Twinning: International partnerships between public authorities
Within the framework of the Twinning programme, experts from Federal Government and Länder authorities are posted to partner countries, usually for a period of up to two years, to carry out projects in collaboration with local experts. Typical projects include setting up government institutions or preparing new legislation.
Since the beginning of the Twinning programme (1998), more than 2,700 cooperation projects has been finalized. The BMEL has also made good use of this instrument over the past years, participating in around 155 Twinning projects.
Not only are Twinning projects a strategic instrument for the BMEL's foreign trade relations, they also promote bilateral cooperation and improve contacts for negotiations in Brussels. The Twinning programme was originally designed to support EU accession candidates (i.e. future member states) in the implementation of European legislation. But in recent years, the scope has been extended to include additional potential candidate countries and now also comprises EU neighbouring countries without accession prospects.