FAQ

Questions and answers during the calls of proposals

Please note that in the interest of equal treatment of all the Applicants, the Managing Authority, the Joint Technical Secretariat or the branch offices of Joint Technical Secretariat cannot give prior opinions on the eligibility of the applicant or its Partners, of the project or of the specific activities.

 

 

Nr. crt.

Question

Answer

1

Taking into consideration the opening of the 1st and 2nd Calls for Proposals under the JOP Romania- Moldova 2014–2020, and the following subject, available for both hard and soft projects, as of 2.5 COSTS. ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS / i) Notwithstanding letter (a) above, costs related to studies and documentations related to infrastructure component e.g. Feasibility Study or equivalent, Environmental Impact Assessment, and other technical documentation may be incurred before the project implementation period, starting with the approval date of the Programme, respectively 17 December 2015,

are the costs entailed by the project preparation (namely, filling-in the application form, preparation of the required annexes, etc.) subcontracted to a consultancy firm fail under the provisions of letter (i) above or they will be considered as ineligible?

Regarding the following subject, available for both hard and soft projects:

  • According to point i) from chapter 2.5, only the costs related to studies and documentations related to infrastructure component e.g. Feasibility Study or equivalent, Environmental Impact Assessment, and other technical documentation are considered eligible,

  • Corroborated with letter j) regarding preparatory costs, the costs entailed by the project preparation (namely, filling-in the application form, preparation of the required annexes, etc.) subcontracted to a consultancy firm do not fail under the provisions of letters i) and j) above,

the costs entailed by the project preparation (namely, filling-in the application form, preparation of the required annexes, etc.) subcontracted to a consultancy firm are considered as ineligible.

2

If two forms of territorial-administrative organization from both Romania and Republic of Moldova have a twinning agreement, is it possible for them to apply with a project that is written jointly or separately? What is the contribution to the project and is it possible to obtain co-financing in other projects?

The twinning agreement between two forms of administrative – territorial organizations is not a prerequisite of the Programme or a mandatory requirement comprised in the Guidelines for Applicant and cannot replace in any manner whatsoever the Partnership Statement (Annex C) or the Partnership Agreement (Annex L). Partners shall appoint one organization to act as Applicant who will take full responsibility for the submission of the project proposal and later, provided that the project is awarded a grant, will take the responsibility of implementation of the entire project. For the complete framework of eligibility requirements and the cross border character of the projects, please analyze carefully sections 1.4.4 Cross border character of the projects, 2.2 Applicants and Partners. Eligibility requirements, 2.3 Partnerships. Eligibility requirements, 2.4 Projects and Activities. Eligibility requirements, 2.5 Costs. Eligibility requirements of the Guidelines for applicants..

– Co-financing is at least 10% of the project value. This must be ensured, at the project level, by all partners. All project Partners will include costs for their share of activities in the individual budgets (see the mandatory CBC criteria, joint staffing and joint financing), comprising both a share of grant and a share of co-financing. However, the project Partners are free to decide over the distribution of the co-financing among them.

For the Romanian beneficiaries, the Government Ordinance no. 29/2015 regarding the allocation of external grants and national public contribution, for the “European Territorial Cooperation” Objective, with subsequent amendments shall be applied.

– As a project leader, an institution can only participate in one project per priority.

– As a partner, there is no limitation.

– The maximum number of partners is 4, the minimum number of partners is 2.

3

Can a Non-Governmental Organization, registered in the Republic of Moldova, act as a partner under the priority 3.1 “Development of cross border transport infrastructure and ICT tools”?

According to the Annex H.1_Indicative list of potential Applicants and Partners (per Priority) to the Guidelines for grant applicants, the potential applicants and partners for the Priority 3.1 – Development of cross border transport infrastructure and ICT tools are:

For Hard projects

National /regional/local public administration and other public institutions

For soft projects

National/ regional/ local public administration and other public institutions;

State owned companies administrating transport and communication infrastructure

For the complete framework of the eligibility requirements, please consult the sections 2.2 Applicants and Partners. Eligibility requirements, 2.3 Partnerships. Eligibility requirements, 2.4 Projects and Activities. Eligibility requirements, 2.5 Costs. Eligibility requirements of the guidelines for applicants

In the interest of equal treatment of all the Applicants, the Managing Authority, the Joint Technical Secretariat or the branch office of Joint Technical Secretariat cannot express prior opinions on the eligibility of the applicant or its Partners, of the project or of the specific activities.

4

According to the statements from the Annex H.1 and those from the Guidelines for grant applicants for both SOFT and HARD projects, mainly point 2.2.1 “Eligibility requirements for the Applicant and partners” and the next point – 2.2.2 “Indicative eligible organizations”, can a NGO participate as a Partner under Priority 3.1?

The list comprised in the Annex H.1 is an indicative one and was set taking into consideration the requirements and specific activities to be foreseen under certain priorities.

Therefore, the Managing Authority, the Joint Technical Secretariat or the branch offices of Joint Technical Secretariat cannot give prior opinions on the eligibility of the applicant or its Partners (beyond the points listed in chapter 2.2.1), of the project or of the specific activities, this being a matter concerning the particular field of activity and statute of the institution, which can or not be entitled to develop the specific project activities that fall under each priority and may or may not have the capacity to reach the proposed Programme indicators (per priority). The legal capabilities of the Applicant and partners to act in the field of the project proposal will be assessed during Step 2 (technical and financial evaluation) where each partner have to demonstrate that it has the necessary competencies required in the field of project (please also check the Annex J3 – Evaluation Grid).

5

Can a project initiated and managed by private NGOs aiming to open a center aimed to support disabled be assigned to „Equipping specific public medical service infrastructure (outpatient, emergency room facilities, medical centers, integrated social intervention, etc.)” mentioned as indicative eligible activity under Priority 4.1 – Support to the development of health services and access to health?

For the complete framework of the eligibility requirements, please consult the sections 2.2 Applicants and Partners. Eligibility requirements, 2.3 Partnerships. Eligibility requirements, 2.4 Projects and Activities. Eligibility requirements, 2.5 Costs. Eligibility requirements of the guidelines for applicants.

Moreover, please consult also the Annex H.1, where you can find the Indicative list of eligible entities.

Please also take into consideration the provisions of section 1.4.4. Cross border cooperation character of the project

The Managing Authority, the Joint Technical Secretariat or the branch offices of Joint Technical Secretariat cannot express prior opinions on the eligibility of the applicant or its Partners (beyond the points listed in chapter 2.2.1), of the project or of the specific activities this being a matter concerning the particular field of activity and statute of the institution, which can or not be entitled to develop the specific project activities that fall under each priority and may or may not have the capacity to reach the proposed Programme indicators (per priority). The legal capabilities of the Applicant and partners to act in the field of the project proposal will be assessed during Step 2 (technical and financial evaluation) where each partner have to demonstrate that it has the necessary competencies required in the field of project (please also check the Annex J3-Evaluation Grid).Answers to questions only offer clarification to the guidelines for applicants and they may, on no account, give an appreciation on the eligibility or quality of a proposal or activities foreseen. Individual assessments have to be made by every potential applicant and its partners in each particular case prior to submission of the application.

6

In a project with an infrastructure component in the present call for proposals for hard projects:

– the minimum PRAG of 1 million euro relates to the total value in annex A. 1 Indicative infrastructure budget breakdown or the costs of the budget line 3. Infrastructure within the project budget (part D, Application Form)?

– if the minimum PRAG 1 million euro for the infrastructure component relates to the total value of the investments in the infrastructure provided on both sides of the border (infrastructure value in Romania and infrastructure value in the Republic of Moldova) or does the 1 million euro threshold have to be reached by investment in infrastructure provided only in one of the two countries?

– the information and communication activities and the capacity building activities must be carried out in parallel with those relating to the execution of the infrastructure or they may take place and subsequently the completion and delivery of the infrastructure, in compliance with the maximum period of 24 months for implementation?

In drafting and submitting the project as part of the HARD project call for proposals, please consider the following information provided in the Guidelines for the grant applicants:

– The HARD project has to include an infrastructure component that has a minimum value of 1 million euro. According to chapter 1.4.3 Type of projects, there is no provision according to which each partner’s investment has to satisfy the mentioned condition.

– According to the Programme, “Infrastructure means permanent works and/or equipment which contribute to at least one programme (common) output that is specifically addressed by the project. Infrastructure must be entirely described in the Feasibility Studies”;

– In this context, the investments executed by the Partners from the project must be permanent and have to specifically address an output of the Programme (see Programme indicators per priority); the cumulated costs of those investments must be at least 1 million euro;

– The infrastructure component must be described in the technical documentation – the content is provided in Annex F- Feasibility Study (template showing the main content).

In the ideal case, the applicant can provide an integrated Feasibility Study for the infrastructure component (as a whole) at the project level, but the Programme accepts feasibility studies for the individual investments of the Partners in the project;

– Thus, the Feasibility Study/Studies should contain at least the content provided in Annex F, and must describe completely the permanent works and/or the equipment to be installed, which form the infrastructure component with a minimum value of at least 1 million euro;

– The assessment of the infrastructure component and, implicitly, the eligibility verification of the project are going to be performed in the stage of technical and financial evaluation and in the phase of evaluation of additional documents.

In line with the above mentioned, in the evaluation grid (Annex J.3) for step 2 – Technical and financial evaluation, there is a section dedicated to the infrastructure component (3.3 The infrastructure component), which, at point 3.3 (e) specifies that “the assessment will be made with reference to the budget sheet indicative infrastructure budget breakdown “, and in the evaluation grid for step 3 (Annex J.4) at section 2 Content assessment states at one of the criteria “the estimated costs of the infrastructure given by the Feasibility Study matches the overall cost in the budget sheet Indicative infrastructure budget breakdown of the Application Form”;

– In the column “Corresponding budget line” of Indicative budget for breakdown for infrastructure clear references are made to the budget lines related/associated to the infrastructure component. In line with the Programme rules, the cost of the infrastructure component ( section 2.5.1 Eligible direct costs “costs for provision of the infrastructure”, Guidelines for grant applicants) must be indicated at chapter 3 Infrastructure budget, line 3.2 Infrastructure execution (the value must be at least 1 million euro);

– There is a clear distinction between the implementation period of the project (in the Guidelines chapter 2.4.3 Project duration) and the duration of the infrastructure component execution. The maximum duration of implementing a project is 24 months, period during which all project activities, including the capacity building component and information and communication must be completed.

– The execution time-line of the infrastructure component must be included in the implementing period of the project and it cannot be longer than the entire Project duration and it must be compliant with the duration set by Feasibility Study at chapter 5.2 Implementation strategy;

– During the evaluation process of additional documents (evaluation grid step 3 section 2 Content assessment) it will be analysed if the duration of the infrastructure component execution from the Indicative time plan corresponds with the period stipulated in the Feasibility Study (section Implementation strategy).

7

Having in regard the Guidelines for grant applicants – HARD projects and according to Priority 4.1 – Support to the development of health services and access to health,

  • by equipping two or more hospitals with specialty equipment worth at least 1 million euro, without the building component, the proposed project can be understood as a hard project in order to be eligible?

  • is the infrastructure component referring only to the building component, (Feasibility study for technical project, construction authorization, construction works) or can it also be understood in the sense of infrastructure medical acquisition of specialized equipment?

  • considering that in the types of activities related to the infrastructure component it is mentioned as eligible- “Developing labs and mobile labs for the prevention/detection/monitoring of diseases, injuries, incidents and border epidemics, the acquisition of a Mobile laboratory in the form of an automobile equipped with all the functions of analysis, diagnosis, can be framed in the infrastructure component defined according to the guide mentioned above?

Given the all mentioned above, can a project involving equipment be considered a HARD project or will it be framed to SOFT projects, with a maximum budget of 200,000 euro/per project?

  • In line with Programme rules and those of the Applicants Guidelines for HARD projects, “Infrastructure means permanent works and/or equipment which contribute to at least one programme (common) output that is specifically addressed by the project. Infrastructure must be entirely described in the Feasibility Studies”.

  • A project that only includes the acquisition of equipment and endowments (specialised equipment) cannot be considered infrastructure. Please also refer to the definition of specialized equipment provided by the Guidelines for grant applicants, at page 54: «Devices, apparatus, components, machinery etc. having a specific function other than the equipment falling under the definition of the “infrastructure component”, but appropriate to the thematic field (priority) addressed by the project. »

The projects submitted under the call for ”hard” projects can also contain acquisition of specialized equipment which is not part of the infrastructure. This will be included in budget at the line 4.2.2 Specialized equipment and endowments, but will not count for calculating the minimum value of infrastructure (1 million).

– The infrastructure component must be described in the technical documentation – the content is provided in Annex F- Feasibility Study. The applicant can provide an integrated Feasibility Study for the infrastructure component (as a whole) at the project level, but the Programme accepts feasibility studies for the individual investments of the Partners in the project;

– The assessment of the infrastructure component and, implicitly, the eligibility verification of the project are going to be performed in the stage of technical and financial evaluation and as well, in the phase of evaluation of additional documents.

In line with the above, in the evaluation grid (Annex J.3) for step 2 – Technical and financial evaluation, there is a section dedicated to the infrastructure component (3.3 The infrastructure component), which, at point 3.3 (e) specifies that “the assessment will be made with reference to the budget sheet indicative infrastructure budget breakdown “, and in the evaluation grid for step 3 (Annex J.4) at section 2 Content assessment states at one of the criteria “the estimated costs of the infrastructure given by the Feasibility Study matches the overall cost in the budget sheet Indicative infrastructure budget breakdown of the Application Form”;

As regards the acquisition of individual equipment which is not part of an infrastructure, it can be done without restrictions under the soft projects. Please note that a project is not automatically transferred by the evaluation committee from a call to another (e.g. from ”hard” to ”soft”). In order to be considered for evaluation, the application must be submitted under each call, according to the Guidelines for applicants.

8

For the hard projects

1.     If one project partner will subcontract the position of a staff member (e.g. project manager or financial manager) is it still necessary to submit a job description for it? Or anything else instead?

2.     Due to the fact that procurement and execution of works can take significant amount of time, does the maximum project duration for hard project has to be at least 30 months?

3.   The Programme allows procurements to be done and contracts signed before the Grant contract is signed. In this case what type of procurement procedure has to be used by public authorities from Moldova: PRAG or national legislation? The Programme states that PRAG procedures shall be used, but there is a potential problem – local authorities in Moldova are allowed to use the procurement procedures of external donors instead of national procurement legislation only if a project is selected for funding and a grant contract is signed. There will be no official document (grant contract, notification for provisional project selection etc.) when such procurements mentioned above will be done. Could you please clarify this issue with the National Authority in Moldova?

4.   At section 2.6.7 Additional documents to be submitted in Stage II, point e., paragraph 2, there is a requirement to present ”documents showing registration in the relevant public registers…”. Does this statement mean that cadaster documents should be presented for the infrastructure to be rehabilitated?

5. Do public authorities have to submit the same supporting documents as other potential beneficiaries (section 2.6.3)? (Usually the public authorities are not required to submit Statutes (or equivalent) and financial report)

For the soft projects

  1. Taking into consideration Priority 4.1 – “Support to the development of health services and access to health”, are NGOs eligible to do small scale investments aiming to enhance the access to health such as integrated social intervention, prevention etc.? (The presented indicative eligible activities focus more on public institutions although NGOs are eligible as well)

2.       Is it eligible for a project beneficiary to transfer equipment procured in the framework of a project to local public authorities which are the target group in a project but not project partners?

For both HARD and SOFT projects:

Could it be possible to indicate the maximum number of characters for the sections of the online application form if there will be such limitations?

For the hard projects

1.  Yes, it is mandatory to submit the job description for any kind of position within the project staff. Staff means any person assigned to the project and for whom, on the basis of a labor contract, the organization pays a gross salary that includes social security charges and other remunerated-related costs (section 2.5.1 Eligible direct costs). The project team should include, as a minimum, a project manager and a financial manager (section 2.3.2 Eligibility requirements for the project partnership) assigned by each project partner and for whom job descriptions are necessary.

Please note that project partners have to demonstrate the necessary competencies required in the field of the project. Moreover, there are better scored those projects that do not subcontract the management of their share of the project (please check also the Annex J3 Evaluation Grid. Technical and financial evaluation). In case of a person not working for the respective partner, but subcontracted to perform various project activities following procurement procedure, he/she is not considered as “staff” and does not need a job description. It will be included in budget within the chapter 5 Services.

2. As it is mentioned in the Applicant’s Guideline, chapter 2.4.3, page 22, the maximum duration for the implementation of the project is set at 24 months. No changes of this provision are envisaged.     

3.  This issue will be clarified and potential beneficiaries will be informed in due time.

  1. In line with the Programme rules and according to section 2.6.7 Additional documents to be submitted in Stage II, point e., paragraph 2, the evidence of ownership by the Applicant and/or Partners and access to the land, is demonstrated by documents showing registration in the relevant public registers of each location (land/building/space) where the infrastructure is foreseen to be executed AND/OR equipment over EURO 60,000 is to be installed/ used.

5.  All Partners participating in the projects have to submit relevant documents, as they are listed in section 2.6.3 of the Guidelines.

The exception can be made for international organizations and ETC groupings.

For the soft projects

  1. NGOs are eligible under the priority 4.1. However, the project partners have to demonstrate the necessary competencies required in the field of the project. Please check also the Annex J3 Evaluation Grid. Technical and financial evaluation

2.   All equipment purchased within a project has to be owned and maintained by the partner in charge of the expenditure. This situation is applicable during the implementation period and also during the sustainability period. In case the target group is represented by a legal entity or by individuals that are not partners within the project, a bailment agreement has to be established between the partner in charge and the representative of the target group. This means the equipment is still under the ownership of the responsible partner, but the equipment can be used by the target group if the project proposal referred to such an activity (e.g., if a project proposal includes equipment for agriculture – a tractor to be used by a target group, in certain conditions specified in the project – the equipment remains the property of the project beneficiary/partner, but it will be possible to be used by the targeted entities which were not partners in the project; in a waste management project waste bins are bought by the city hall, bins that – when the project is completed – are offered for free usage to each household in the city).

For both HARD and SOFT projects:

The pdf. application form provides this information where the case may be.

9

Is it possible for an institution or organization to open multiple EMS accounts to be able to submit projects on different priorities?

According to Annex O – REGISTRATION-FORM from the Applicants Guideline, it is possible for an institution or organization to open multiple EMS accounts, ONLY if in the Annex O – REGISTRATION-FORM is mentioned the person who will open an account on the JOP RO-MD 2014-2020 electronic management system, for uploading documents for the call of proposals.

Please take note that an organization may submit, as Applicant, only one project per Priority under the present Calls for proposals.

10

Is it possible to partially finance an investment (infrastructure) under two different projects (and/or two different programmes)?

In order to receive financing under the present call for proposals, the project must ensure the execution of the entire infrastructure objective comprised in the general investment estimate in order to ensure the delivery of the output and result indicators as presented in Annex H.2 – Programme indicators per priority. As such, project contribution to the Programme (common) outputs and results must be clear, effective, quantifiable and verifiable.
In this respect, the Programme shall not finance a project that includes only a part of an investment objective presented as an overall in a feasibility study and a subsequent general investment estimate.
Therefore, irrespective of possible alternative sources of funding necessary to ensure the partners’ financial contribution for execution of the entire infrastructure objective as described by the feasibility study (other EU/national/international programmes, etc.), these must be included in the project budget and the total partners’ financial contribution as defined by the Guidelines for Applicants and annexes.
Also, please be aware that Programme shall not finance projects whose activities have already been financed (totally or partially) by other programmes/ financial instruments.

 

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