FAO.org

Home > Region_collector > Europe and Central Asia > Programmes and projects > TCP
FAO Regional Office for Europe and Central Asia

FAO’s Technical Cooperation Programme aims to help countries improve food security and alleviate poverty in a lasting way.

TCP projects assist in solving technical problems in crop production, livestock, fisheries and aquaculture, forestry, nutrition, food safety, rural development and other areas identified by the country concerned.

 

Technical Cooperation Programme

An important part of FAO’s Field Programme is the Technical Cooperation Programme – familiarly known as “TCP.” 

Since TCP is part of the Organization’s Regular Programme budget, funds for TCP projects come directly from the dues paid by FAO members.

TCP can be used for producing tangible and immediate results with catalytic effect, by supporting institutions, farmer associations and other entities as target beneficiaries – providing technical inputs such as short-term experts and consultants, short-term practical training, or equipment and supplies related to training.

The Programme may not be used for providing money to Governments, supporting research, repeating assistance already provided, supporting projects without major technical input from FAO, substituting for missing national capacities, or supporting existing experts and employees of the counterpart Ministry.

Project proposals are evaluated against 10 key criteria established by FAO’s Governing Bodies.

The TCP Criteria

1. Country eligibility

1. Country eligibility

Priority is given to the following "special attention" categories: (i) countries classified by FAO as low-income, food-deficit (LIFDC); and (ii) least-developed countries (LDC) landlocked developing countries (LLDC), and small-island developing states (SIDS), as classified by the UN Office of the High Representative for LDCs, LLDCs and SIDS. Middle-income economies as classified by the World Bank may also access TCP, but interventions should focus on provision of expertise and capacity building, rather than material input. High-income economies as classified by the World Bank may access TCP but only on a full cost-recovery basis.

2. Aims and purposes

2. Aims and purposes

TCP-supported assistance should contribute directly to at least one Organizational Result of FAO's Strategic Framework.

3. Country or regional priorities

3. Country or regional priorities

It would be impossible to address all of a country's development problems through the TCP. For this reason, TCP assistance should follow from a TCP priority-setting process at country level, and should contribute to one or more country priorities as expressed in the CPF.

4. Critical gap or problem

4. Critical gap or problem

Assistance to be funded through the TCP should aim at filling a technical gap in one or more of FAO's technical domains that no other entity can provide. Funds are not to be used to fill a financial gap of the government counterpart. Primary beneficiaries and other stakeholders should be clearly identified. Results-based management principles should be used to identify the critical gap, and in designing the TCP intervention to address it. The Logical Framework approach should be used for all TCP interventions, clearly identifying activities, outputs, outcomes and impact, measured by appropriate performance indicators and realistic objectives.

5. Sustainable impacts

5. Sustainable impacts

This is one of the most important criteria. TCP projects should have tangible outputs, leading to broader positive impact, particularly related to food security. If a TCP project supports the actions of the Govemment(s) or other resource partners, it is more likely to produce sustainable results. Projects where FAO acts in isolation are discouraged. TCP assistance should be used as a catalyst for change and as a tool for resource mobilization -attracting donor funding or co-financing arrangements.

6. Scale and duration

6. Scale and duration

No TCP project should require a budget of more than USD 500 000 Budgets should remain as low as possible, using the most cost-effective inputs available. A TCP project should be completed within 24 months. Projects should be designed to be realistically concluded within this timeframe.

7. Government commitment

7. Government commitment

Commitment on the part of the Government is a fundamental condition for proper project implementation and future sustainability. The government must commit to participating fully in project execution, providing the use of national institutions, personnel and resources such as staff, vehicles or training venues. A TCP project can promote concrete changes only if the government commits to proper follow-up. Each project should clearly explain how the counterparts will follow up project activities, to avoid stand-alone, dead-end initiatives.

8. Capacity-building

8. Capacity-building

Each TCP project should create a critical mass of knowledge and skills that did not exist before. During the course of project implementation, counterparts and stakeholders should acquire the skills and expertise to effectively use the project's outputs and results in the future. They should be able to replicate or scale up activities. The TCP can develop capacity at all levels - from individuals to institutions, from the policy and enabling environment to a wide range of beneficiaries such as farmers, government staff, or the staff of nongovernmental and civil society organizations.

9. Gender sensitivity

9. Gender sensitivity

Another essential criterion is gender sensitivity. All TCP projects should be formulated with the benefit of gender analysis, considering issues of sex, age, ethnicity, social class, geographical location and all factors that influence the roles and responsibilities of men and women benefiting directly or indirectly from the project.

10. Partnership and participation

10. Partnership and participation

It is important that the main stakeholders of TCP assistance are identified as early as possible and involved in design and implementation of the project. This promotes ownership and builds dynamism between the different parties concerned, which should continue after the project. By participating in key decision-making processes, project stakeholders are empowered.

TCP Management

For each member country, a TCP Coordinator manages the country programme and approves TCP projects. In Europe and Central Asia, the TCP Coordinator role is performed:

  • by FAO Representatives for national projects,
  • by the Deputy Regional Representative and the Subregional Coordinator for Central Asia for subregional projects in respective subregions,
  • by the Deputy Regional Representative and the Subregional Coordinator for Central Asia for national projects in countries with no FAO Representative, and
  • by the Regional Representative for regional projects.