EU, Eurostat

The EU provides financial assistance to candidate countries and potential candidates and helps them reform and adapt their institutions and legislations. Financial assistance takes the form of projects on the ground following phases of programming and contracting.

The Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA) is the main tool used by the Commission to provide give financial and technical support to reforms in the enlargement countries. Throughout the process leading to accession, the funds help the implementation of much needed reforms and build up the capacities of the countries. The funds' impact is gradual, reflecting in the positive developments in the region.

IPA has been designed to achieve even better results with the resources we have available. It helps candidate countries to fully implement the EU legislation ("Community acquis") by the time they become Member States. For potential candidates, the key is that they progressively align themselves with the EU legislation.

Since 2007, the enlargement countries have received EU funding and support through this single channel. The total pre-accession financing for 2007-2013 is € 11.5 billion.

IPA replaces the five previous EU instruments for pre-accession – Phare, ISPA, SAPARD, the Turkey programme, and CARDS.
There are two types of IPA projects: