What is COMCEC Project Funding?
COMCEC Project Funding (CPF) is a financing mechanism introduced by the COMCEC Coordination Office (CCO) in 2013. It finances projects submitted by the Member Countries and relevant OIC Institutions to realize the strategic objectives and outcomes of the COMCEC Strategy. CPF aims at realization of policy recommendations adopted by COMCEC Ministerial Sessions, enhancing solidarity and multilateral cooperation among Member Countries as well as increasing institutional and human capacity in those countries.
Relevant public institutions of the COMCEC Member Countries that are members of the related Working Group and Subsidiary, Specialized and Affiliated OIC Institutions operating in the field of economic and commercial cooperation can submit project proposals. Projects can be designed in one of the 6 different cooperation areas (as agriculture, finance, poverty alleviation, transport and communication, tourism and trade) and in accordance with sectoral themes determined by the CCO and announced in this website. In addition to the Project Owner, there should be 2 partner countries, which can contribute to the project by being a beneficiary or providing technical assistance, human resources, etc.
Funded projects are typically soft in character and have two types as activity-based and research projects. Activity-based projects may include activities such as trainings, workshops, seminars, conferences, study visits, promotional activities, etc. Research projects can include preparation of research studies, policy documents, feasibility studies and reports as well as field visits related to these.
COMCEC Coordination Office issues call for project proposals annually in September via COMCEC website. The Project Owners submit their project proposals through Online Project Submission System in two stages. In the Preliminary Stage, general information about the project and intended activities should be provided. After the initial assessments by the CCO and the independent assessors, short-listed projects are announced. Owner of those projects complete the Final Stage of their project proposals by providing details about activities, human resources, budget and other relevant issues. For research projects, the Project Owner should submit a Terms of Reference (ToR) document, which details the research study, in the Preliminary Stage. If a research project is short-listed, the Project Owner should gather at least three financial and technical offers for the ToR and submit them in the Final Stage. Project submissions should be processed by focal points of the relevant COMCEC Working Group, who owns a username and password for the Online Project Submission System. Maximum project length is 7 months which usually start at April 1st of each year.
The CCO takes into account following main criteria while evaluating the project proposals. POs should give utmost importance to each criterion in order their project proposals to be selected for funding.
- Relevance to the COMCEC Strategy
- Compliance with the COMCEC Ministerial Policy Recommendations and Supported Sectoral Themes published on the COMCEC website
- Promotion of multilateral cooperation among COMCEC member countries
- Regular participation of the PO’s focal points to the relevant Working Group Meetings
- Filling out the Project Fiche properly and with sufficient details
- Qualifications of the proposed project personnel
- Realistic cost estimations in the project budget
- Cooperation and communication with the CCO
- Connection with previous COMCEC funded projects implemented by the PO
The Development Bank of Turkey is one of the main bodies in CPF as it performs the transfer of funds to the Project Owners as well as monitoring the implementation of the projects. Project Owners sign a contract with the Bank detailing the roles, rights and responsibilities of all parties involved in the CPF. Project Owners should make regular reporting to the CCO and Bank during the implementation of the projects. CPF is a grant based financial supporting instrument, which may provide up to 225.000 and 75.000 USD for the projects submitted by the Member Countries and OIC Institutions respectively. Payments are made by the Bank after an expense occurred and reported to the Bank by submitting relevant documents. For the research projects, the payments are made in two installments; first being after the first draft of the research study is approved by the CCO and second being after the approval of the research report.