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Document 52019DC0174


COM/2019/174 final

Brussels, 10.4.2019

COM(2019) 174 final


Third Annual Report on the Facility for Refugees in Turkey

Table of Contents

1.    Introduction    

1.1 Turkey and the refugee crisis    

1.2 The EU response to the crisis and the establishment of the Facility    

2.    The functioning of the Facility    

3.    Financial capacity, duration and nature of funding    

4.    The second tranche of the Facility    


5.    Implementation of the Facility    

5.1 Humanitarian assistance    

5.2 Development assistance    

6.    Monitoring & Evaluation    

7.    Audit    

8.    Communication and visibility    

9.    Conclusion and next steps    


In accordance with Article 8 (1) of the Commission Decision of 24 November 2015 1 on the coordination of the actions of the Union and of the Member States through a coordination mechanism ("the Decision"), the Commission shall keep the European Parliament and the Council regularly informed about the implementation of the Facility for Refugees in Turkey (hereinafter 'the Facility'). Article 8 (2) of the Decision provides that the Commission shall report annually to the European Parliament and to the Council on the implementation of the Facility. The first Annual Report on the Facility was published in March 2017 2 . It described the functioning of the Facility, the first actions undertaken in view of its implementation, monitoring, the evaluation system, as well as related communication activities. The second report was published in March 2018 3 .

1.1 Turkey and the refugee crisis

Due to its geographic position Turkey is a prominent reception and transit country for refugees and migrants. As a result of an unprecedented number of people arriving in Turkey mainly due to the conflicts in Syria and Iraq, the country has been hosting over 4 million refugees and migrants, the highest number in the world. This includes 3.6 million registered Syrian refugees 4 , of whom around 155 000 reside in thirteen camps established by the Turkish government, and more than 296 000 registered refugees and asylum seekers mainly from Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran and Somalia 5 . While Turkey continues to make commendable efforts in receiving, supporting and hosting high numbers of refugees and migrants, these numbers have had a significant impact on the host communities.

1.2 The EU response to the crisis and the establishment of the Facility

In 2015, the European Union and its Member States decided to step up their political and financial engagement to support Turkey in its efforts to host refugees. A comprehensive cooperation based on shared responsibility, mutual commitments and delivery between the European Union and Turkey was agreed within the framework of the 18 March 2016 EU-Turkey Statement 6 (hereafter 'the Statement'). The meeting of Heads of State or Government with Turkey on 29 November 2015 activated the EU-Turkey Joint Action Plan 7 to help Turkey address the consequences of the Syria conflict.

In response to the call from EU Member States for significant additional funding to support refugees in Turkey, the Commission established on 24 November 2015 the Facility for Refugees in Turkey 8 . The Facility is a mechanism that coordinates the mobilisation of resources made available under both the EU budget, and additional contributions from Member States integrated into the EU budget as external assigned revenue. Contributions amount to a total of EUR 6 billion, with EUR 3 billion committed for the years 2016-2017 and a further EUR 3 billion committed for 2018-2019. Since 2011, the EU and Member States mobilised collectively almost EUR 10.4 billion in response to the Syrian crisis; of which EUR 4.8 billion from the EU Budget.

The Facility complements and scales up existing EU funding under the EU Regional Trust Fund in Response to the Syrian Crisis 9 (EU Trust Fund), the Instrument contributing to Stability and Peace, and the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance national programmes, all of which have contributed to the work on refugee-related matters with key partners. It also complements the European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights 10 .

The implementation of the Statement continued to play a key role in the course of 2018 in ensuring that the migration challenge is addressed effectively and jointly by the EU and Turkey. The Statement continues to deliver concrete results in reducing irregular and dangerous crossings and in saving lives in the Aegean Sea.

In 2018, the total number of arrivals from Turkey into the EU was 50 789, compared to 41 720 arrivals in 2017 (a 22% increase). This included 47 939 arrivals to Greece (of which 32 141 by sea and 15 798 by land), 2 383 to Italy, 349 to Bulgaria, and 118 arrivals from Turkey by boat to the government-controlled areas of Cyprus. The total number of arrivals from Turkey into the EU in 2019 (as of 5 March 2019) is 5 094, compared to 3 153 arrivals in the same period last year. This includes 5 054 arrivals to Greece (3 509 by sea and 1 545 by land) and 40 to Bulgaria. 11 . According to the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), 3 migrants have so far lost their life in the Eastern Mediterranean in 2019 (174 persons lost their lives in whole 2018, 62 in 2017 and 434 in 2016).

Resettlements from Turkey to the EU under the one-for-one arrangement 12 foreseen in the Statement continues. The total number of resettlements since 4 April 2016 reached 20 002, of which 1 362 in 2019, 6 929 in 2018 and 8 975 in 2017. As for the Voluntary Humanitarian Admissions Scheme, further to the endorsement of the Standard Operating Procedures in December 2017, all elements and conditions are now in place for the activation of the Scheme, as set out in the Statement.

The full and sustained implementation of the Statement requires continuous efforts and political determination from all sides. 

2.The functioning of the Facility 

The Facility is a coordination mechanism that allows for the swift, effective and efficient mobilisation of EU assistance to refugees in Turkey. The Facility ensures the optimal mobilisation of existing EU financing instruments, either as humanitarian or development assistance, to address the needs of refugees and host communities in a comprehensive and coordinated manner 13 .

The Steering Committee of the Facility provides strategic guidance on the priorities, the type of actions to be supported, the amounts to be allocated and the financing instruments to be mobilised and, when appropriate, on the conditions relating to the implementation by Turkey of its commitments under the EU-Turkey Joint Action Plan of 29 November 2015 14 (hereafter the ‘Joint Action Plan’). In 2018, the third year of implementation of the Facility, three Steering Committee meetings took place, on 9 March, 18 June and 30 November 2018. The next (12th) Steering Committee meeting is planned for May 2019.

The key principles guiding the Facility's implementation are speed, efficiency and effectiveness, while ensuring sound financial management. Sustainability of Facility interventions and co-ownership by the Turkish authorities are also important. The identification of priority areas for assistance is based on a comprehensive and independent needs assessment 15 , paying particular attention to vulnerable groups. The needs assessment was updated in 2018 16 .

The Facility coordinates financing from the following external financing instruments: humanitarian aid 17 , the European Neighbourhood Instrument 18 , the Development Cooperation Instrument 19 , the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance 20 and the Instrument contributing to Stability and Peace 21 . Measures financed by the Union's budget are implemented in accordance with its financial rules and regulations applicable to both direct and indirect management.

Under the first tranche of the Facility, the breakdown of funding per EU instrument 22 is as follows:

Implementation of assistance is conditional upon strict compliance of Turkey with the undertakings of the Joint Action Plan, and the Statement.

3.Financial capacity, duration and nature of funding 

The total budget coordinated by the Facility is EUR 6 billion (EUR 3 billion for the period 2016-2017 and EUR 3 billion for the period 2018-2019). The first tranche, mobilised EUR 1 billion from the EU budget, and EUR 2 billion from the Member States 23 . For the second tranche, the EU budget provides EUR 2 billion and the Member States EUR 1 billion 24 .

Of the EUR 1 billion from the EU budget for 2016-2017, EUR 250 million was mobilised in 2016 and EUR 750 million in 2017. Of the EUR 2 billion from the EU budget for 2018, EUR 550 million was mobilised in 2018, with the balance to be mobilised in 2019.

For the first tranche, Member States contributed EUR 677 million to the Facility in 2016 and, 847 million in 2017 and EUR 396 million in 2018. The remaining EUR 80 million will be paid in 2019. For the second tranche, Member States contributed EUR 68 million in 2018, with the remaining payments planned for 2019-2023. Member States' contributions are made directly to the EU General Budget in the form of external assigned revenue pursuant to Article 21(2)(a)(ii) of the Financial Regulation and assigned to the budget lines of the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance and humanitarian aid.

A satisfactory match between the rate of Member States' payments of their contributions into the Facility and the rate of disbursements financed by those contributions from the Facility continues.

4.The second tranche of the Facility

The mobilisation of the first tranche of the Facility has been a success, with EUR 3 billion under the 2016 and 2017 budgets contracted 25 and fully operational by the end of 2017. The March 2016 EU-Turkey Statement indicated that once these resources were about to be used to the full, and provided all commitments were met, the EU would mobilise additional funding for the Facility of an additional EUR 3 billion up to the end of 2018.

Given that the first EUR 3 billion had been fully contracted at the end of 2017 and with a view to ensure the continuity of Facility projects and uninterrupted support to refugees, the Commission, in March 2018, adopted a Decision on a second allocation of EUR 3 billion for the Facility for Refugees in Turkey, with the same distribution of contributions as the first tranche 26 . Following an agreement with the Member States on the Updated Common Understanding on 18 July 2018, the Commission adopted a modified Decision on 24 July 2018 mobilising EUR 2 billion from the Union budget in 2018-2019, with Member States making up the balance of EUR 1 billion as external assigned revenue 27 .


In order to build on the tangible results of the first tranche of the Facility, and to ensure a smooth and efficient continuation of programming of the second tranche, Member States endorsed an updated Strategic Concept Note 28 at the meeting of the Steering Committee in June 2018. The latter took into consideration the findings of the updated needs assessment 29 , conducted through extensive stakeholders' consultations in the first half of the year 30 , and other relevant documents 31 .

The updated needs assessment report identifies the priority needs and remaining gaps in the refugee response and provides a valuable guide for the programming of the second tranche of the Facility. The report provides an update of the assessment commissioned by the Commission in June 2016. It takes stock of refugee and host community needs as they developed since 2016 and identifies areas requiring further assistance. It concludes that protection, basic needs and livelihoods, health, education and municipal infrastructure continue to be key areas of focus.

The Strategic Concept Note (herafter ‘the Note’) sets out to provide a strategic framework for the programming and implementation of the second tranche of the Facility, with a special focus on inclusion and self-reliance as main objectives. The Note confirmed the need for close cooperation between government, development and humanitarian instruments to identify more sustainable and durable solutions in the context of a protracted crisis, and beyond the life-span of the Facility and the disbursement of EUR 6 billion. This implies a strategic shift from humanitarian to development assistance under the Facility. Particular attention would be given to the provision of sustainable socio-economic support and livelihood opportunities, and strengthening the capacity of host communities to accomodate refugees while supporting social cohesion. The Turkish authorities and the Commission would work to ensure the sustainability of the Facility’s projects , after the Facility has come to an end. Moreover, the Turkish national system would need to be prepared to take over implementation of Facility assistance to ensure sustainable solutions and equitable access to rights and services.

The programming of the second tranche aims to reflect the recommendations of the Special Report on the Facility of the European Court of Auditors 32 , issued in November 2018 (see also under Audit below). The Court put particular emphasis on the need for a joint strategy to mobilise the humanitarian and development strands of the Facility, to anticipate the transition from Facility funding to the national authorities and to ensure the sustainability of Facility achievements beyond the lifespan of the Facility.

As a first step in the mobilisation of additional support under the second tranche of the Facility, a Special Measure on education was adopted by the Commission in July 2018 after consultation of the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA) management committee. The Special Measure allocated EUR 400 million for continued access to quality education for refugees 33 . The objective is to further increase access to qualitative and inclusive education services for refugees residing in Turkey, including for adults, and to support their integration into the Turkish education system, thus promoting social cohesion. It builds on previous support in the education area, notably the first direct grant of EUR 300 million to the Ministry of National Education, "Promoting Integration of Syrian Children into the Turkish Education System" (PICTES).

The Special Measure was modified in November 2018 to include additional funding of EUR 100 million for much-needed school infrastructure, so as to be able to cover needs in terms of classrooms and educational spaces 34 . In December 2018, two Calls for Expression of Interest were launched in the area of socio-economic support and municipal infrastructure, with an allocation of EUR 465 million and EUR 380 million respectively. The Commission launched its Humanitarian Implementation Plan (HIP) 35 for 2018, identifying available funding and potential partners for the humanitarian strand of the Facility. Preparations for further assistance in the areas of socio-economic support and health continued in parallel and should be confirmed in the course of the second quarter of 2019, with a particular focus on ensuring the transition from cash-transfer support to self-reliance and active labour market participation.

5.Implementation of the Facility

The Facility is implemented as humanitarian and development assistance, with roughly EUR 1.4 billion and EUR 1.6 billion allocated to the respective strands under the first tranche.

Humanitarian assistance supports the most vulnerable refugees through the provision of predictable and dignified support addressing basic needs and protection. It also addresses gaps in service provision through specialised agencies and partners in health and education in emergencies.

Development assistance supports the longer-term needs in the fields of health, education and socio-economic development of refugees, notably in terms of access to public services and livelihood opportunities. It also focuses on vulnerable groups and includes a gender dimension in the interventions, e.g. protection of women and girls against sexual and gender based violence and improving access to sexual and reproductive health care.

Particular attention is paid to non-Syrian refugees and asylum seekers. Facility interventions always aim to involve the local communities hosting refugees.

The EUR 3 billion under the first tranche of the Facility for 2016-2017 have been fully committed and contracted 36 , with 72 projects rolled out, showing tangible results. At the end of 2018, more than EUR 2.072 billion out of the EUR 3 billion had been disbursed, with the balance to be disbursed in the course of implementation of Facility projects through to mid-2021.

Full details can be obtained from the online projects table 37 .

Out of the EUR 3 billion under the second tranche of the Facility for 2018-2019, EUR 1.2 billion has been committed as of February 2019, with EUR 450 million contracted and EUR 150 million disbursed at the end of 2018.

Facility assistance is mobilised throughout Turkey, but is at its most concentrated in the ten most affected provinces - Istanbul, Sanliurfa, Hatay, Gaziantep, Mersin, Adana, Bursa, Kilis, Izmir, and Kahramanmaras 38 . Facility assistance tends to be mainly provided to out-of-camp refugees and migrants.

5.1 Humanitarian assistance

EU humanitarian aid is guided by the European Consensus on Humanitarian Aid of 2007 39 , which stipulates that the EU as a humanitarian actor adheres to the humanitarian principles of humanity, neutrality, impartiality, and independence, as set out in Article 214 of the TFEU) and in the Humanitarian Aid Regulation (No. 1257/96) 40 , 41 .

Under the humanitarian strand of the Facility, in the first tranche, EUR 1.389 billion has been allocated and all 45 humanitarian projects have been contracted with 19 partners, covering the response to basic needs, protection, education, and health for the most vulnerable refugees in Turkey. EUR 1.11 billion has been disbursed to date, benefiting a total of 1 561 940 refugees 42 . Under the second tranche, EUR 690 million has so far been allocated to basic needs, protection, education and health. The first EUR 50 million of projects were contracted in 2018, through 11 projects in the fields of health and protection. The Humanitarian Implementation Plan for 2018 included EUR 51.17 million of humanitarian funding under the Facility (EUR 50 million from the second tranche, and EUR 1.17 million reallocated from unspent funds under first tranche projects) 43 . Some of the main humanitarian aid achievements in 2018 44 can be found below.

The Emergency Social Safety Net

The EU has continued to address the needs of refugees with high socio-economic vulnerability via the Emergency Social Safety Net. This is a humanitarian social assistance programme consisting of a debit card that delivers monthly, unrestricted, multi-purpose cash directly to vulnerable refugees. As of January 2019, over 1.5 million beneficiaries had benefited from monthly cash transfers through the programme.

Education in emergencies

The EU continues to facilitate access for refugee populations to formal education systems by reducing barriers and providing the means for at-risk children to be able to go to school. Launched in 2017, the Conditional Cash Transfer for Education programme 45 is the largest ever programme financed by the EU on education in emergencies and it is surpassing its initial targets. As of February 2019, the families of over 470 000 children attending school received financial support through the Conditional Cash Transfer for Education programme. Furthermore, as of December 2018 an average of 6 768 children per month benefited from school transportation support and 9 267 refugee children benefited from non-formal education activities. Such activities include provision of non-formal education courses in Turkish and/or Arabic, accelerated learning programmes, home learning initiatives and homework clubs. These programmes will facilitate the children's entrance to formal education at their age-appropriate grade.


The EU has focused on filling potential gaps in primary health care service provision as well as providing services specifically needed by refugees and other persons of concern. From the start of the Facility to October 2018 a total of 873 365 primary health care consultations were delivered to refugees in heavily refugee-populated provinces. In addition, 40 705 pregnant women benefitted of 84 714 ante natal care (ANC) consultations, 105 315 refugees received mental health care and psycho-social support and 13 075 refugees benefited from post-operative and rehabilitative services.


The EU continues to fund projects to support refugees’ access to registration and services, and address needs of at risk groups and individuals. For example, with support from the Facility, the Turkey's Directorate General of Migration Management had verified the data of over 2.6 million refugees living in Turkey.

5.2 Development assistance

Under the development strand of the Facility, the implementation of 26 projects contracted under the first tranche continues to show good progress with two contracts already completed. Disbursements to implementing partners have reached EUR 943 million out of a total of EUR 1.6 billion allocated to development assistance under the first tranche 46 . Under the second tranche of the Facility, EUR 400 million has been contracted for the continuation of activities which increase access to quality inclusive education services for refugees residing in Turkey, as well as to support their integration into the Turkish education system and promote social cohesion. In addition, EUR 100 million has been committed to support school infrastructure to cover needs for classrooms and educational spaces. In the area of socio-economic support and municipal infrastructure, EUR 465 million and EUR 380 million have been allocated respectively.

In addition to the allocation managed directly through the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance 47 , the development side of the Facility supports a series of bottom-up measures through 15 projects under the EU Regional Trust Fund in Response to the Syrian Crisis for a total of EUR 293 million.

The breakdown of allocations of the non-humanitarian strand of the Facility per priority area is as follows:


The EU is supporting all stages of the education system, from early childhood to higher education, in order not to lose a generation of young people.

The implementation of the PICTES 48 project - a EUR 300 million direct grant to the Turkish Ministry of National Education to promote the integration of Syrian children into the Turkish education system - continued during the 2018 school year, over-achieving the action's indicator targets in many areas. For instance, Turkish language teaching culminated in a proficiency examination in which almost 400 000 students participated by the end of September 2018. In total, more than 16 000 students received catch-up training and more than 43 000 back-up training. The number of teachers and Ministry of Education administrators trained under the project exceeded 19 000 by the end of September 2018. These activities will continue under the PIKTES II 49 contract, signed in December 2018. This action, worth a total of EUR 400 million, aims to ensure that refugee children residing in Turkey have access to quality, inclusive education for an additional three school years. Moreover, it will support children’s integration into the Turkish education system while promoting social cohesion including for adults. A second action of EUR 100 million will scale-up interventions in school infrastructure in areas with a high concentration of refugees. The construction of school building under existing programmes is progressing. The construction of 136 solid structure and 50 prefabricated schools is ongoing. 33 pre-fabricated schools were completed by December 2018. Furthermore, the construction of three solid structure schools are well advanced.

In addition, as of December 2018, almost 6 000 Syrian volunteer teachers were supported with monthly incentives, over 14 000 children benefitted from community and home-based early childhood education.

To provide opportunities for refugees in higher education, 476 students are receiving university scholarships through three projects and the number of supported pupils is expected to increase in the academic year 2019.


The main pillar of assistance in the priority area of health is the SIHHAT project 50 , a EUR 300 million direct grant with the Turkish Ministry of Health to ensure refugees' access to healthcare services. As of December 2018, thanks to Facility interventions 2 569 medical staff are employed 51 (69% of which are Syrian refugees) and are delivering services in 178 Migrant Health Centres (MHC), out of which 45 are Extended Migrant Health Centres (E-MHCs) delivering basic secondary health care services. The implementation of health infrastructure projects is also progressing, with tenders ongoing for the construction of two state hospitals (in Kilis and Hatay) that are expected to be opened in June 2021 and should provide a total of 500 beds.

Socio-economic support

The work on livelihoods and socio-economic support plays a critical role in the integration of refugees into Turkish society and fosters much needed social and economic cohesion. As the language barrier is a major impediment to effective integration, the Facility is providing Turkish language classes to refugees. Total support under the first tranche of the Facility reached EUR 196.6 million, through eight projects 52 . Support in this area should be increased significantly under the second tranche to ensure sustainability and further integration. A Call for Expression of Interest in the area of socio-economic support was launched in December 2018 53 allocating EUR 465 million for projects that should stimulate refugee resilience and self-reliance.

A EUR 50 million project run by the Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (KfW) provides increased access to inclusive quality vocational education and training (VET) for refugees and Turkish adolescents in vocational branches with a high demand on the labour market. In parallel, a EUR 50 million World Bank project aims at improving the employability and labour market integration of refugees and host communities in Turkey. Institutional support for employment services is strengthening the capacity of the Turkish employment agency to provide counselling and job assistance and the capacity of the Turkish Ministry of Family, Labour and Social Services to monitor the provision of work permits and employment services. Additionally, Turkish authorities receive support to enhance the capacity to assess demand for skills in selected provinces with high incidence of refugees, and to boost activities for job creation and entrepreneurship.

Through the EU Regional Trust Fund in response to the Syrian crisis, several projects cover key areas such as Turkish language learning for adults, skills certification and vocational guidance, job matching, support to SMEs, entrepreneurship and job creation, etc.

Facility-funded community centres also provide an extensive range of services, from training courses to information and referral services, to cultural and networking events in order to increase the resilience and self-reliance of refugees and host communities. Furthermore, a conference on how to envisage a stronger Gender Sensitive Refugee Response in Turkey took place in January 2019, in the context of an ongoing UN Women project that aims at empowering and strengthening resilience of Syrian women and girls, and building social cohesion with their host communities in Turkey.

Gender aspects within projects under the Facility

Gender is an important consideration in the programming of projects under the Facility for Refugees in Turkey. Facility interventions aim to promote equal opportunities for men and women, and boys and girls, wherever possible. Gender disaggregated data is collected to monitor this and some dedicated actions have been developed in this area. Efforts have been made to align Facility actions with thematic objectives under the Gender Action Plan 2016-2020. These include the fight against violence against women and girls (VAWG), equal access for girls and women to quality education and vocational education and training (VET) free from discrimination, and support to women’s organisations and civil society organisations working for gender equality and women’s and girls’ empowerment. The Facility is working with implementing partners with solid experience in this area, including United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF), UN Women and International Labor Organisation (ILO). For example, UNICEF offers essential social services to children, specifically to girls and women and their families, with an approach that gives a more holistic understanding of the gender roles within the family and society.

Migration management

The Facility has covered the costs incurred in the management of returns (transportation, hosting) of 212 Syrians and 1 076 non-Syrians, as well as logistical equipment and works for facilities for 750 people. From August 2017 to end-September 2018, 119 173 migrants received Facility-funded assistance in this way. EU support under the Facility has also helped increase the capacity of the Turkish Coast Guard to carry out search and rescue operations. Six life boats were delivered in 2018 and 1 081 Turkish Coast Guard staff have been trained in humanitarian standards. Both projects were funded under the Facility’s first tranche. No specific budget allocation has been foreseen for this area under the second tranche.

6.Monitoring & Evaluation

The monitoring and evaluation (M&E) system of the Facility was designed to be rolled out gradually.

Results Framework

The Facility Results Framework (RF) reflects the intervention logic of the Facility. It is informed by the Facility’s strategic framework as well as by the programmed actions and their logical frameworks. The Results Framework was developed between August 2016 and March 2017 in consultation with key stakeholders, including the Facility Steering Committee, relevant Turkish authorities and Commission Services. A finalised draft was shared with the Steering Committee in March 2017.

Based on the results of the pilot monitoring phase and on the finalisation of contracting, the Results Framework was further refined in 2018, in consultation with the operational stakeholders and an updated version was presented to the Facility Steering Committee of November 2018.

Facility-level monitoring and reporting

Facility-level monitoring was launched in spring 2017. Monitoring data are generated at the action-level by the implementing partners as per their obligation under each contract. A first request for monitoring data was issued in May 2017, followed by three pilot monitoring and reporting cycles launched in 2017. At the 11th Steering Committee meeting, a monitoring report covering the Facility’s achievements up to 30 June 2018 was presented 54 .

The first few data collection cycles were designed as a pilot phase for the Results Framework output indicators. They were instrumental in familiarising implementing partners with Facility monitoring and reporting requirements, and to test the feasibility of the proposed indicators. It is important to note that a significant share of the Facility portfolio of projects was contracted towards the end of 2017 and that implementation of the corresponding actions started only in 2018.

Data relevant to the Facility Results Framework indicators are reported by implementing partners to contracting authorities, i.e. the EU Delegation (EUD) to Turkey, the EU Regional Trust Fund in response to the Syrian crisis (EUTF) and the Commission, using one common monitoring template. The data consolidation process is technically supported by an internal IT-tool (Facility Monitoring Platform) that allows for the automatic aggregation, analysis and visualisation of data. The Platform is currently undergoing final testing.

The Contracting Authorities and the Facility Secretariat aim to standardise data collection processes. Assessing the level of attribution of particular results to the Facility’s actions is equally problematic due to the scale and diversity of the interventions and the multiple stakeholders involved. In summary, the measurement of the level of achievement of the Facility’s specific results remains challenging.

Technical Assistance for monitoring

A Commission Decision for a Support Measure on Monitoring, Evaluation, Audit and Communication of the Facility for Refugees in Turkey was adopted in May 2017 55 . This enabled the procurement of technical assistance to support monitoring and reporting on Facility Result framework and specific funded interventions. The technical assistance contract for monitoring was signed in January 2018 and is in full implementation. The assignment has two distinct parts. The first consists of the support to monitoring at the Facility level. This comprises a periodic review of the Results Framework, the review of baseline and target values and the indicator calculation methods and related guidelines. The technical assistance team is also in charge of supporting the Facility Secretariat in deriving first-level analysis of the monitoring data collected quarterly via the Facility Monitoring Platform and preparing the Facility Monitoring Reports. The second part of the assignment consists of supporting the EU Delegation in its duties to monitor Facility-funded actions/contracts, including verification of data through on-the-spot checks for contracts under direct management. Indeed, due to the size of some Facility interventions and the geographical spread of the activities, the Delegation needs support for on-the-ground checks. By the end of December 2018, 50 monitoring missions had been completed: 16 of these were performed in 2017 (including 2 result oriented monitoring (ROM) missions) and 34 were carried out in 2018 (including 3 ROM and 8 by the technical assistance team). Over 35% of the monitoring missions targeted the direct grants to the Ministries of Education and Health in Turkey.

Monitoring of all actions financed under the Humanitarian Implementation Plans was undertaken by the Commission, notably Commission field staff in Turkey and the regional Commission office in Amman. By November 2018, 148 project-level monitoring missions had been completed. In addition to the indicators of the Results Framework under which partners are reporting, additional indicators on protection are also reported on periodically which is also reflected in the Monitoring Platform for Facility-level monitoring.


Eight Facility action- and portfolio level evaluations have been completed and three are ongoing 56 . In addition, one Facility-related evaluation is completed and two Facility-related evaluations are ongoing. The evaluations cover mainly humanitarian assistance and assistance provided under the EU regional Trust Fund in response to the Syria Crisis. In December 2018, the Commission launched the strategic mid-term evaluation of the Facility, which will take place in the course of 2019-2020. The objective is to assess the contribution provided under the Facility to the priority areas of education, health, socio-economic support and migration management in the period of 2016-2019/20. It is expected to provide an overall independent assessment of the intermediate results measured against its objectives, to capture lessons learned and provide recommendations to improve current and future Facility actions.


The European Court of Auditors (ECA) officially launched its performance audit of the Facility on 17 October 2017. The publication of the Court's final report followed on 13 November 2018. The audit focused on the complementarity of assistance under the Facility, its delivery and monitoring, and a sample of ten humanitarian projects. The Court focused on the management of the first few projects financed by the Facility and on the results so far under its humanitarian strand. The Court found that, in a challenging context, the Facility had rapidly mobilised funds to provide a swift response, but that there was room to increase the efficiency of humanitarian projects and in particular cash-assistance projects, and that the Facility needed to deliver greater value for money. 57 It addressed a number of recommendations to the Commission, which the Commission has fully accepted and is already implementing, notably in terms of shifting interventions towards development assistance (see under Programming).

8.Communication and visibility

From the very beginning of the Facility, visibility and communication have been key priorities. The Facility is central in conveying the message of the EU's continued strong support to refugees and host communities in Turkey. The 2017 communication strategy remains the overall framework for communication activities, with the aim to enhance the visibility of Facility-funded actions.

Several visibility activities took place in 2018, including a press trip with European journalists and Member State representatives in Istanbul and Gaziantep in November 2018, which generated extensive media coverage. The trip included many site visits to Facility-funded projects as well as an opening ceremony covering a project in the socio-economic support sector. In addition, the EU Turkey Delegation partnered up with the Turkish Red Crescent and Galatasaray Football Club for a high visibility activity, consisting of Syrian and Turkish children interacting with famous football players during training and then watching a national football game. The media outreach was 100 million people, with two videos shared through the Delegation’s social media channels 58 .

Key events and ceremonies also took place in Turkey and in Europe, organised in collaboration with the humanitarian partners. In July, an exhibition took place at Brussels airport, organised in collaboration with UNICEF, called ‘Education - Our Future’ which featured pictures of refugee children benefitting from the EU funded ‘Conditional Cash Transfer for Education Programme’ (CCTE) in Turkey. The exhibition received extensive press coverage both in Turkey and in Europe, with a social media outreach of 260 000. In September 2018, World Food Programme (WFP) launched a communication campaign ‘Incredible Ordinary’, funded by the EU, raising awareness about the ESSN programme between EU citizens. The impact of this support was presented to EU audiences through The #IncredibleOrdinary pop-up shop in Paris, Milan, Warsaw, Berlin and Amsterdam, which showcased the stories of eight refugee families who benefit from the programme. In their own words, the families explain how a seemingly ordinary item, made possible thanks to ESSN support, had incredible meaning for them 59 .

25 videos were produced to promote projects focusing on human interest stories with refugees given the chance to tell their story. They were published on the Delegation’s and Commission’s YouTube channels and shared through the social media channels on various occasions. 60 Last autumn, Euronews AidZone outlet aired an episode on EU funded health services for conflict-affected Syrian refugees which was shown all over Europe 61 .

In addition, the Commission issued five press releases and the Delegation issued another 17. Facility newsletters were distributed to the members of the Steering Committee on a quarterly basis featuring up-to-date Facility activities and a selection of video materials. Articles and blog stories featuring human interest stories were also published 62 and there was considerable press coverage of high level EU visits related to the projects financed under the Facility.

9.Conclusion and next steps

The operational envelope of the first tranche of the Facility has been fully contracted and over EUR 2 billion disbursed by March 2019. Important progress has been made in the mobilisation of the second tranche, with EUR 1.2 billion committed, EUR 450 million contracted and EUR 150 million disbursed by March 2019. The Facility continues to provide much needed assistance to refugees and host communities in Turkey. The next steps are the following:

·Effective implementation of all projects to benefit refugees and host communities, in line with the principles of sound financial management.

·Roll-out of the second tranche, with implementation of projects until mid-2025.

·Fully-fledged monitoring system becoming fully operational.

·Continued roll-out of communication activities.

·The Steering Committee to meet at regular intervals. Next meetings are planned for spring and autumn 2019.


Commission Decision C(2015) 9500 of 24.11.2015 on the coordination of the actions of the Union and of the Member States through a coordination mechanism – the Refugee Facility for Turkey, as amended by Commission Decision C(2016)855 of 10.2.2016.




3,607,563 "Syrians under Temporary Protection" were registered on 29 November 2018, source Turkish Directorate General for Migration Management:


A specificity of the Turkish asylum system is linked to the fact that the country has signed the 1967 New York Protocol of the 1951 Geneva Convention with a reservation. Accordingly, the vast majority of refugees in Turkey cannot apply for fully-fledged refugee status but for "Conditional Refugee" status only, which, if granted, limits the stay in the country until the moment a recognised refugee is "resettled to a third country".




Commission Decision C(2016) 855 final of 10.02.2016 on the Facility for Refugees in Turkey amending Commission Decision C(2015) 9500 of 24.11.2015.




Data on arrivals provided by EU Member States and EBCGA.


According to the EU-Turkey Statement, for every Syrian being returned to Turkey from Greek islands, another Syrian is resettled from Turkey to the EU taking into account the UN Vulnerability Criteria.


Commission Decision C(2015) 9500 of 24.11.2015, Article 2 – Objectives of the Facility.


See Article 5 (1) of Commission Decision C(2015) 9500, as amended by Commission Decision C(2016)855.




Council Regulation (EC) No 1257/96 concerning humanitarian aid , OJ L163, 2.7.1996, p. 1.


Regulation (EU) No 232/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing a European Neighbourhood Instrument, OJ L 77, 15.3.2014, p. 27.


Regulation (EU) No 233/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing a financing instrument for development cooperation, OJ L 77, 15.3.2014, p. 44.


Regulation (EU) No 231/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing an Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance, OJ L 77, 15.3.2014, p. 11.


Regulation (EU) No 230/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing an instrument contributing to stability and peace, OJ L 77, 15.3.2014, p. 1.


The European Neighbourhood Instrument and the Development Cooperation Instrument (DCI) contributions were respectively transferred to and implemented under the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance and the EU Trust Fund. In principle all Facility contributions to the EUTF (from IPA and to a minor extent from DCI) were implemented as non-humanitarian assistance.


The total distribution of Member States' contribution is available at .



Except for some EUR 20 million ongoing administrative expenditure, technical assistance, communication, monitoring, evaluation and audit expenditure that may be committed and contracted during the entire lifespan of the Facility.


Commission Decision C(2018)1500 final on the Facility for Refugees in Turkey amending Commission Decision C(2015)9500 as regards the contribution to the Facility for Refugees in Turkey -14.3.2018


Commission Decision C(2018)4959 final on the Facility for Refugees in Turkey amending Commission Decision C(2015)9500 as regards the contribution to the Facility for Refugees in Turkey - 24.7.2018




The final report of the updated needs assessment was issued on 31 October 2018


 In particular the 2016 ‘Lives in Dignity’ Communication on forced displacement and development (COM(2016) 234 final) and its accompanying Council Conclusions ( Council conclusions on the EU approach to forced displacement and development , May 2016


 ECA report:


Special Measure on Education C(2018)4960 final of 24.7.2018


  Amended Special Measure on Education C(2018)8254 final of 11.12.2018



Except for some EUR 20 million ongoing administrative expenditure, technical assistance, communication, monitoring, evaluation and audit expenditure that may be committed and contracted during the entire lifespan of the Facility



The distribution of Syrian refugees per province is available at:  


Joint Statement by the Council and the Representatives of the Governments of the Member States.


Council Regulation (EC) No 1257/96 of 20 June 1996 concerning humanitarian aid.


The European Commission's humanitarian aid is based on annual country-specific Humanitarian Implementation Plans. The framework for cooperation between the Commission and its partners in the area of humanitarian aid is established by the Commission's Financial and Administrative Framework Agreements with international organisations and Framework Partnership Agreements with non-governmental organisations.


Including both refugees which benefited from the Emergency Social Safety Net as well as previous similar programmes


Available at:  


Refugees may have received more than one service and the total figures do not account for overlap.



This figure includes also disbursements under projects implemented by the EU Regional Trust Fund in Response to the Syrian Crisis, but not yet charged to the EU budget.


Funds from the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance under the Facility are managed in accordance with the rules for external action contained in Title IV of part two of the Financial Regulation and its Rules of Application. For more details, see the second Annual Report on the Facility.


PICTES stands for "Promoting Integration of Syrian children into Turkish Education System". It is a EUR 300 million direct grant with the Turkish Ministry of National Education to promote the integration of Syrian children into the Turkish education system.


PIKTES “Promoting Integration of Syrian Kids into Turkish Education System. It is a EUR 400 million direct grant with the Turkish Ministry of National Education to promote the integration of Syrian kids into the Turkish education system.


SIHHAT stands for “Improving the health status of the Syrian population under temporary protection and related services” provided by Turkish authorities.


118 Specialists, 482 Practitioners, 754 Midwives/nurses, 892 Bilingual patient guides, 323 Auxiliary staff


See the projects table on the NEAR website, excluding projects listed as Education/Socio-Economic Support



  The Facility Results Framework - Monitoring Report


 Commission Implementing Decision C(2017) 3378 final of 23.5.2017 on the support measure on monitoring, evaluation, audit and communication of the Facility for Refugees in Turkey


Examples: Evaluation of the European Union's humanitarian response to the refugee crisis in Turkey, 2016-2017; Evaluation of the DG ECHO funded Emergency Social Safety Net (ESSN) in Turkey, November 2016–February 2018; Mid-term Strategic Evaluation of the EU Regional Trust Fund in Response to the Syrian Crisis.


 ECA report:  


180K views on FB, 65K views on Twitter, 1K likes on Youtube and 6K reach on Instagram.


Incredible Ordinary webpage and example of testimonial:


Dedicated Delegation YouTube channel with examples of videos:


Euronews AidZone episode: