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Latvia - Regional Policy

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Short-term priorities:

Assessment (November 2003)

Please refer to the fact sheets on the adoption of the Community acquis.

Medium-term priority:

  • introduction of the legal, budgetary and administrative framework of a national policy to deal with regional disparities with an integrated approach, in order to participate in structural programmes of the European Union.

Assessment (October 1999)

No progress has been made in this area.

Assessment (November 2000)

No progress has been made in this area.

Assessment (November 2001)

The national development plan is being drawn up. The Ministry of Finance will be responsible in future for managing the Structural Funds and planning how they are to be used as well as for coordinating national budgetary policy. Progress on legislative, institutional, structural and administrative matters is still limited. Priority should be given to adopting the legal basis for future participation in the Structural Funds.

Assessment (October 2002)

Latvia has made important progress in preparing for the implementation of the economic and social cohesion policy. As regards territorial organisation, Latvia reached an agreement with Eurostat on the NUTS classification (Nomenclature of Territorial Statistical Units): the whole country corresponds to NUTS I and NUTS II levels and is divided into five planning regions at NUTS III level. Latvia adopted the Regional Development Law in March 2002, laying down the general system for regional policy and the Spatial Planning Law in May 2002. The main institutions to be involved in managing the Structural Funds and the Cohesion Fund were designated in February 2002: the Ministry of Finance and the State Treasury will become the managing and paying authorities, respectively for the Structural Funds and the Cohesion Fund. The Ministry of Finance has started its reorganisation by: merging several institutions under its authority, creating new departments and recruiting additional staff. As regards programming, in January 2002, Latvia submitted the National Development Plan (2002-2006) to the Commission, which will serve as the basis for the draft Single Programming Document (SPD). The Latvian SPD will include 6 priorities: one for each Fund (EAGGF, FIFG, ESF) and two for ERDF (business development and infrastructure) with an additional priority for Technical Assistance. In order to promote co-operation among the public administrative levels and to discuss the elaboration of the Plan, two partnership seminars were organised in March and April 2002 with representatives of non-governmental organisations and planning regions. Furthermore, Latvia adopted guidelines on management, monitoring, evaluation and control in March 2002. According to these guidelines, the Ministry of Finance is responsible for the establishment of monitoring and evaluation systems and the overall co-ordination of the internal audit units of all public institutions. The State Audit Office will perform the external financial control. Concerning statistics, a computerised data exchange system is just being created.

Latvia has closed negotiations on the Regional Policy chapter without requesting any transitional arrangements. Now the country has to make further efforts in order to strengthen administrative capacity and develop inter-ministerial co-ordination and partnership. As regards programming, the key focus should be on preparing the SPD and its ex-ante evaluation. Although the bodies in charge of implementing the Structural Funds and the Cohesion Fund have been appointed, the allocation of tasks and the implementing legislation are still to be completed. Latvia should pay particular attention to guaranteeing that project selection and decision-making will be managed within a framework that ensures the transparency, efficiency and reliability of programmes. Generally, all systems and procedures for effective monitoring, financial management and control should be reinforced.

Assessment (November 2003)

Please refer to the fact sheets on the adoption of the Community acquis.

Following the signing of the Accession Treaty on 16 April 2003, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia acceded to the European Union on 1 May 2004.

REFERENCES

Decision 98/263/EC of 30.03.1998
Official Journal L 121, 23.04.1998

Decision 1999/854/EC of 6.12.1999
Official Journal L 335, 28.12.1999

Commission Opinion COM(97) 2004 final
Not published in the Official Journal

Commission Report COM(98) 703 final
Not published in the Official Journal

Commission Report COM(1999) 506 final
Not published in the Official Journal

Commission Report COM(2000) 706 final
Not published in the Official Journal

Commission Report COM(2001) 700 final - SEC(2001) 1749
Not published in the Official Journal

Commission Report COM(2002) 700 final - SEC(2002) 1405
Not published in the Official Journal

Commission Report COM(2003) 675 final - SEC(2003) 1203
Not published in the Official Journal

Treaty of Accession to the European Union [Official Journal L 236, 23.09.2003]

This summary is for information only and is not designed to interpret or replace the reference document.

Last updated: 19.11.2004
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