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Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA)
The Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA) has been established by the EU to support candidate countries and potential candidate countries.
The IPA covers the period 2007-13 and replaces a number of older EU pre-accession programmes like PHARE, ISPA, SAPARD and CARDS as well as a financial instrument for Turkey.
More than €11 billion is available through the IPA, which will be spent via the following five strands:
- transition assistance and institution building
- cross-border cooperation
- regional development
- human resources development
- rural development
Candidate countries (Croatia, Turkey, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) can apply for assistance under all five strands; potential candidates (Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia, Kosovo under UN Security Council Resolution 1244) are limited to the first two.
IPA support is provided through multi-annual programmes. This arrangement will prepare candidate countries to manage the European funds they will receive after obtaining EU membership, including those that fall under Regional Policy for 2007-13.