On 16 December 2016, the European Investment Bank (EIB), in partnership with the Ministry of Regional Development, Construction and Housing, and Communal Services of Ukraine (MRD), has signed the Technical Assistance Cooperation Agreement to facilitate the optimal use of the EUR 200 M Early Recovery Loan, so that it delivers the expected results on time and affectively improves infrastructure and quality of living for the population affected by the conflict in the Eastern Ukraine.
Under this Technical Assistance Cooperation Agreement between EIB and MRD, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) will help monitoring the implementation of the EIB-funded Early Recovery Project to help better plan, implement and monitor recovery and peace-building related projects more effectively, including by developing capacities for contracting, procurement, social mitigation and local governance.
To this end, UNDP will establish a regional Technical Coordination Unit in Kramatorsk and four decentralized UNDP Technical Assistance Units in Severodonetsk (Luhansk Oblast) and in the oblast centres of Kharkiv, Dnipro and Zaporizhia, whose social services and infrastructure are under heavy pressure from the massive influx of internally displaced people and from other disruptions caused by the conflict.
The first batch of the Early Recovery projects within this agreement was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers and includes 69 projects in five eastern regions of Ukraine with a total budget of EUR 21.9M. Almost half of this sum will go for rehabilitation of medical facilities, another 35% will be allocated to the projects in educational institutions, 15% will go for housing projects, and 3% for other social facilities. Most of the projects are located in Kharkiv region (21 projects, EUR 8.5M), Donetsk region (17 projects, EUR 7.1M) and Luhansk region (26 projects, EUR 3.1M). The procurement procedure and first tender announcement was launched in late November for Kharkiv region.
The second call for proposals was announced in July 2016, and applications for almost 1,000 projects have been received in the past three months. To date some 830 projects, with a total value of approximately EUR 160M, are considered to be eligible for participation in the programme. The screening and final selection is expected to be finalized by February 2017, leading to the start of procurement shortly afterwards. It is expected that new project proposals will arrive in 2017 to fully disburse the EUR 200M loan.
UNDP works in nearly 170 countries and territories, helping to achieve the eradication of poverty, and the reduction of inequalities and exclusion. We help countries to develop policies, leadership skills, partnering abilities, institutional capabilities and build resilience in order to sustain development results.
EIB is the European Union’s long-term lending institution and is owned by its 28 Member States. While the large majority of projects financed by the EIB are in the EU, the EIB has been active outside the EU for more than 50 years and is firmly committed to supporting EU development policies in non-EU countries.
The EIB group last year provided nearly EUR 8 billion in financing for projects and initiatives outside the European Union. It maintains a presence in some 160 countries, including low-income countries and those facing acute political and economic crises. The EIB’s non-EU operations support the objectives of the EU Agenda for Change and the Sustainable Development Goals.
The technical assistance operation for the UNDP monitoring function in respect to the Early Recovery Project is financed under the Eastern Partnership Technical Assistance Trust Fund (EPTATF). It is a multi-donor, multi-sector trust fund established by EIB in 2010 in response to the need for specific technical assistance support to its lending activities in the Eastern Partnership Countries. The EPTATF is a flexible mechanism to fill critical gaps for the development and implementation of investment projects by providing financing for pre-feasibility and feasibility studies, institutional and legal appraisals, Environmental and Social Impact Assessments for potential investments, of project management support and capacity building for the promoters during the implementation of investment projects, as well as of other upstream studies and horizontal activities. It focuses on four priority sectors: energy, environment, transport and telecommunications with climate change and urban development as cross-cutting issues. To date, eight EU Member States – Austria, France, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Sweden, and the United Kingdom – have contributed 26.8 M EUR to EPTATF.
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