frequently asked questions
The primary objective of the Regional Integration Support Mechanism (RISM) programme is to improve the implementation of regional commitments at the Member State level. The commitments are defined through a set of defined indicators, against which all countries that are eligible for RISM funding, provide annual targets. The RISM program has two distinct cycles. The first cycle relates to the core function of RISM which is the formulation, implementation and Monitoring of the Regional Integration Implementation Programmes (RIIP) and its associated Progress Monitoring Report (PMR).
The main objective of the first cycle is for the periodic review of the achievement of set targets outlined in RIIPs and on that basis approved resources allocations from the COMESA Adjustment Facility (CAF).
The second cycle, which is a secondary process, involves the formulation and implementation of projects for those countries whose disbursements are through the project support modality. The project cycle provides an alternative disbursement modality for the countries that are not eligible for budget support.
While the budget support modality involves the transfer of funds to the Ministry of Finances of the Member States as soon as the allocation is validated by the EU, the project support modality involves formulating a Project Document, including specific objectives and budget lines for specific activities to be funded by the country allocation.
Member States to honor their regional commitments under COMESA and EAC. It does so, through the provision of additional resources that support implementation of regional integration and trade related programmes at the level of the Member State. Though RISM does not finance the totality of transposition costs, it complements existing national resources and efforts on regional integration.
In 2012, the RISM programme was amended through a rider to provide wider support for national level implementation of COMESA and EAC regional integration commitments beyond revenue loss compensation.
COMESA Fund Member States, can access RISM resources by submitting Regional Integration Implementation Programmes (RIIPs), which includes performance Indicators.
A Performance Assessment Framework (PAF), that is part of the RIIP provides for improved monitoring of transposition and implementation of regional programmes at national level. Continued support is based on the Progress Monitoring Reports (PMR), which highlight the level of achievement against set targets. The Secretariat also provides technical support to Member States during preparation of RIIPs, PAFs and RIIP Progress Monitoring Reports.
The funding incentives to the Member States under RISM are already supporting regional integration, motivating the countries to: re-organize their national management, coordination, implementation and monitoring of regional integration programmes, through the establishment of National Inter-Ministerial Coordinating Committees.
RISM has also been instrumental in communicating challenges in the regional integration process through the strengthened technical ties between Member States and the Secretariat. The robust interactions with the Member States and the European Union that are inherent to the programme have fostered continuous refinement and enhancement of the programme. This has set RISM apart as a highly interactive, flexible, learning and adaptive programme with notable positive impacts on regional integration.