Updated Practical Guidelines are now in force

Latvia-Russia Cross-Border Cooperation Programme 2014-2020 Practical Guidelines for Project Implementation (hereinafter – Practical Guidelines) have been updated and approved by the Joint Monitoring Committee on 10 June, 2020.

Here is a list of sections of Guidelines where the main changes (despite minor technical corrections) have been made, and their short description:

“1. INTRODUCTION”

  • Addition of a paragraph concerning prevalence of provisions of Practical Guidelines over Guidelines for Grant Applicants and Guidelines for Direct Award Project Applicants. Though it has been ensured that the same rules of project implementation are included in all Programme documents, a few contradictions have been noted. For example, in the “Guidelines for Grant Applicants” 24 months are stated as maximum time for project Taking into consideration current situation with CoViD-19 and other reasons, there are already projects which have requested prolongation of project implementation beyond 24-month time limit. Such requests are eligible in accordance with Article 18 (3) of Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 897/2014.

“4. CHANGES IN THE PROJECT”

  • Minor update of definition of substantial changes in project activities to ensure clear distinction between cases of minor and major changes in project activities.
  • Addition of information about submission of correct template for request for changes and in case of changes in technical documentation – submission of the documentation to the Joint Technical Secretariat to encourage same understanding and approach concerning project changes for project beneficiaries

“5. REPORTING, MONITORING AND CONTROL”

  • Provision that costs connected with organisation of event and with participation in event may be reported in the reporting period when the event took place, was deleted from reporting requirements to ensure a project-friendlier approach. It was noted that often a lot of costs have to be covered in advance and may not fall in the same reporting period as the event.
  • Change of time-limit within which project public officers/auditors have to carry out expenditure verification. Experience with the first reporting period and submission of consolidated reports has indicated that the currently allocated time is not sufficient, deadlines for control of expenditure have been prolonged.
  • More detailed information about the process of preparation of interim/final report as well as submission of documents of consolidated reports to Managing Authority and Joint Technical Secretariat.
  • Deadlines for submission and approval of interim/final reports are prolonged.

“6. FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT OF THE PROJECT”

  • Russian beneficiaries are recommended to calculate the currency exchange losses incurred in each reporting period in addition to expenditure verification performed by the auditor. Suggested approach is described.

“8. IRREGULARITIES AND RECOVERY”

  • In the currently approved version of Practical Guidelines underachievement of activities was stated as a reason for possible irregularity, however, other information concerning such cases was not provided. More detailed information is included in Practical Guidelines to ensure that project beneficiaries are well informed about which situations irregularities may refer to and what may be the consequences of underachievement of set output and result indicators.

All the above-mentioned changes have been incorporated in the Practical Guidelines and highlighted in yellow.

Please feel free to contact your project manager if you have any questions!

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