Among the cross-border cooperation programmes implemented in Türkiye by our Directorate as the National Authority, our country is expected to participate for the first time in the Interreg NEXT Mediterranean Sea Basin Programme during the 2021-2027 budget period of the EU. Within the context of the preparations before the implementation period of this programme, the 7th meeting of the Task Force comprising representatives from 15 participating countries has been conducted on 29-30 March in Rome, Italy. As the first physical Task Force meeting following the Covid-19 pandemic, the activity has also been open to online participants.
Besides the EU member states in the Mediterranean Sea Basin and other Mediterranean countries that are part of the EU Neighborhood policy, Türkiye is the only candidate country participating in the programme. Provinces of Edirne, Kırklareli, Tekirdağ, Balıkesir, Çanakkale, İzmir, Aydın, Denizli, Muğla, Manisa, Afyonkarahisar, Kütahya, Uşak, Antalya, Isparta, Burdur, Adana, Mersin, Hatay, Kahramanmaraş ve Osmaniye will be included in the programme area. Within the context of this programme, projects prepared by local and regional administrations, various public authorities, NGO’s, chambers of commerce and trade associations, educational institutions, as well as SME’s with their counterparts from other participating countries will be funded.
During the meeting, the final draft of the programme document has been discussed and adopted in principle by the participating countries before submission to the European Commission for final revision. Among other topics negotiated during the meeting, allocation of the programme budget to the previously determined priority areas, types of interventions under each priority axes, indicators to be used for measuring the success of the projects and complementarity with other cross-border programmes have also been decided. Implementation of the programme is expected to commence following the adoption of the programme document by the European Commission and signature of the financing agreement by all parties. In this regard, it is planned to announce the first call for proposals, where the project offers will be evaluated, within the first quarter of 2023.