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Simplified Cost Options: improving programme implementation and reimbursements

September 12-14, 2018, Hilton Malta Hotel

Price: EUR 1,699 (incl VAT)


Register by 22 August and pay EUR 1,499

 

Course Description

Value for money. Accessible funds. Simplicity. Results.

The call for more straightforward and effective regulations and policies has accompanied the 2014-20 Programmes from the outset. Incessant pressures from sluggish economic growth, high unemployment rates, a larger EU, high error rates and much more have led European leaders to stop the buck and truly focus on what matters most – results that make the difference in people’s lives.

In the 2014-20 period, the role of Simplified Cost Options is being taken to a higher level, where the European Parliament and the European Court of Auditors are considering them as highly effective solutions to excessive paperwork, delays in decision-making, complex monitoring and verification of processes. But they still come with strings attached.

Shifting to SCOs creates a culture shock that shakes systems into more flexibility and less rigidity. It redefines the roles of all stakeholders in the field, who need to be trained well to trust the new systems and apply them correctly.

This course explains all the simplified cost options available, with practical examples which clearly define the differences between SCOs and the classical view of real-cost reimbursement. We explore the pros and cons of each option and discuss how they truly contribute towards better results from our operational programmes.

 

 

Course Highlights

i. Overview of the principles and foundations of SCOs;

ii. Analysing in detail how each Simplified Cost Option contributes to improve implementation under different conditions and all ESI Funds;

iii. Assessing how management verifications are carried out on SCOs;

iv. Understanding how SCOs may simplify the certification and reimbursement process;

v. Observing good-practice examples in the application of SCO across different Member States and different Funds, not only ESIF;

vi. Analysing how SCOs help in reducing the classical errors and therefore lowering the error rate;

vii. Learning the role SCOs have in the context of the Performance Framework and Reserve;

viii. Understanding the auditor’s perspective in the SCO systems;

ix. Appreciating the culture shock created by SCOs.

 

 

Target Audience
Managing Authorities, First Level of Control Bodies, Intermediate Bodies, Certifying Authorities, Audit Authorities, Central Coordination Bodies, Methodology Departments, Central or Regional Ministries, officers/managers dealing with State Aid and Public Procurement.

 

 

One-day EUfundingGOZO expedition included

We take the theme over to Gozo for a one-day expedition to discuss prevention, detection and reporting in the context of the projects implemented on the island of Gozo throughout the 2004-06 and 2007-13 programming periods.  The course theme is coupled with visits to ERDF, CF and LIFE projects scattered across Gozo, starting from the Cirkewwa Ferry Terminal, crossing to the Zewwieqa Waterfront in Mgarr, up to the Ggantija Temples in Xaghra, visiting projects in Victoria, and finishing off in Dwejra to discuss the LIFE project.  

This is a great opportunity to feel the difference EU funding has made to the small Island of Gozo over the last 10 years and at the same time understand the underlying technicalities that occurred ‘behind-the-scenes’.   

 


Want to know more? 

 

 
Our Trainers

Ray Bartolo
Director - Speaker

  • Ten years of practical experience in the management and control of European Funds
  • Involved in the implementation and closure process of the Maltese 2004-06 Structural and Cohesion Funds Programme
  • Contributed significantly towards the setting up of the financial management and control systems of the ERDF, CF and ESF Operational Programmes for the 2007-2013 Programming Period
  • Responsible for the implementation of the ERDF and CF Operational Programmes for health, transport, education, urban regeneration and technical assistance
  • Served as National Expert and Coordinator on the CEF coordination committee for transport, Environment and the Telecommunications sectors
  • Prepared Procurement Manuals for a number of Maltese Government entities
  • Drafted and evaluated different types of procurement procedures, including concession contracts
  • Provided strategic guidance and project management services to various beneficiaries of EU-Funding
  • Leading role in the design and approval process of Major Projects
  • Delivered several training sessions and seminars on financial, programme management and public procurement to participants coming from MA, CA, AA, IBs, Beneficiaries, and other stakeholders from all around Europe
  • Masters graduate in Public Policy from the University of Malta

 

Trevor Fenech
Director – Speaker

  • Former Senior Manager at the Managing Authority for Structural and Cohesion funds
  • Past experience in ERDF, ESF, CF, EAGGF and FIFG programmes
  • Strongly involved in the design, implementation and monitoring of the management and control systems for the 04-06 and 07-13 financial periods, including eligibility rules, financial reporting to Management, the European Commission and the Monitoring Committee, management verifications, audits, financial corrections, and internal procedures
  • Carried out the closure process of the 04-06 Single Programming Document (SPD)
  • Delivered several presentations in the field of financial management of EU funds to the MA, CA, AA, IBs, Beneficiaries and TAIEX Beneficiaries
  • Engaged in major audit missions carried out by the EC, ECA and OLAF
  • Former nations delegate to the ESF Committee (Treaty of the Functioning of the EU, Art. 163).
  • Providing expert advise to the Maltese Government on PPPs and the conduct of the Competitive Dialogue procedure
  • Managing successfully a number of EU-funded projects
  • Masters graduate in Financial Management and Economics from the University of London

  

Justine Schinas
Senior Advisor – Expedition

  • Worked for the Managing Authority for Structural and Cohesion Fund since 2009
  • Experience on all Cohesion Policy funds being the ERDF, CF and ESF
  • Assisted in the closure of the 2004-2006 programme
  • Provided technical guidance to MA officials with regards to the implementation of EU Funded projects.
  • Carried out numerous verification and physical project checks, identified financial corrections and was involved in the setting up of operating procedures within the MA.
  • Highly involved in an audit missions carried out by the European Commission
  • Participated in Monitoring Committees, delivered presentations/training to stakeholders and MA officials, and participated in research work and compilation of data, particularly with regards to absorption issues.
  • Managed the implementation of large projects with budgets of close to fifty million.
  • Worked on the Technical Assistance (TA) Fund and was tasked with the role of TA Manager whereby she oversaw a team of officers working on this fund.
  • Responsible for a number of procurement procedures within the MA where she issued call for quotations and tenders. She also formed part of numerous evaluation committees.
  • Masters in Business Administration from the University of Malta

 

 
Venue & Accommodation

Training Venue
Hilton Hotel – Portomaso St. Julian’s

The training course will take place at the Hilton Hotel - Malta, a 5-star luxurious hotel, in St. Julian's. Accommodation can be provided at the Hilton Hotel itself and other hotels in the vicinity.

Below please find special corporate prices for our participants.

 

Hotel
Price

Westin Hotel
EUR 250**

Hilton Hotel
EUR 200*

Intercontinental Hotel
EUR na*

Hotel Valentina
EUR 130**

Hotel Argento
EUR 140**

Cavalieri Art Hotel
EUR 95**

Golden Tulip Vivaldi
EUR 95**

* room only basis
** bed and breakfast basis

How to benefit from Hotels’ corporate rates

NB. Always keep This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. in copy.


Westin Hotel – send an e-mail to Margaret at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and refer to EuropeanFunds.info in your e-mail.

Hilton Malta – send an e-mail to Stephanie at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and refer to EuropeanFunds.info in your e-mail.

Intercontinental Hotel – send an e-mail to Gordon at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and refer to EuropeanFunds.info in your e-mail.

Valentina Hotel – Log on to www.hotelvalentina.com and enter the EUFUNDS promo code

Hotel Argento – send an e-mail to Fabrizio at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and refer to EuropeanFunds.info in your e-mail.

Cavalieri Art Hotel – send an e-mail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and refer to EuropeanFunds.info in your e-mail.

Golden Tulip Vivaldi – send an e-mail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and refer to EuropeanFunds.info in your e-mail. 

 

 
 

Useful Information

St Julians

How to get around

Upon arriving at the Malta International Airport, you can get to St. Julian's by catching a taxi or the public transport system (Bus number X2 which runs from 05550hrs till 2250hrs). Buses are quite frequent to St. Julian's.

If you are staying outside of St. Julian's, reaching the training venue is quite easy. The bus stops just further down the road from the Westin Dragonara Resort, which is only 5 minutes away.

 

Weather?

Weather in Malta

Malta has a typical Mediterranean climate with mild winters and warm to hot summers. THe warm season generally starts in Mid-April and ends in September with an average temperature of 20 degrees. Temperatures are between 20 to 30 degrees in July and August.

 

Food?

Local Cuisine

While the island offers a variety of culinary choices, one must not miss the opportunity to try some local, tasty dishes: the Lampuki Pie (fish pie), rabbit stew, Bragioli (beef olives), Kapunata, (Maltese version of ratatouile), and widow's soup. The Gbejniet (sheep or goat's cheese) and Bigilla, a thick pate of broad beans with garlic are an ideal started for your meal.

Don't leave Malta without trying the traditional 'pastizzi'which are flaky parcels filled with ricotta or mushed peas. Some fouvrite dessert delicacies are kannoli and the Helwa tat-Tork.

You should also try out some of our local wines, our local beer and "Kinnie", our local soft drink.

 

 

 

 

Upcoming Courses in 2018

 
Agenda

Day 1 - Wednesday 12 September 2018

0830-0900
Registration and distribution of training material
0900-0930
Introduction – Setting the objectives and expected outcomes
0930-1030
Reflections on the traditional Management and Control Systems across Member States The sessions kick off with a discussion on the evolution of management and control systems between the previous and current programming periods.  The general case study (to be completed by participants at the end of the course) will also be presented here.
1030-1100
Coffee Break
1100-1145
The Principles and Regulations of SCOs The guiding principles and essential regulations are introduced here, laying the foundations for application of SCOs in the management of programmes and projects.
1145-1230
SCO#1 – Flat Rate Financing: An explanation This session explores flat-rate financing and all its variants through practical examples and multiple perspectives from all ESI Funds – implementation, reimbursement to the Beneficiary, verification and certification to the EC.
1230-1400
Lunch
1400-1445
SCO#1 – Flat Rate Financing: Workshop A set of cases is presented for individual or group work.
1445-1530
SCO#2 – Standard Scales of Unit Costs: An explanation An in-depth analysis of standard scales of unit costs, once more through practical examples and from different perspectives – implementation, reimbursement to the Beneficiary, verification, certification to the EC and reimbursement from the EC. Includes special reference to the ESF Regulation, Article 14.
1530-1545
Coffee Break
1545-1645
SCO#2 – Standard Scales of Unit Costs: Workshop A set of cases is presented for individual or group work.
1645-1700
Concluding remarks and wrap-up of Day 1




Day 2 - Thursday 13 September 2018

0830-0900
Welcome coffee
0900-0945
Simplified Cost Options – firefighting the error rate SCOs are considered an effective tool to drive down error rates, according to audit reports of EU and national institutions.  What are these errors and how will SCOs contribute (if any) to reducing errors.
0945-1030
SCO#3 – Lump Sums: An explanation This session explains lump sums and their application, together with an overview from all perspectives (incl. Article 14, ESF)
1030-1100
Coffee break
1100-1130
SCO#3 – Lump Sums: Workshop A set of cases is presented for individual or group work.
1130-1200
Case Studies: The application of SCOs in Malta and in other Member States, past and present Several good-practice cases from across the EU and from different Funds are presented for observation and discussion.
1200-1230
Certifying SCOs and their reimbursement from the EC Here we summarise all the implications of SCOs on the certification process, with a special mention of the possible reimbursement possibilities available in the hands of the European Commission.
1230-1400
Lunch
1400-1445
Meeting the programme targets: SCOs in the context of the Performance Framework This session analyses the relationship between the Performance Framework and SCOs.  How will a simplified approach aid in delivering results which are relevant to the Performance Framework and Reserve?
1445-1530
The General Workshop Participants are invited to study a general case study and suggest SCOs to apply for the simplification of the project implementation and reimbursement. 
1530-1645
The Auditing perspective of SCOs (incl. questions to the Auditor) Understanding the perspective of the auditor is essential in placing trust in the SCO systems.  Using the cases and exercises presented above, we explore the typical approach adopted by an auditor
1645-1700
Concluding remarks and wrap-up of Day 2



Day 3 - Friday 14 September 2018 - EUfundingGozo Projects Expedition

Stop1
CF 198 - Cirkewwa || Ferry Terminal
Stop2
ERDF 31 - Zewwieqa Waterfront || Mgarr
Stop3
ERDF 32 - Ggantija Temples
Stop4
discussing ERDF 24 - Villa Rundle Gardesn & CF1.1.0.2 - Mgarr-Victoria link
Stop5
ERDF 142 - Eco Museum|| Victoria
Stop6
ERDF 246 - Cittadella Masterplan
Stop7
ERDF 140 - Ta' Pinu Basilica
Stop8
LIFE - Coastal Nature Reserve || Dwejra

September 12-14 || One-day EUfundingGOZO expedition included!


This course explains all the simplified cost options available, with practical examples which clearly define the differences between SCOs and the classical view of real-cost reimbursement. We explore the pros and cons of each option and discuss how they truly contribute towards better results.

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Practical and comprehensive courses on EU Funds management and control based on first-hand experience, research and insight. They will expose the important features of the course theme, through practical, real-world examples, in a set-up that facilitates the free exchange of ideas.   {marcoparallaxbground height="300" image="IPH_0148.jpg"}             February 2018   February 14-16 || Fighting fraud & corruption in EU funded projects One-day EUfundingMalta expedition included! This course explores the realities of fraud and corruption in EU-funded projects and looks at the new solutions available in the hands of Member States to fight fraudulent activities.   March 2018   March 21-23 || Verifying & Certifying ESIF projects in 2014-2020 One-day EUfundingMalta expedition included! Straight-to-the-point facts and methods to improve the verification and certification of ESI-funded projects, based on the latest reports and guidelines.   April 2018   5-day seminar April 16-20 || ESF toolkit: Focus on SCO, Financial Instruments & the quality of public administration One-day EUfundingMalta expedition included! This five-day seminar reaches out to all practitioners involved in the European Social Fund, to discuss all the technical matters that make ESF the catalyst for education, employment and social inclusion in the EU.    May 2018   May 16-18 || Indicators & the performance framework: result-based management for 2014-2020? One-day EUfundingGozo expedition included! The workshop which speaks about anything meaningful to the efficient and effective delivery, monitoring and evaluation of ESI-funded programmes and projects.   June 2018   June 18-20 || State aid & procurement in infrastructural projects One-day EUfundingGozo expedition included! A three-day informative seminar which puts light on the complex subjects of state-aid and public procurement surrounding infrastructural projects. This training course is ideal for project implementers and verifiers.   July 2018   5-day seminar July 16-20 || Financial Management toolkit: carrying out administrative and on-the-spot verifications One-day EUfundingGozo expedition included! A five-day series of workshops and intensive sessions addressing the main features of financial management and control of ESI Funds, carefully built on the right blend of theory and practice.   September 2018   September 12-14 || Simplified Cost Options: improving programme implementation and reimbursements One-day EUfundingGozo expedition included! This course explains all the SCOc available, with practical examples which clearly define the differences between SCOs and the classical view of real-cost reimbursement. We explore each option and discuss how they truly contribute towards better results.   October 2018   October 10-12|| The Most Common Errors: Simpler ways to keep them low One-day EUfundingMalta expedition included! This seminar sheds light on how the newest Regulations, Directives and simplification measures coincide to lower the error rates in EU-funded programmes. This is ideal for practitioners in MAs, IBs, CAs and AAs and project managers.   November 2018   November 7-9 || Financial Corrections Workshop: Procurement, Financial Instruments & other errors One-day EUfundingMalta expedition included! A set of workshops designed to instil confidence in the personal interpretation of errors and the application of knowledge and experience to determine fair financial corrections.     December 2018   5-day seminar December 3-7 || Irregularities toolkit: how to prevent, detect & treat errors One-day EUfundingMalta expedition included! This 5-day toolkit deals with anything you need to know on irregularities; from prevention to detection, all the way to treatment of irregularities. It is ideal for EU-funding practitioners across all stakeholders.     For more information about our courses Subscribe to ENews.  

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About Us

The European Union wants results.  EuropeanFunds.info is just about them.

We provide training and other optimal solutions on the back of experience gained in the management of the 2004-2006, 2007-2013 and 2014-2020 EU funded programmes at the Managing Authority of Malta. Our experts were directly involved in operational programme development, final programme closure reporting and (pretty much) anything in between!

2014-2020 is about performance.  Indeed, we are here to share our knowledge on EU funding and help you perform.

Our Team

Ray Bartolo

Ray Bartolo is Director and Lead Consultant at EuropeanFunds.info.

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Trevor Fenech

Trevor Fenech is Director and Lead Consultant at EuropeanFunds.info.

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Justine Schinas

Justine Schinas is a Senior Advisor and Speaker at EuropeanFunds.info.

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About Malta

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Whether on business or vacation, Malta offers a rich concentration of natural beauty, cultural legacy, vibrant entertainment, friendly faces and top-end facilities.   The country stretches just over 300km2, covering the three main inhabited islands, with the largest – Malta – lying to the south of the smaller islands of Gozo and Comino.  The population is 418,000 and the official languages are Maltese and English.  The capital city is Valletta.

The wealth of historical sites (including nine UNESCO World Heritage Sites), cultural activities, its warm climate, recreational areas, beaches, and architectural diversity, make Malta a popular tourist destination.  It also offers a stable political, economic and industrial environment, hosting thousands of local and international companies in different sectors, mainly tourism, financial services, IT, manufacturing and retail.  EU membership and the adoption of the euro currency have enhanced Malta’s accessibility and attractiveness as an international business hub in the centre of the Mediterranean region.

For more information about Malta, visit www.visitmalta.com.

Malta and European Funds

Malta joined the European Union on 1st May 2004.  Since 2000, the Government of Malta has been actively participating in EU-funded programmes under shared management with the European Commission.  Malta has received in excess of €1bn from the EU under the various initiatives undertaken so far, both pre- and post-accession, including Pre-Accession Funds and the Transition Facility (inc. TAIEX), the Structural Funds Programme 2004-06 (ERDF, ESF, EAGGF, FIFG) and the Cohesion Fund 2004-06, Cohesion Policy 2007-13 (ERDF, CF, ESF), the Rural Development and Agriculture funds (EAGF/EAFRD), The European Fisheries Fund (EFF), Framework Programme on Solidarity and management of Migration funds 2007-2013 and the Lifelong Learning and Youth-in-Action Programmes,

Another €882m are allocated to Malta under the 2014-2020 Multi-annual Financial Framework (Cohesion Policy, Common Agricultural Policy and European Maritime and Fisheries Fund. Source: ec.europa.eu).

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Address: ef.Info Ltd.
Level 2, Palazzo Ca' Brugnera,
Valley Road, BKR 9024, Birkirkara,
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Contact Nos:

+356 99457484, +356 99203328