The responsibility for implementation of the TACIS programmes - and the follow-on programmes of the Instrument for Nuclear Safety Cooperation (INSC) - lies with a Directorate General of the European Commission. Over time this has changed from DGIA through SCR and then DG AIDCO (EuropeAid Cooperation Office). In carrying out this responsibility, the regulations covering the implementation of the instruments allow for Community financing to cover expenditure associated with various kinds of assistance for the preparation, follow up, monitoring, auditing and evaluation activities directly necessary for the implementation of the programmes and the achievement of their objectives. This may include, for example, studies, meetings, information, awareness-raising, training and publication activities and any other administrative or technical assistance that the Commission may require for the management of the programmes.
Due to its status as a DG of the European Commission, DG-JRC is able to provide DG-AIDCO with scientific and technical advice in support of programme implementation that is completely independent and free from any commercial interests. This support is complementary to various other support mechanisms such as the on-site Consultants at NPPs, the Regulatory Authorities Management Group (RAMG), OSA Peer Group and dedicated support Consultants contracted by the Commission, all of which together provide the elements that allow programme and project preparation to proceed in a quick and effective manner, project tendering and contracting to be carried out efficiently and successfully and problems arising during project implementation to be managed and solved effectively.
In the framework of the TACIS 2002 programme, the Commission decided to continue and extend the services entrusted to DG JRC for the provision of professional support to the implementation of the TACIS programmes. These services concerned the provision of expertise, know-how and other forms of technical assistance for the preparation and implementation of the nuclear safety projects in the areas of design safety (DS), off-site emergency preparedness (OSEP) and simulators.
The objective of this contract was the provision of technical support to EC DG AIDCO for the implementation of TACIS and INSC projects in the area of DS, OSEP and simulators.
The specific tasks to be executed by JRC/IE under the present contract were as follows:
Task 1: Assistance in preparing the technical basis of the strategic planning and the appropriate selection of the projects by AIDCO
This task involved the provision of technical assistance and advice for the preparatory work for the strategic planning of the TACIS and INSC programmes.
Task 2: Preparation of Project Description Sheets (PDS) for inclusion in an annual programme
This task involved the review and improvement of project proposals submitted by Beneficiaries for a given annual programme in terms of their implementation potential under the rules and procedures in force and the political priorities defined in the Multi-Annual Indicative Programmes, as well as their technical consistency and relevance to nuclear safety.
Task 3: Drafting/Reviewing Terms of Reference (ToR) and Criteria for the evaluation of offers
Under this task, JRC was responsible for drafting/reviewing of ToRs of programmed Design Safety/OSEP projects. This work had to be performed in close coordination with the Beneficiary and in consultation with the AIDCO Project Managers. Specific contacts/meetings with the Beneficiary technical staff and the leading institutes in the beneficiary countries were important to correctly establish the technical content of the ToRs.
This task also consisted of reviewing and accepting the Technical Specifications for equipment supply projects or work projects in the area of Design Safety/OSEP, in terms of technical consistency, quality and neutrality.
In addition, the JRC was responsible for drafting/reviewing the Evaluation Criteria documents for the evaluation of open tenders.
The task also included, more generally, the provision of technical and scientific assistance to AIDCO in the planning and preparation of TACIS nuclear safety projects.
Task 4: Participation in Tender evaluations
This task included the participation in tender evaluation committees for open tenders for Design Safety/OSEP projects, and the analysis of the technical part of offers necessary to conclude direct agreements.
Task 5: Technical follow-up of on-going projects
Due to the complexity of the nuclear safety projects, AIDCO requires technical and scientific assistance for the management of projects in order to ensure that the projects are implemented in a timely manner and completion is not jeopardised due to technical obstacles.
This task consisted of providing technical and scientific support as required by AIDCO to ensure project implementation is not hampered by technical or scientific obstacles and/or complications. In addition, JRC would provide the necessary support to AIDCO should disputes or disagreements arise concerning technical issues within the project implementation phase.
Task 6: Technical assessment of project results
Under this task, JRC was requested to provide AIDCO with technical and scientific assessments of reports/deliverables produced during the execution of the TACIS/INSC Design Safety/OSEP projects.
The assessments had to cover at least the following aspects:
- Compliance of project with technical requirements of the ToR,
- Technical adequacy of methods used,
- Consistency with approaches adopted in related projects.
Any shortcomings had to be clearly identified as well as areas needing clarification, explanation, or further action.
Task 7: Contribution to the dissemination of the project results
JRC was required to summarise the objectives and achievements of completed Design Safety/OSEP projects, in both English and Russian languages, in a form suitable for publication on the dissemination Web site hosted by JRC.
Task 8: Participation on specific missions to be conducted by AIDCO
Under this task it was envisaged that JRC could be requested by AIDCO to provide expertise and technical assistance to AIDCO project managers on their missions to beneficiary countries for meetings with the local programme and project stakeholders.
The contract was signed on 29 October 2003, initially for a period of three years. It was extended by DG AIDCO and had a final duration of five years.
The work was performed in accordance with the above objectives. JRC activities covered all the tasks listed above. A large number of ToRs were written or reviewed during the period of the contract which represented a large part of the work. Other major aspects of the work were the technical assessment of project results and the review of project descriptions for a large number of projects, as well as participation in tender evaluations.