The EU's development policy abroad is channeled through several European Commission departments, above all DEVCO (EuropeAid) — DG International Cooperation and Development — with goal sustainable development and end to poverty, and DG NEAR — DG Neighbourhood & Enlargement Negotiations — with mission to take forward the EU's neighbourhood and enlargement policies.
Development policy is delivered through: EDF – European Development Fund – providing development aid to ACP countries, overseas countries and territories; DCI – Development Cooperation Instrument – covering some thematic and geographical programmes; ENPI – European Neighbourhood Policy Instrument – covering southern and eastern EU neighbours; and IPA – Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance – covering EU (potential) candidate countries.
The EU development aid budget is decided (and financed directly) by EU Member States in the European Council.
EuropeAid is responsible for the effective implementation and delivery of aid.
The EU is the world's leading donor, providing over 50% of all global development aid.
A National Indicative Programme (NIP) is prepared for each country, including objectives, expected results and conditions to be met in priority areas and sectors of cooperation. Correspondingly, an Action Fiche is prepared for each specific project.
NIPs/project fiches and progress reports from past and current projects provide the basis for project Terms of Reference on call for tenders.
Project procurement procedure in the framework of EDF can begin once a Financing Agreement is signed between the EU and the beneficiary country.
Actions and timeframes involved in applying for a project contract are governed by type of procedure depending on nature of contract and threshold.
In accordance with the 2014 PRAG, International restricted tender procedure automatically applies for service contracts worth EUR 300 000 or more, as follows.
A Prior Information Notice (PIN) is published on the EU website, including general information regarding the project. The Contracting Authority prepares a Tender dossier to ensure that contract and procurement procedure are carried out correctly.
At this time, interested bidders (e.g. HD) start research on the project context.
When the tender dossier is ready, a Procurement Service Contract Notice (SCN) is published. This provides further details on the scope of the contract, the criteria for interested bidders, and the deadline for submission of applications.
At this time, interested bidders/consortia start preparing an Expression of Interest.
Interested bidders select complementary partners, perform compliance checks, prepare and submit the EoI.
The Expression of Interest (EoI) consists of proof that the lead organisation, a company or organisation, and its partners meet the project selection criteria: number of projects implemented in a specific sector, project references, financial capacity, staff capacities and capabilities, etc.
After the evaluation of the selection criteria, a shortlist of selected candidates is drawn up and the Service Contract Shortlist Notice is issued.
A maximum of 8 tenderers may be shortlisted. None are shortlisted if none meet the criteria.
Shortlisted candidates are invited to bid.
They are sent the tender dossier which includes terms of reference (what to include in the tender and the award criteria), special and general conditions, and required administrative and compliance details and forms.
Each shortlisted tenderer prepares and submits to the Contracting Authority a tender composed of a technical proposal (incl. project rationale, strategy, logical framework, presentation of experts, etc.) and a financial offer (incl. budget and workdays breakdown). Offers are valid for 90 days.
An Evaluation Committee nominated for impartiality and expertise is appointed by the Contracting Authority to open and evaluate all tenders. The Committee will recommend to award the contract to a successful tenderer or to cancel the procedure if no tender meets the criteria.
The Contracting Authority makes a decision based on the Evaluation Committee recommendation and issues an Award notice.
Upon submission of further documentation with respect to the eligibility of the winning tenderer, the service contract is signed.
Inception runs parallel to early project implementation work. This allows to refine and adjust the approach to ensure maximally effective implementation strategy and sustainability of results.
The TA team is deployed and the permanent structure for project management is enacted.
Some technical activities may commence.
TA delivery. During the Implementation Phase, technical activities — some of which already started during the Inception Phase — are implemented in line with the overall work plan, specific task/activity-based work plans, and the Terms of Reference.
This phase makes the bulk of the project lifecycle.
Technical Activities. Work may include e.g. baseline studies, stakeholder monitoring, capacity building, various trainings, study tours, legal gaps assessments, surveys, HR development, project monitoring, risk management, drafting of regulations, quality control, financial resource mobilisation, implementation of visibility/awareness strategy, and so on.
This is the period of project end and formal handover of the project and all its deliverables. This includes steps to ensure that project achievements are summed up comprehensively for the beneficiary, the Contracting Authority and a wider audience, and to critically assess the 'lessons learnt' from project implementation.
The impact of a successful project lasts beyond project closure. Lessons learnt inform further development work. HD continues to monitor developments in the country and sector for currency of expertise; and we apply our project experience toward new solutions and successful projects in the sector or region.
Here we provide an understanding of how leading donors operate and the typical cycle for the type of projects we deliver for our clients. We have chosen the European Union as a good example for this since their very approach is followed by and comparable with the approach of other bilateral and multilateral donors.