 12 out of 27 Eastern states, the per capital income remains below the 1990 level.
Detailed information on the regions:
|Commonwealth of Independent States CIS
Since the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the members of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) have been rebuilding themselves politically, economically and socially. SDC is supporting the efforts of several countries in this region to introduce a social market economy and to ensure long-term political and economic stability.
The declared goal of all governments and peoples in the Western Balkans is to complete the transition process with full integration into Euro-Atlantic structures. Although all the countries can point to some degree of success with reforms, system changeover has not yet been fully completed. Political institutions are still weak and failure-prone, the economies still have a great deal of ground to make up, and unemployment is an urgent problem.
|New EU member states
This expansion has, however, aggravated the imbalance between rich and poor in the European Union. Through its Cohesion and Regional Development Funds, the EU is striving to reduce these imbalances, and Switzerland is contributing to efforts to narrow this gap with its own programme.