GIZ in the EU member states

The European Union (EU) is one of the world’s most highly developed economic areas. However, there are significant economic differences between the individual member states. The extent to which they are ready to face the great challenges of the 21st century, such as climate change, digitalisation and migration, also differs among the EU member states.

Continuous reforms with a view to establishing modern structures are necessary to promote sustainable development and to enhance the competitiveness of the EU as a whole. In recent years, the European Commission and the member states have therefore agreed that these kinds of reform processes should be supported by suitable instruments at EU level.

GIZ has already been cooperating with the EU member states since it was founded in 2011. It has supported long-term, extensive reform measures in many of these countries, including measures carried out in preparation for accession to the EU.

Implementation of projects by GIZ in EU member states

Professional and sustainable implementation of structural reforms in EU member states is in the interests both of the EU Commission and the German Government. Providing support for complex reform processes, working at a political level and developing national capacity are some of GIZ’s core competences. In the context of direct orders, GIZ can implement projects in the EU for all its commissioning parties.

In recent years, GIZ has implemented a range of projects on behalf of the German Government and with co-financing from the EU to promote structural reforms in various sectors and in different EU member states.

On behalf of the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU), GIZ has provided advice to the Greek Government on topics related to waste, for example. These advisory services focused on implementing EU directives and revising the national waste management plan. On behalf of the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi), GIZ has assisted Croatia in introducing appropriate processes to assess the impact of laws and to reduce the administrative work and costs involved for citizens and companies.

Prospects for cooperation with EU member states

Sustainable development in the member states promotes cohesion within the EU and increases its resilience to crises. However, many member states do not have sufficient resources or capacity to establish appropriate framework conditions. Structural reforms are becoming increasingly complex and demanding. At the same time, there is considerable potential for sharing lessons learned with other EU member states that face similar challenges. With its international network and wide range of formats, GIZ brings together actors from Germany and Europe to facilitate sustainable knowledge transfer.

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