UNION CIVIL PROTECTION MECHANISM CALL FOR PROPOSALS UNION CIVIL PROTECTION MECHANISM EXERCISES

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1 EUROPEAN COMMISSION DIRECTORATE-GENERAL HUMANITARIAN AID AND CIVIL PROTECTION B.1 Emergency Response UNION CIVIL PROTECTION MECHANISM CALL FOR PROPOSALS UNION CIVIL PROTECTION MECHANISM EXERCISES GRANT APPLICATION GUIDE 2016 edition This guide includes detailed information on the Call for Proposals for Civil Protection Mechanism Exercises and advice on how to prepare applications

2 TABLE OF CONTENT 1. Introduction Background Objective(s) and Priorities Timetable Budget Available Exercise Concept under this Call Selection Of Proposals Admissibility Requirements Eligibility Criteria Eligible applicants Eligible activities Exclusion Criteria Exclusion from participation: Exclusion from award Supporting documents Selection Criteria Financial capacity Operational capacity Award Criteria Award procedure Legal Commitments Financial Provisions General Principles Funding forms of grants Publicity By the beneficiaries By the Commission Data Protection Procedure for the Submission of Proposals Applicants shall submit proposals Obligatory Documents to be Attached to the Application Specific Requirements for Public Entities Specific Recommendations for each Application Form Part 1: Forms A and T Forms F / 62

3 23. How to Prepare and Draft a Proposal? Checklist for Submitting Grant Applications / 62

4 PREFACE Welcome to the guide for submitting proposals for exercise projects in the framework of the Union Civil Protection Mechanism Exercises (Action 2.6 of the Work Programme 2016 in this guide referred to as WP 2016). This document has been designed to be a guide for applicants. It serves as a reference document to provide clarifications and answers to questions you may have when preparing your application. Please read it carefully. In addition to this guide, you are strongly encouraged to consult the European Commission's ECHO website: The website is updated regularly and the date of the latest update is indicated on the webpage. If you cannot find the answer to your question in this guide, do not hesitate to send your questions in writing (preferably by ) to the Emergency Response Unit (DG ECHO B.1) of the Commission at Please contact the Commission only after having tried to find the information in this guide, its annexes and the included references. Asking for clarifications has no impact on the final award decision. Union Civil Protection Mechanism Exercises can be financed from two separate budget items in the Call for Proposals for Union Civil Protection Mechanism Exercises 2016 (hereinafter referred to as the 2016 call). Exercise projects financed through the internal budget item are reserved for participating states of the Mechanism only 1. A consortium must involve entities from at least two participating states 2 (associated beneficiaries) of the Union Civil Protection Mechanism other than the entity from a participating state of the Mechanism organising and hosting the exercise (coordinating beneficiary) 3, committing to dispatch intervention teams, civil protection modules, and/or technical assistance and support teams through the ERCC. In total, the consortium must include entities from at least three participating states of the Mechanism. Dispatching intervention teams is not necessary for table top exercises. Exercise projects financed through the external budget item must 1 See 8.2 for a further explanation on eligible projects.. 2 Participating states of the Union Civil Protection Mechanism include the 28 EU MS, Iceland, Norway, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia. Turkey is in the process of ratifying the Agreement for participation in the Mechanism. 3 International organizations can act as the coordinating or associated beneficiary of an exercise. However, in order for a project proposal to be eligible for Union funding under this Call, there must be at least one PS of the Mechanism acting as a coordinating beneficiary or as an associated beneficiary in the Consortium. 4 / 62

5 involve entities from at least one European Neighbourhood Policy Country 4 or one Instrument for Pre-accession assistance II (IPA II) beneficiary 5 not participating in the Mechanism and an entity from at least one additional country ( European Neighbourhood Policy country, IPA II beneficiary not participating in the Mechanism or a participating state) (associated beneficiaries) other than an entity from a participating state of the Mechanism which is the coordinating beneficiary of the exercise. The aim of these exercises will be to maximize the exchange of knowledge and experience on the EU Mechanism with the third countries. 6 In total, the consortium must include entities from at least three countries, of which one must be a participating state of the Mechanism, and one must be an eligible third country. Applicants thus have to indicate whether they apply for funding from the internal budget line or external budget line. The applicants shall pay particular attention to the countries eligible to be financed under each budget line. The eligibility criteria will be explained in greater detail below. Before submitting the application, please do not forget to consult the checklist, which can be found in chapters 17 and 24. Consider also that it will take time to fill in the forms and that all the necessary documents need to be gathered to complete the application. Please start filling in the forms promptly in order to comply with the deadline for the submissions of proposals, as set out in part 3. This guide is divided into six parts: Chapters 1 to 4 are the introductory part providing an overview of the objectives and priorities of this Call for proposals, detailing the timelines and the budget possibilities. Chapter 5 explains the concept of exercise projects, eligible for funding. Chapters 6 to 18 outline the process and the requirements to be complied with for a proposal to be selected and for the grant to be awarded. Chapters 19 to 22 explain how each of the forms attached to this guide should be filled out. Chapters 23 and 24 give further practical advice on how to prepare a proposal, and a checklist to be consulted prior to submitting the application. This guide is updated annually to make it as user-friendly as possible. You are more than welcome to share your comments and suggestions on how to further improve the guide by sending an to 4 Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan are all Countries under the European Neighbourhood Policy East whereas Morocco, Algeria, Tunis, Libya Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Palestine and Lebanon are under the European Neighbourhood South. 5 The IPA II beneficiary countries include 5 candidate countries; Serbia, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Albania, Turkey and Montenegro, and two potential candidate countries, Kosovo and Bosnia and Herzegovina. 6 International organizations can act as the coordinating or associated beneficiary of an exercise. However, in order for a project proposal to be eligible for Union funding under this Call, there must be at least one PS of the Mechanism acting as a coordinating beneficiary or an associated beneficiary in the Consortium. 5 / 62

6 Emergency Response Unit DG HUMANITARIAN AID and CIVIL PROTECTION EUROPEAN COMMISSION 6 / 62

7 PART I 1. INTRODUCTION BACKGROUND Decision No 1313/2013/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 December 2013 on a Union Civil Protection Mechanism 7 (hereinafter the Decision) establishes a Union Civil Protection Mechanism, hereafter the Mechanism. The general purpose is to provide, on request, support in the event of major emergencies and to facilitate improved coordination of assistance intervention. The Mechanism should facilitate the response to protect primarily people but also the environment and property, including cultural heritage, in the event of natural and man-made disasters, acts of terrorism and technological, radiological or environmental accidents, including accidental marine pollution, occurring inside or outside the European Union, taking into account the special needs of the isolated, outermost and other regions or islands of the European Union. In Article 13(1) of the above Decision the Commission is tasked to set up and manage a programme of exercises. The Commission Implementing Decision of laying down rules for the implementation of Decision No 1313/2013/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council on a Union Civil Protection Mechanism and repealing Decisions 2004/277/EC, Euratom and 2007/606/EC, Euratom (C(2014)7489 final) 8 (hereinafter the Implementing Decision) in Chapter 9 defines the exercise programme, its strategic framework and priorities. The target group, which in line with Chapter 9, Article 32(3) (a) of the Implementing Decision includes the response capacity of Member States, in particular with regard to teams and other assets provided in assistance interventions under the Union Mechanism. The aims of the exercise programme defined in Chapter 9, Article 32(3)) are reproduced below: "The exercise programme shall in particular aim at: (a) improving the response capacity of Member States, in particular with regard to teams and other assets provided in assistance interventions under the Union Mechanism; 7 OJ L347, , p OJ L320, , p / 62

8 (b) improving and verifying the procedures and establishing a common approach for the coordination of assistance interventions under the Union Mechanism and reducing the response time in major disasters; (c) enhancing cooperation between the civil protection services of Member States and the Commission; (d) identifying and sharing lessons learnt; (e) testing the implementation of lessons learnt." 2. OBJECTIVE(S) AND PRIORITIES The adopted WP 2016 can be found on this Call s website. This Call for Proposals for exercises refers to Action 2.6 of the WP 2016 aimed at improving preparedness. The objectives are: To improve civil protection preparedness and response to all kinds of disasters, including marine pollution 9, and chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear (CBRN) disasters, as well as combined disasters and disasters simultaneously affecting a number of countries (inside or outside the participating states of the Mechanism) by providing a testing environment of established and/or new operational concepts and procedures of the Mechanism and a learning opportunity for all actors involved in civil protection assistance interventions under the Mechanism. The expected results are: Improving the response capacity of Member States, in particular with regard to teams and other assets provided in civil protection assistance interventions. Improving and verifying the procedures and establishing a common approach for the coordination of civil protection assistance interventions and reducing the response time in major disasters Enhancing cooperation between the civil protection and marine pollution services of the Member States, the Commission and other relevant actors. Identifying and sharing lessons learned. Testing the implementation of lessons learned 9 Other marine incidents which are security related are also relevant. 8 / 62

9 Type of Activity Plan, conduct and evaluate exercises with scenarios simulating the situation and conditions of all types of disasters for the activation of the Mechanism, including marine pollution and CBRN disasters, as well as combined disasters and disasters affecting simultaneously a number of countries (inside or outside the participating states of the Mechanism). The plans for the exercises should also take into account the results of evaluations of previous exercises as well as lessons learned from civil protection actions. Needs of vulnerable groups including persons with disabilities should also be taken into consideration. The exercises can be full scale exercises, command post exercises with limited deployment, and table top exercises. A combination of two or three of these exercise concepts is considered as strength. The involvement of Member States is ensured through the ERCC, according to established procedures (e.g. use of CECIS, and activation of the Mechanism) and deployment of exercise participants as defined in Art. 32 of Commission Implementing Decision 2014/762/EU laying down rules for the implementation of Decision No 1313/2013/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council on a Union Civil Protection Mechanism 10 i.e. intervention teams (including modules), teams of assessment and/or coordination experts (EUCPT), national key contact point staff, other intervention support resources and officials of the EU Institutions, including humanitarian aid experts (if required by the scenario). Priority issues to be addressed by the exercise projects shall be: Host Nation Support; Deployment of assets and teams of the European Emergency Response Capacity (EERC); Testing ERCC procedures; Information exchange between affected country and Member States ; Crisis communication; Use of Mechanism's transport and logistic procedures; 10 OJ L320, ,p.1 9 / 62

10 3. TIMETABLE Stages Date and time or indicative period a) Publication of the call 04/03/2016 b) Deadline for submitting applications 20/05/2016 c) Evaluation period May-September 2016 d) Information to applicants 30/11/2016 e) Signature of grant agreement Before 31/12/2016 f) Starting date of the project 01/01/ /06/ BUDGET AVAILABLE The total budget earmarked for the co-financing of exercise projects is EUR EUR have been reserved for exercises involving only Participating States and EUR for exercises with the involvement of one or more IPA II beneficiary countries which are not Participating States to the Mechanism or countries under the European Neighbourhood Policy (for more information see the WP 2016). The EU contribution per exercise project 11 is limited to a maximum of EUR The maximum EU co-funding rate (percentage applied on the eligible costs according to the budget of the exercise project) in the framework of this Call is up to 85% of the total eligible costs per proposal. Given the complementary nature of EU grants, at least 15% of the total exercise project cost must be funded by other sources. The applicant is encouraged to look for other possible local, national or international, private and public (non EU) co-financing. The Commission reserves the right not to grant all the funds available and to award a grant lower than the amount applied for. 11 A Union Civil Protection Mechanism exercise is referred to as an exercise project throughout this guide. 10 / 62

11 PART II 5. EXERCISE CONCEPT UNDER THIS CALL The exercise can be a table-top, command-post or full scale exercises (TTX, CPX or FSX). A combination of two or three of these types of exercises is possible. A TTX is designed to put real crisis managers in a situation to use existing plans and procedures to take decisions according to a proposed scenario. A TTX can also be used to develop plans and procedures were there are none. Being a discussion mode exercise, it does not require any deployment but rather gathers the exercising participants in one single location under the guidance and control of experienced staff. A CPX is designed to put command structures in a real situation, focusing on the tasks and responsibilities they are to perform while the deployment forces are simulated. The tasks may include requesting the deployment of a EUCP Team and possibly key staff of operational assets together with command and communication staff and tools. The exercising participants work from their offices or command posts. A FSX is designed to replicate one or several phases of an emergency with the commitment of all the public bodies and authorities that would be committed in a real emergency. All the functions (operation, command, logistics, communication, public information, etc.) required in an emergency are replicated and played in a coordinated way. The scenario may take into account one, several or all of the following phases: pre-alert, alert and request for assistance, deployment, engagement, disengagement. The scenario of the exercise depicts a disaster that overwhelms the response capacity of the affected state. The international dimension of the exercise is ensured by the participation of entities from at least three different countries, as outlined in the WP for This participation requires the involvement of the national civil protection operational point of contact and for FSX the deployment of civil protection intervention team(s). 12 The participation of an international organization is also possible under the conditions outlined in Chapter 8 of the Call. 11 / 62

12 Minimum requirements for the exercises are that: The procedures of the Mechanism are activated. A team of minimum 4 experts plus one ERCC Liaison Officer (ERCC LO), tasked to facilitate the coordination of the international assistance, assess needs or provide the affected State with specific expertise, is deployed during the conduct of the exercise. The cost of this deployment needs to be covered by the exercise project, not including the cost related to the ERCC LO (which is covered by the European Commission). One observer for each participating state is invited to the exercise. The cost of the observer programme needs to be covered by the exercise project. One observer from eligible third countries is invited to the exercise. The cost of the observer programme needs to be covered by the exercise project. The state receiving the assistance implements host nation support procedures and tests the Host Nation Support Guidelines developed in the framework of the Mechanism. It is mandatory that also the operational structure of the national civil protection authority and/or the marine pollution authority, as necessary depending on the exercise scenario, of each exercise participant takes part in the exercise as an exercising participant (see A8 form). Exercising participants could also come from other response capacities, which could be available from the competent services, or which may be provided by non-governmental organisations and other relevant entities. (Article 9 (4) of the Decision). There are no specific restrictions in either the total number of exercising participants or the number of the members of each team. Particular consideration should be given to this issue in order to ensure that the number of exercising participants allows proper play, in order to provide the best opportunity to achieve the objectives and expected results. If operationally justified, individuals not coming from beneficiaries in the project may be invited to events within the project (e.g. the invitation of experts to participate at conferences and planning meetings as well as to have the responsibility for specific tasks during the conduct of the exercise). Their travel and subsistence costs may be covered by the Union contribution, provided that they are included in the project proposal and the approved budget. Experts and teams with the appropriate qualifications and coming from eligible third countries can participate as exercising participants in the exercises aimed at eligible third countries, as outlined in the WP Personnel of international organisations and agencies, in particular those that form part of the United Nations System, can participate as exercising participants when relevant. Their travel and subsistence expenses can be covered if they are included in the exercise project proposal and the budget. The exercise duration is a minimum of two days and one night, minimum 36 hours, except for TTX that can be limited to two full days. When the alert and request phase is played, this may take place days or weeks before the actual presence of assets on the field or the start of the exercise conduct. 12 / 62

13 One of the main principles during the exercise conduct, which should be taken into account during the planning phase, is that those involved in planning or project management of the exercise shall not be exercising participants in the exercise. It is an absolute requirement that an organizational chart of the planning group is attached as an annex to the proposal. A team, usually referred to as distaff, has to be dedicated to control the exercise, i.e. providing injects, information and reactions to the exercising participants. Besides provision of injects, the role of the distaff is to ensure that the activities of the exercising participants stay within the limits permitted by the resources dedicated to the exercise, as well as to take care of all security and safety aspects. It is an absolute requirement that an organizational chart of the distaff is attached as an annex for a proposal to be selected. There are no restrictions on the geographical area the scenario is supposed to take place. The scenario can be inside or outside the EU. Particular attention should be given to scenarios that take place in disaster prone areas. For exercises targeted for the participation of eligible third countries, the exercise can, but does not have to be, conducted outside of the EU, yet it shall benefit the involved third countries. Other activities such as workshops, planning meetings etc should in principle be organized in the third country. Evaluation throughout the exercise project is a key part of the proposal. It is the process that links the objectives and expected results to the actual outcomes of the exercise conduct. A team of skilled people has to be dedicated to this function, and they shall be given an independent role in this work. This team is in charge of preparing the evaluation and delivering an evaluation report that may include the organisation of a hot wash-up at the end of the exercise. The evaluation team needs to follow the exercise project from the start of the planning process until the completion of the exercise project. Please note that the evaluation of the exercise cannot be based on observers only. It is however a possibility to task the observers to make short reports about their observations, which may then be used as an addition to the findings of the professional evaluators. The evaluation function is neither control nor testing. It is not about individual performance but about appropriateness of the procedures applied in an international environment. It is an absolute requirement for a proposal to be selected that an organizational chart of the evaluation committee is attached as an annex. It is advisable to dedicate a team to prepare a proposal (based on the evaluation report) on how the findings of the evaluation report can be implemented in relevant structures after the end of the exercise project. 13 / 62

14 PART III 6. SELECTION OF PROPOSALS When the proposals have been received by the Commission, an evaluation committee is being appointed, which will evaluate all the proposals against a set of criteria which will be discussed below. First, the proposals must pass the admissibility requirements, the eligibility criteria, the exclusion criteria, and the selection criteria. Proposals that meet these requirements and criteria will advance further to the evaluation of the award criteria, in which it will be awarded points. The minimum score for being selected is 70 out of 100, or 70%. The next chapters will present these criteria, and it is crucial that the applicants go through these chapters carefully. Honouring all of these criteria in the proposal is essential to be awarded a grant. 7. ADMISSIBILITY REQUIREMENTS Applications must be sent no later than the deadline for submitting applications referred to in chapter 3. Applications must be submitted in writing, accompanied by an electronic copy on a CD or USB stick, using the application form available at: Additional information concerning the submission of proposals is outlined in chapter 16. Number of copies of the proposal: three printed paper copies which include all Annexes/Supporting Documents (one original clearly identified as such, plus two copies) and an electronic version of the application. The electronic versions shall be one single file, including the A, T and F forms with all the Annexes/Supporting Documents and one set of word and excel versions. Financial forms must be submitted in Excel and other documents in Word. Both the paper copies and the electronic versions should be arranged according to the numbers of the forms (e.g. A1, A2, A3 etc., followed by T1, T2, T3 etc. and F1, F2, F3 etc. and the financial viability form followed by the Annexes/Supporting Documents). Except for dates and signatures, the information in the application forms may not be hand-written. Concerning Forms A9 (Legal entities form) and A10 (financial identification form), the links on forms A9 and A10 lead to web applications that can be typed and printed. Applications must be submitted in an official language of the European Union. However, in order to facilitate assessment by evaluators, an English translation should preferably accompany any proposal written in another language. In such cases, applicants should submit their applications both in hard copy (i.e. paper) and in electronic format in their own language and in English. Applicants may request a different language version of any document published for this call, which is necessary for responding to the call. However, if such a request is made, 14 / 62

15 the deadline for submission of proposals may have to be postponed until the translation of the requested document has been completed, which might considerably delay the whole process of submission and evaluation of proposals. Please note in this regard that it is of utmost importance that the evaluation and selection process under this Call for Proposals are completed in due time, as otherwise the available budget may be lost (at least partly). According to the EU Financial Regulation, budgetary appropriations available for this Call must be committed in All forms must be submitted (if a specific form is not applicable, please mark "not applicable" or "N/A" on the form). All forms must be signed (where required, the application forms should be completed with dates and signature in such a way that the status and full name of the signatory are clearly identifiable). Failure to comply with these admissibility requirements may lead to the rejection of the application. 8. ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA Eligible applicants 14 In order to be eligible for a grant, applicants must: (1) Be legal persons. (2) Belong to one of the following categories: private entities, public entities, or international organisations as defined by Article 43 of the Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) No 1268/2012 of 29 October 2012 on the rules of application of Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 966/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union ('Rules of Application'). If the successful applicant is an international organisation, the grant agreement template may be adjusted where need be. (3) Be established in one of the 33 European Civil Protection Mechanism Participating States 15, which are the 28 EU members, Iceland, Norway, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia REGULATION (EU, EURATOM) No 966/2012 OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 25 October 2012 on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union and repealing Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002, OJ L 298, , p.1, Art. 131 FR, 201 RAP 14 The eligibility criteria formulated in Commission notice Nr.2013/C-205/05 (OJEU C-205 of 19/07/2013, pp. 9-11) shall apply for all exercise projects under this Call for Proposals, including with respect to third parties referred to in Article 137 of the EU's Financial regulation. 15 Turkey is in the process of ratifying its agreement for the participation in the Civil Protection Mechanism. It will be considered a participating state under this Call if and when the European Commission is informed of the ratification by diplomatic channels before the deadline for submission of proposals under this Call. 15 / 62

16 (4) For exercise projects under the External budget item 17, be established in eligible third countries which are: - The IPA II beneficiary countries which are not yet participating states to the Mechanism: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Turkey 18 and Kosovo 19, - Eastern Neighbourhood countries: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine; - Southern Neighbourhood countries 20 : Algeria, Libya, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine and Tunisia. Important: Eligible third countries and international organizations can participate in the implementation of projects under the external budget item. Eligible third countries cannot act as the Coordinating Beneficiary. Therefore, applications submitted by third countries which are not participating states to the Mechanism will be considered ineligible. 6) Be directly responsible for the preparation and management of the exercise project with their partners (beneficiaries), i.e. not acting as an intermediary; 7) Involve the national competent authority and/or the marine pollution authorities depending on the exercise scenario of both Participating States of the mechanism and eligible third countries. With their proposals, applicants must enclose supporting documents (form A8) showing that they comply with the above requirement before submitting the proposal to the Commission. This does not apply to international organisations. For a list of the national central civil protection authorities recognised by the European Commission, see: - The Coordinating Beneficiary submits the application for funding and is the single point of contact for the Commission. It is the only beneficiary to report directly to the Commission on the exercise project s technical and financial progress. It receives the Union financial contribution and ensures its distribution. The Coordinating Beneficiary 16 This does not apply to International Organisations. 17 The eligibility criteria formulated in Commission notice Nr.2013/C-205/05 (OJEU C-205 of 19/07/2013, pp. 9-11) shall apply for all exercise projects under this Call for Proposals, including with respect to third parties referred to in Article 137 of the EU's Financial regulation. 18 If the agreement for participation in the Union Civil Protection Mechanism between the European Commission and Turkey enters into force before the expiry of the deadline for submitting applications under this Call, Turkey may be eligible for funding under the internal budget item. Developments on the ratification will be posted on ECHO website. 19 This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence. 20 Participation of Syria is currently suspended. 16 / 62

17 must be involved in the technical implementation of the exercise project it cannot act, in the context of the project, as a sub-contractor to one of its beneficiaries. - The Associated Beneficiaries must contribute technically to the exercise project and hence be responsible for the implementation of one or several project activities. It cannot act, in the context of the exercise project, as a sub-contractor to the Coordinating Beneficiary or to other Associated Beneficiaries. It must do everything in its power to help the Coordinating Beneficiary fulfil its obligations under the grant agreement. In particular, it must provide the Coordinating Beneficiary with all the necessary documents and information (technical or financial) required for the reporting to the Commission. The exercise project may have up to 3 other types of participants in their implementation and/or funding: affiliated entities, co-financer(s) (other than the Union), and sub-contractor(s). Entities affiliated to the Coordinating Beneficiary/Associated Beneficiaries may take part in the exercise project, provided that they also comply with the eligibility and exclusion criteria applicable to other applicants. Affiliated entities are legal entities having a legal or capital link with the beneficiaries, which is neither limited to the exercise project nor established for the sole purpose of the implementation of the exercise project. This may include, among others, members of the same association, federation, grouping, etc. Affiliated entities may also declare eligible cost and for this purpose, if applicable, applicants shall identify affiliated entities in the application forms when submitting the proposal. A project co-financer only contributes to the exercise project with financial resources, has no technical responsibilities and cannot receive parts of the EU financial contribution. Furthermore it cannot act, in the context of the exercise project, as a subcontractor to any of the beneficiaries. For specific tasks of a fixed duration necessary for the implementation of the exercise project, the beneficiaries may also have recourse to contractors/sub-contractors, which provide goods/works/services on the basis of procurement contracts. Sub-contractors cannot act as beneficiaries or vice-versa. In order to assess the applicants' eligibility, the following supporting documents are requested: 8.2. Eligible projects To be eligible for the award of a grant under this Call, the proposed projects must comply with the following conditions: Exercise projects financed through the internal budget item are reserved for participating states of the Mechanism only. A consortium must 17 / 62

18 involve entities from at least two participating states (associated beneficiaries) of the Union Civil Protection Mechanism other than the entity from a participating state organising and hosting the exercise (coordinating beneficiary). 21 In total, the consortium must include entities from at least three participating states of the Mechanism. A consortium is to be understood as a group of at least three countries, or entities within at least three countries, which have agreed to conduct an exercise. It is comprised of the coordinating beneficiary of the consortium, and associated beneficiaries. For all three exercise concepts, participation must, as a minimum, be in the form of exercising participants. For full scale exercises, this implies the deployment of intervention teams, civil protection modules, or technical assistance and support teams through the ERCC and possibly other coordination and collaboration means if required by the scenario. Exercise projects financed through the external budget item must involve entities from at least one European Neighbourhood Policy country or one IPA II beneficiary not participating in the Mechanism and an entity from at least one additional country (European Neighbourhood Policy country, IPA II beneficiary not participating in the Mechanism or a participating state of the Mechanism) (associated beneficiaries) together with an entity from the participating state of Mechanism which is the coordinating beneficiary of the exercise. 22 In total, the consortium must include entities from at least three countries, of which one must be a participating state of the Mechanism, and one must be an eligible third country. The aim of these exercises will be to maximize the exchange of knowledge and experience on the EU Mechanism with the third countries. It should be noted that exercise projects under this budget line shall be to the benefit of third countries. As such, all activities forming part of the exercise project shall in principle be organized in the third country. The eligibility criteria formulated in Commission notice no 2013/C-205/5 (OJEU C-205 of 19/07/2013, pp. 9-11) shall apply for all actions under this Work Programme, including with respect to third parties as referred to in Article 137 of Financial Regulation. 8.3 Eligible activities Eligible exercise projects to be co-financed under this Call for Proposals will comprise one or several of the following types of civil protection exercises: Full Scale Exercises (FSX) 21 International organizations can act as the coordinating or associated beneficiary of an exercise. However, in order for a project proposal to be eligible for Union funding under this Call, there must be at least one participating state of the Mechanism acting as a coordinating beneficiary or as an associated beneficiary in the Consortium. 22 International organizations can act as the coordinating or associated beneficiary of an exercise. However, in order for a project proposal to be eligible for Union funding under this Call, there must be at least one PS of the Mechanism acting as a coordinating beneficiary or as an associated beneficiary in the Consortium 18 / 62

19 Command Post Exercises (CPX) Table top exercises or other type of discussion based exercises. (TTX) The involvement of Participating States' 24/7 operational contact point is ensured through the ERCC, according to established procedures (use of CECIS, etc.) and deployment of exercising participants The eligibility criteria as stated in the WP 2016 pose certain minimum requirements: The emergency scenario is realistic and of such magnitude such as to overwhelm the capacities of the affected country; The request for assistance to the ERCC is established through the official channels of the affected state(s) (National Authority(ies)) and coordinated through the ERCC and the official channels of the other countries; The Mechanism is activated; and an EUCP Team is deployed. Involvement of the national civil protection authorities of the countries in the project (and/or the marine pollution authorities as necessary depending on the exercise scenario). As a minimum, the involvement should be in form of participation by the 24/7 national contact point in the exercise. The application contains a plan describing how improvements should be implemented following the evaluation of the exercise and how improvements implemented would be retested. The second requirement, "involvement" applies to the Competent National Civil Protection and or Marine Pollution Authority of each country (Participating State or Third Country) deploying intervention resources on the field and it amounts to participation in the exercise play of at least the 24/7 operational contact point through CECIS and other communication means as appropriate. The signed A8 form is the mandatory evidence for this involvement. The planning phase must start between 01/01/2017 and 30/06/2017. The kick-off meeting, which is considered to be the start of the planning process, has to be organised in Brussels preferably as soon as possible after the start date of the exercise project. Normally, it is organized in the premises of the European Commission. By way of exception, it is accepted that the conference takes place in the premises of the Permanent Representation of the State or the Region of the Coordinating Beneficiary. The maximum duration of an exercise project is 24 months. 9. EXCLUSION CRITERIA 9.1 Exclusion from participation 23 : Applicants will be excluded from participating in the Call for Proposals procedure if they are in any of the following situations: 23 Article 106 FR 19 / 62

20 (a) (b) (c) (d) (e) (f) they are bankrupt or being wound up, are having their affairs administered by the courts, have entered into an arrangement with creditors, have suspended business activities, are the subject of proceedings concerning those matters, or are in any analogous situation arising from a similar procedure provided for in national legislation or regulations; they or persons having powers of representation, decision making or control over them have been convicted of an offence concerning their professional conduct by a judgment of a competent authority of a Member State which has the force of res judicata; they have been guilty of grave professional misconduct proven by any means which the contracting authority can justify including by decisions of the EIB and international organisations; they are not in compliance with their obligations relating to the payment of social security contributions or the payment of taxes in accordance with the legal provisions of the country in which they are established or with those of the country of the contracting authority or those of the country where the grant agreement is to be performed; they or persons having powers of representation, decision making or control over them have been the subject of a judgment which has the force of res judicata for fraud, corruption, involvement in a criminal organisation, money laundering or any other illegal activity, where such an illegal activity is detrimental to the Union's financial interests; they are currently subject to an administrative penalty. 9.2 Exclusion from award 24 Applicants will not be awarded a grant if, in the course of the grant award procedure, they: (a) are subject to a conflict of interest; (b) are guilty of misrepresenting the information required by the Commission as a condition of participation in the grant award procedure or fail to supply this information; (c) find themselves in one of the situations of exclusion, referred to in section 8.1. The same exclusion criteria apply to affiliated entities. Administrative and financial penalties may be imposed on applicants, or affiliated entities where applicable, that are guilty of misrepresentation. 24 Article 107 FR 20 / 62

21 9.3 Supporting documents 25 Applicants must sign a declaration on their honour certifying that they are not in one of the situations referred to in articles 106(1) and 107 to 109 of the Financial Regulation of the European Union, filling in the relevant form (A2) 10 SELECTION CRITERIA Financial capacity 27 Applicants must have stable and sufficient sources of funding to maintain their activity throughout the period during which the exercise project is carried out or the year for which the grant is awarded and to participate in its funding. In order to ensure this, the Commission will assess individually the financial capacity of each of the beneficiaries against their estimated share of the requested EU grant. The verification of the financial capacity shall not apply to public bodies such as national, regional and local authorities and International Organisations. The financial capacity will be assessed on the basis of the following supporting documents to be submitted as part of the Application by each of the potential beneficiaries: a declaration on honour (Form A2) for the Coordinating Beneficiary the profit and loss account and the balance sheet for the 2 last financial years for which the accounts were closed. For newly created entities, the business plan might replace these documents; and the Financial Viability Form provided, filled in with the relevant statutory accounting figures, in order to calculate the ratios as detailed in the form. - for the grants EUR in addition an audit report produced by an approved external auditor certifying the accounts for the last financial year available shall be submitted. Please note that the threshold of EUR is applicable per beneficiary. In the case of legal entities forming one applicant, the above requirements apply to those entities. On the basis of the documents submitted, if the Commission considers that financial capacity is not satisfactory, it may: request further information; propose a grant agreement without pre-financing; propose a grant agreement with a pre-financing paid in instalments; propose a grant agreement with a pre-financing covered by a bank guarantee 25 Art. 197 RAP 26 Art. 132 FR, 202 RAP 27 Art. 131, 132 FR, 202 RAP. 21 / 62

22 where applicable, require the joint and several financial liability of all the cobeneficiaries; reject the application. PRE-FINANCING GUARANTEE 28 In the event that the applicants' financial capacity is not satisfactory, a prefinancing guarantee for up to the same amount as the pre-financing may be requested in order to limit the financial risks linked to the pre-financing payment. The financial guarantee, in euro, shall be provided by an approved bank or financial institution established in one of the Member State of the European Union. When the beneficiary is established in a third country, the authorising officer responsible may agree that a bank or financial institution established in that third country may provide the guarantee if he considers that the bank or financial institution offers equivalent security and characteristics as those offered by a bank or financial institution established in a Member State. Amounts blocked in bank accounts shall not be accepted as financial guarantees. The guarantee may be replaced by a joint and several guarantees by a third party or by a joint guarantee of the beneficiaries of a project who are parties to the same grant agreement The guarantee shall be released as the pre-financing is gradually cleared against interim payments or payments of balances to the beneficiary, in accordance with the conditions laid down in the grant agreement. FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITY Within a multi-beneficiary grant, the operational and financial risks may be shared. In line with Article II.26.3.c of the General Conditions, the beneficiaries are jointly and severally liable up to the value of the contribution that the beneficiary held liable is entitled to receive. This contribution is to be indicated in the estimated budget breakdown. Alternatively, if foreseen in the Grant Agreement, the beneficiaries may be held jointly and severally liable for any amount due to the Commission by any one of them, up to the maximum amount specified in Article I.3 of the Grant Agreement (i.e. joint and several responsibilities without a ceiling per beneficiary). When applicable, the beneficiaries shall also be jointly liable for interest on late payments. 28 Art. 134 FR, 206 RAP. 22 / 62

23 10.2 Operational capacity 29 Applicants must have the professional competencies as well as the qualifications necessary to complete the activities in the project proposal. The purpose of the verification is therefore to assess whether each applicant has the professional competencies and qualifications required to complete the project. The operational capacity of each individual entity: the Coordinating Beneficiary must possess sufficient experience in managing EU/transnational projects of a volume similar that of the proposed exercise project; the Associated Beneficiaries should demonstrate that they have project management experience proportionate to the tasks assigned to them in the proposal. The assessment will be based on the documents submitted as part of the application and in particular: the declaration on honour of the Coordinating Beneficiary (form A2); curriculum vitae or description of the profile of the people primarily responsible for managing and implementing the project, preferably using the model provided at: the activity reports of the Coordinating Beneficiary and each Associated Beneficiary for the year preceding the project submitted for Union funding, including sufficiently detailed information which allows the Evaluation Committee to assess the operational capacity (this does not apply to projects in which a National, Regional or local Civil Protection authority of a Participating State of the Mechanism is acting as the Coordinating Beneficiary); an exhaustive lists of previous projects and activities performed and connected to the objectives and results of this Call. In the case of legal entities forming one applicant, the above requirements apply to those entities. A given applicant may participate in several projects; it should however have sufficient financial and operational capacity to meet its obligations in all the projects if they were all awarded a grant. It should also make sure that any Union funding received, is clearly recorded in its accounting systems in a way that shows the link with each respective project, making clear which cost were incurred for which project. 11. AWARD CRITERIA 30 Eligible applications will be assessed on the basis of the following criteria: 29 Art. 131 FR, 202 RAP 30 Art. 132 FR, 203 RAP 23 / 62

24 Understanding (20 points): The use of the elements and the resources of the Mechanism and the testing of procedures proposed by the exercise project correspond to the objectives, and the strategic and legislative context of the call. "Understanding" refers to how well the applicants have understood the objectives and the expected results of exercises as referred to in WP 2016 under action 2.6 and have accordingly formulated the proposed exercise project to address and take into account the various issues of importance and interest in civil protection response. More specifically, through this criterion the appropriateness, the consistency and the clarity of presentation of the exercise purpose and objectives, the scenario and the exercise players will be assessed. The following sub-criteria will be applied 1-4 up to 5 points. Objectives and expected results: Are the objectives and the expected results of the proposed exercise project appropriate, consistent and coherent and clearly stated, and in line with the objectives and the expected results for exercises project as stated in section 2.6 of the Work Programme 2016? (1) Objectives and expected results: Are the objectives and the expected results of the proposed exercise project appropriate, consistent and coherent and clearly stated, and in line with the objectives and the expected results for exercise projects as stated in section 2.6 of the Work Programme (2) Scenario basis and consistency: Is the scenario appropriate given the exercise objectives and expected results? Does the proposed scenario have a sound basis on risk assessment, or has data from actual emergencies been used? (3) Scenario importance and complexity: Does the scenario address and provide an opportunity to test issues that are part of the current discussions in the civil protection response at the European Union level and/or in eligible third countries? Does the scenario provide an opportunity of testing and/or developing in an integrated manner various available Civil Protection response resources (various categories of the target group) and tools (e.g. transport grant, satellite images, etc.)? Does the scenario emphasise cooperation/coordination at various levels? Does the project foresee use of the European Emergency Response Capacity (Voluntary Pool)? (4) Exercising participants: Is the selection of exercising participants appropriate given the objectives and the expected results? Does the proposed exercise project involve a wide range of emergency responders and does it represent a wider European presence in contrast to national exercises?(civil protection, police, health and other intervention support or as appropriate, humanitarian aid experts and relevant international organisations)? Methodology (40 points): the proposed project tasks, project management methodology in general and the exercise planning, preparing, conduct, evaluation and implementation planning methodology are suited for the achievement of the exercise project objectives and expected results. They also take into account the standards and procedures of participating states, and as appropriate third countries as well as international standards and conventions (UN), where appropriate. Methodology refers to the exercise project management methodology and the exercise planning (design and development), conduct and, evaluation methodology that will be 24 / 62

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