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Costing of public policy documents: comprehensive capacity building activities held in September and November 2022 with EU support

In September and November 2022, the EU-funded Project “Support for structured policy dialogue, coordination of the implementation of the Association Agreement and enhancement of the legal approximation process” carried a series of activities aimed at building the capacity of all Moldovan line ministries involved in the costing and budgeting of public policy documents (PPD) associated with the implementation of the Association Agreement (AA).

The overall aim of these activities was to ensure that Moldovan civil servants engaged in drafting of PPD would be able to perform proper cost estimations to assess both the costs as well as the budgetary and other resources for the measures associated with the AA and the larger European Union (EU) integration process. Furthermore, by inviting relevant personnel from 13 line ministries, the Project had as a goal ensuring a uniform application of key costing and budgetary principles included in the guidance it has previously developed. The knowledge and skills developed during project activities will have a long-term impact, assisting the Moldovan institutions in the process of EU integration, as well as the costing of other public policy documents.

All activities were carried out in close collaboration with the State Chancellery which played a key organisational role in ensuring a high level of participation from the relevant departments within the Moldovan line ministries. This gracious involvement allowed for strengthening the network and cooperation between the various institutions and as a result ensuring long-term sustainability of the skills learned.

The first key activity constituted organising training of trainers (ToT) sessions with 11 representatives from key stakeholders, namely the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration (MFAEI), the State Chancellery (SC) and the Ministry of Finance (MF). The rationale behind organising these sessions was to build a pool of competent trainers that could disseminate knowledge and support at a rate higher than the one at which a single or a limited number of specialists would be able to. Furthermore, this enhances institutional memory and ensures retention of knowledge which can be subsequently used by the trainers to secure and support the line ministries during the process of approximation of the Moldovan legislation to the EU one.

The second key activity constituted organising and carrying out training workshops with representatives of the Moldovan institutions that are involved in the process of costing of AA related measures with the participation of the trainers’ team from the MFAEI, SC and MF.

During the workshops, valuable input was received from the trainers according to their role and competences. The MFAEI shared the importance of costing within the framework of AA implementation and the support available for designing and costing measures for AA implementation such as the TAIEX instrument. The SC provided input on the practical aspects in respect to the process of PPD approval and the role of the institution in assessing the conformity of proposed measures to the EU legislation. The MF communicated practical aspects that may arise during the annual budgeting process and key considerations that should be accounted for purposes of ensuring that sufficient financial resources exist to cover the proposed measures. 

The Project team also organised a meeting with the professional staff and relevant parliamentary bodies of the Moldovan Parliament, namely: Committee on Foreign Policy and European Integration, Committee on Economy, Budget and Finance, Legal department, Finance, Budgeting and Accounting department, Parliament Studies department and other colleagues from subdivisions of the Parliament Secretariat. Overall, 25 participants attended the meeting to learn about the ongoing work on costing and discuss the importance of this work for the parliamentary legislative procedure.

Going forward, the Costing Guidance will be published as an official supporting document to be used by line ministries in estimation and budgeting of costs of PPD. The Project envisaged continuing the strong partnership and cooperation with the key stakeholders in order to further strengthen the capacities of Moldovan line ministries in this important topic.

The EU-funded project “Support for structured policy dialogue, coordination of the implementation of the Association Agreement and enhancement of the legal approximation process in the Republic of Moldova” aims at increasing the capacities of the Moldovan Government and other key national institutions in implementing the EU-Republic of Moldova Association Agreement.