The Support to the Association Agreement Programme (SAAP) operates within the context of the EU-Egypt Association Agreement and its Action Plan. Operated by the Egyptian Ministry of Investment and International Cooperation and funded by the EU, the role of SAAP is to coordinate, facilitate, coach and monitor projects undertaken by the Egyptian Public Administration through the use of relevant institutional building instruments. To this end, SAAP works to ensure that all available instruments are efficiently and effectively utilised for the pursuit and enhancement of EU-Egyptian relations.
SAAP receives requests from interested public sector institutions. In checking the relevance of the requests to the available capacity building instruments, SAAP takes into account a number of factors:
- The submitted request is in line with Egypt’s national priorities;
- The submitted request meets one of the priorities identified in the EU- Egypt Association Agreement and the joint Action Plan.
it is worth mentioning that throughout the lifetime of the projects launched, the Egyptian Ministry of International Cooperation, through SAAP, works in close cooperation with the European Union delegation in Cairo. Partners join forces to ensure that the preparation and implementation of the portfolio of projects serves and is in line with Egyptian government priorities.
SAAP is responsible for the coordination of and support to all kinds of projects implemented within the framework of the EU-Egypt Association Agreement and the Action Plan. In this context, SAAP is entitled to introduce and utilise a versatile institutional capacity building toolbox including, in particular, Institutional Twinning and Technical Assistance.
SAAP also acts as the national contact point (NCP) for other instruments that are being introduced and offered within the framework of the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) as part of the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI) inter-regional programme.
These include the Technical Assistance and Information Exchange Instrument (TAIEX), and the Support for Improvement in Governance and Management (SIGMA).
Although such instruments have separate funding mechanisms from those operated and managed by SAAP, nevertheless, acting as the national contact point SAAP is responsible for following up implementation and enhancing synergies and complementarities between all the available instruments. In this way, a single institution may benefit from a number of tools according to the rationale of intervention.
Moreover, complementarity also allows us to capitalise on past and ongoing efforts, whether by local or development partners within the same sector, in order to avoid duplication of effort and waste of resources.
With a budget of more than €62 million provided by the European Union, the Support to the Association Agreement Programme offers a diversified toolbox for institutional capacity building and technical assistance for Egyptian government institutions.
Until now SAAP has successfully served more than 130 government institutions raising their institutional capacities and paving the way for the adoption of European Union best practice and experience.