Guidance for grantees

General guidance


Financial management guidance

Find the following financial management topics on this page:
– Impact of COVID-19
– Due diligence check
– Financial guidelines for beneficiaries
– Operational audits
– Visits to research sites: summary of findings.

Impact of COVID-19 on EDCTP2 grants
For some financial questions and answers regarding the impact of Covid-19 on EDCTP2 projects see:

Due diligence check
Prior to grant signature, all new coordinators of EDCTP grants must complete a due diligence review questionnaire. This is used to assess the strength of the internal financial control environment of new coordinators.

The questionnaire is divided into four sections:
– organisation of the finance department;
– accounting system;
– bank accounts; and
– experience of managing donor projects.

The information obtained via due diligence is used to help the EDCTP Grant Finance Officers to take decisions such as which type of bank account – pooled or designated – the new coordinator will be advised to operate for the project.

EDCTP Financial Guidelines for Beneficiaries
The EDCTP Financial Guidelines for Beneficiaries have been prepared to supplement the Grant Agreement.
The main objectives of preparing these guidelines are to:

– Provide a quick reference and easy to follow guide to beneficiaries of EDCTP funding
– Act as a reference document for external auditors and other stakeholders in carrying out financial audits or other reviews of EDCTP funded projects
– Ensure consistency in the financial management of EDCTP grants.

It is important to note that this document has been prepared to act as a supplement to the Grant Agreement; most of the information is extracted from the Grant Agreement. Beneficiaries must therefore ensure that they are familiar with all articles of the Grant Agreement.

This document is meant purely to be a documentation tool. Therefore EDCTP management does not accept any liability for its contents. In the event of a conflict between this document and the Grant Agreement, the Grant Agreement takes precedence.

Operational audits
EDCTP has appointed the firm PWC Netherlands to conduct operational audits of recipients of EDCTP funding (beneficiaries). The aim is to ensure compliance with all the financial management requirements, particularly those in articles 6 and 13 of the Delegation Agreement.

The Delegation Agreement was signed in December 2014 between the European Union, represented by the European Commission, and the EDCTP Association entrusting budget implementation tasks to the EDCTP Association.

Article 6 (General obligation to properly implement the entrusted tasks) states that the EDCTP shall put in place proper management and control mechanisms, including carrying out controls on beneficiaries of grants, contracts, and prizes; and shall take appropriate measures to prevent, detect and correct irregularities and fraud.

Article 13 (Controls on the recipients) states that EDCTP Association shall carry out ex-ante and ex-post controls on its payments to the recipients in accordance with Article 29 of Regulation No 1291/20133, including, where appropriate, on-the-spot checks on representative and risk-based samples of transactions to ensure that underlying transactions are legal and regular and that actions financed from the EU budget are effectively carried out and implemented correctly.

The main objectives of the operational audits are to ascertain whether beneficiaries are implementing EDCTP funded projects with due regard to value for money, and in compliance with the Grant Agreement signed between them and EDCTP.A summary of operational audit findings reported by PWC for the audits they have performed on behalf of EDCTP, can be found here:

Visits to research sites
EDCTP conducts visits to EDCTP-funded beneficiaries and their research sites.

The main objective of the financial assessments performed during these visits is to ascertain whether the selected beneficiaries are managing the finances of the project in accordance with relevant provisions of the Grant Agreement signed between them and EDCTP. The assessments performed are designed to identify areas where beneficiaries are not following the EDCTP Financial Guidelines, (including areas where the risks of ineligible expenses arising are high) and therefore need to come up with action plans to ensure adherence to the relevant financial provisions of the Grant Agreement.

The site visit audit programme for financial assessment includes reviewing:

1. Compliance with the Grant Agreement
2. The accounting system, including the chart of accounts, to ensure that the income and expenditure for the EDCTP-funded project are separately identifiable from other projects.
3. Bank reconciliation statements
4. Fixed asset registers
5. Timesheets
6. Subcontracting costs.

For a summary see: