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How to strengthen the partnership principle in European Funds?

How to strengthen the partnership principle in European Funds? © Istockphoto | File #: 2968304 | 03-01-07 © Ashwin Kharidehal Abhirama

The Commission has presented an outline of the principles that should guide EU countries when they organise the participation of the relevant partners in the different stages of the implementation of the EU Common Strategic Framework funds.

It prepares the ground for a European Code of Conduct on partnership (ECCP), which will lay down minimum requirements for national authorities to ensure a high quality involvement of partners.

Why a 'European Code of Conduct on Partnership'?

Partnership can bring many benefits and added value, ranging from enhanced commitment and broader expertise to greater transparency and improved efficiency of the policy making process. However, experience shows that there are wide differences across the EU on application of the partnership principle, depending on national institutional set-ups and political cultures. The effectiveness of the partnership principle also depends on the technical ability of the partners to contribute substantively to the process, raising the question of capacity-building.

The paper is intended to facilitate the debate on the future content of the European Code of Conduct. The Commission welcomes reactions and proposals from organisations as well as individuals. Comments can be sent to