11 May 2016

Augustinas Normantas3Lithuania, as a senior partner, together with Austria has won the European Union's Twinning project Implementation of the Best European Practices with the Aim of Strengthening the Institutional Capacity of the Apparatus of the Ukrainian Parliament Commissioner for Human Rights to Protect Human Rights and Freedoms (Apparatus), which will be implemented by a team of the best Lithuanian and Austrian human rights experts.

Under the leadership of the Seimas Ombudsman Augustinas Normantas the project will be implemented by well-known Lithuanian experts of legal science and practice representing the Law Institute of Lithuania, the Seimas Ombudsmen's Office of the Republic of Lithuania, the Office of Equal Opportunities Ombudsperson, the State Data Protection Inspectorate, and the Law Faculty of Vilnius University. Austria is represented in the Project by the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute of Human Rights. Administrative and financial management of this two-year project will be implemented by the Central Project Management Agency. The European Commission is providing EUR 1.5 million to the project.

Lithuania is actively involved in the EU Twinning Programme in Ukraine. Since 2010 Lithuanian authorities, together with partners from other EU countries, have been sharing their experience concerning judicial reform, land management and transport safety in Ukraine. In 2015, Lithuania has started providing support in the fields of sanitary and phytosanitary, competition and customs. This project has been the third won EU Twinning project in Ukraine this year. In 2016, Lithuania, together with Germany and Poland, is also starting a project for the improvement of state border management and together with Spain - assisting in application of European railway model.

The EU Twinning programme funded by the European Commission supports cooperation of related institutions of different countries, strengthens administrative capacity of countries beneficiaries as well as helps them to implement necessary reforms. Lithuania has been providing expertise assistance following EU Twinning programme since 2004 and has won 66 Twinning project selections amounting to nearly 55.5 million so far. Lithuania's experience in the EU Twinning Programme is ahead of many EU Member States achievements; moreover, the credibility, experience and expertise of Lithuanian institutions is increasingly valued by the beneficiary countries and between partners.

Source: press release issued by the Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Lithuania.