|The single set of standardised rates in the Cost Norms continues to be used by all national implementing partners and other counterparts in Viet Nam for the local costs of ODA programmes and projects funded by UN agencies and EU member states.— File Photo
HA NOI (VNS) — Representatives of the Vietnamese Government, the UN and the EU in Viet Nam on Monday agreed to the updated UN - EU Guidelines for financing local costs in development co-operation, better known as the UN - EU Cost Norms.
The single set of standardised rates in the Cost Norms continues to be used by all national implementing partners and other counterparts in Viet Nam for the local costs of ODA programmes and projects funded by UN agencies and EU member states.
Since its launch in 2009, the Cost Norms have achieved positive results in reducing transaction costs.
The guidelines are in line with the Ha Noi Core Statement and Viet Nam Partnership Document on Aid Effectiveness and are considered an important tool to promote greater transparency and a basis for stronger alignment and harmonisation between the Government, the UN and development partners.
The agreement, signed by Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen The Phuong, UN Resident Coordinator Pratibha Mehta, and the head of the European Union Delegation, Ambassador Franz Jessen, endorsed the use of the UN Guidelines for the Cost Norms.
It is expected that this updated version will better align donor and government cost norms to current market rates and conditions.
The market-oriented rates will attract high-quality human resources, services and encourage full collaboration, yet are flexible enough to accommodate different business models and project requirements.
The rates will be reviewed periodically to reflect changes in market prices.
The guidelines address remuneration for project staff, consultant rates, translation services, travel and meeting costs, and other related project expenses.
Work plans of on-going projects will also be revised to accommodate the new costs, subject to current financial-year budget availability, according to a press release from the UN Communication Office in Ha Noi. — VNS