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When distributing EU Structural and Cohesion funding to Operational Programmes running between 2007 and 2013, the Commission can make three types of payments:
- Pre-financing payments. Such payments are made between 2007 and 2009 once the Commission has approved an Operational Programme. The proportion of funding available for pre-financing varies according to which fund the payments come from (between 5 and 7 per cent for the European Regional Development Fund and European Social Fund; up to 10.5 per cent for the Cohesion Fund).
- Interim payments. Before the first interim payment is made, a Member State must furnish the Commission with details of how it intends to manage, certify and audit the Operational Programme in question. Subsequently, applications for payments must be collected together three times a year and sent to the Commission, which will then release further payments.
- Final payment. To receive a final payment from the Commission, the Member States must provide a final statement of expenditure and a final implementation report for each Operational Programme. The Commission must receive these by 31 March 2017.