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European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR)
News article25 June 20211 min read

The pandemic reshapes TAIEX and Twinning


The sudden standstill of international activities in spring 2020 required a thorough redesigning of the European Commission’s institution building instruments TAIEX and Twinning.

A joint effort

TAIEX and Twinning support partners’ public administrations in the approximation, application and enforcement of EU legislation and the sharing of EU best practice. Requests for assistance are matched with expertise in EU public administrations to facilitate peer-to-peer learning between civil servants from the EU and partner countries.

The halt of international travel and physical meetings in March 2020 posed an enormous challenge to the work of the institution building community. It required the redesigning of exchanges in digital format.

A digital leap

The transition of TAIEX into a virtual instrument enabled continued support to EU partners and their citizens worldwide throughout the pandemic in critical areas such as health and cybersecurity. So far, over 12 000 participants and 2000 experts have taken part in virtual TAIEX. Online tools have also played an essential role in Twinning, where additional flexibility was introduced to facilitate remote implementation of ongoing projects.

While face-to-face interaction remains important for peer exchanges, combining the best elements from traditional physical and innovative digital practices will make TAIEX and Twinning more accessible and resilient to future disruptions. In fact, TAIEX events in 2020 had on average 24% more attendees and 21% more experts than in 2019.

This year is also the 25th anniversary of the TAIEX instrument. Today, TAIEX continues to support the candidate countries in their reforms and is also available to other partners worldwide and the EU Member States.

To find out more about TAIEX and Twinning as part of Team Europe in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, consult the 2020 Annual Activity Report.


Publication date
25 June 2021