Swiss-Polish Cooperation Programme

Swiss–Polish Cooperation Programme

The Swiss–Polish Cooperation Programme, also known as the Swiss Fund, was launched under a bilateral Framework Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Poland and the Swiss Federal Council, signed on 20 December 2007 in Berne. The SPCP constitutes a non–repayable foreign assistance granted by Switzerland. The beneficiaries of this assistance include European Union Member States which joined the EU on 1 May 2004 (Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia and Hungary).

Under the Swiss Programme, a 5–year period of commitment is envisaged, and a 10–year period of disbursement, which started on 14 June 2007, i.e. on the day the financial aid was granted to Poland by the Swiss Parliament.

The aim of the Swiss Fund is to reduce economic and social disparities between the more developed and less developed UE countries as well as the disparities that exist in the beneficiary counties, e.g. between municipalities and least structurally developed regions.

The Ministry of the Interior acts as a Coordinating Institution for the implementation of projects in the area of: Security, Stability and Support for Reforms, dedicated to the protection of the European Union eastern borders .

Financial assistance may be granted for activities which aim at:

  1. Increasing the capacity and efficiency of border crossing points (especially by providing the customs officers with specialised equipment, as well as modernisation of border crossing points on the Polish – Ukrainian state border, and crisis response);
  2. Supporting customs units assigned to fighting crime;
  3. Modernising border crossing points in terms of computerisation, equipment and management system, including the development and implementation of a digital radio communication system.

Beneficiaries of the fund include the following entities:

  • General Headquarters of Police
  • Border Guard Headquarters,
  • Office for Foreigners,
  • The Lubelski Voivode,
  • The Podlaski Voivode,
  • The Podkarpacki Voivode,
  • The Warmińsko–Mazurski Voivode,
  • Ministry of Finance – Customs Service Department.

All public and private sector institutions as well as non–governmental organizations, not only from eastern provinces of Poland but from the whole country, are eligible to apply for assistance.

Project implementation scheme:
A special out–of–competition procedure applies within specific thematic focuses, without any timeframe set for submitting applications.  Due to the specificity of national security, it is the Ministry of the Interior that indicates projects in this area. Then the projects are subject to formal and substantive assessment by the Intermediate Institution, National Coordinating Institution and a Swiss institution. The final decision on funding is made by institutions of the donor–country.

Management and control system

The Fund’s management and control system is based on the cooperation of the following institutions:

  1. National Coordinating Institution: Department for Aid Programmes and Technical Assistance of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Development,
  2. Competent ministry: Department for European Union and International Cooperation of the Ministry of the Interior,
  3. Intermediate Body: Digital Poland Projects Cetre (previously Implementing Authority for European Programmes),
  4. Paying Authority: Paying Authority Department of the Ministry of Finance,
  5. Audit Institution: Ministry of Finance.

For more information, please visit the website of the National Coordinating Institution.