9:10 – 11:10 – Panel Discussion: Importance of active EU Public Sector Expertise mobilization for Development Cooperation Projects in the EU Partner Countries

Panel description: The EU Member States (MS) having one of the highest degrees of governance effectiveness have a comparative advantage as a provider of Public Sector Expertise (PSE). Therefore, one of the key means to pursue the objectives of the EU development cooperation policy is by mobilizing the PSE through existing development cooperation instruments (Twinning, Taiex, grants, Sigma, delegated cooperation, other) and national bilateral development cooperation programmes. The scientific research findings about PSE involvement effectiveness for EU development cooperation projects will be presented at the Conference. The representative of the European Commission will be invited to share the information about PSE involvement in the EU financed projects in the past and possibilities for their involvement in the future, possible tools financed by EU for PSE participation. A representative of the Practitioners’ Network will present and discuss the findings on the use of Public Sector Expertise prepared by the Practitioners’ Network.  Representatives of the EU Partner Countries will share and discuss their experiences of EU MS Public Sector Expertise involvement in advising their institutions, their expectations for the future engagement with EU and bilateral development cooperation programmes from “demand side”. 


Mr Linas Kojala, Moderator







Linas Kojala was named Director of Eastern Europe studies center, a leading think-tank in the Baltic countries, in 2016. In 2020, he also started a fellowship at Foreign Policy Research Institute (U.S.), where he has been working on security and economic issues of importance to the Baltic Sea region. He was also a Fulbright Fellow at Davis Center, Harvard University (2017-2018), and continues to be a non-resident expert at Davis Center Negotiation Task Force. 

Linas is also a columnist and a regular political commentator at Lithuanian TV and radio, as well as international outlets (including CNN, the Moscow Times, French, German, Dutch radio, etc.). His research interests include foreign affairs, U.S. foreign policy, European integration, security and NATO studies, information security. His book on Lithuania's accession to the European Union and current security challenges of Europe was among top-selling books in Lithuania in 2019. In 2019, he was voted third most influential Lithuanian public figure in a poll by the national media outlet DELFI.

Ms Francesca Aquaro, Twinning Team Leader of Unit C3 Institution Building, TAIEX, Twinning, Directorate-General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR)

Ms Fiona Ramsey, Deputy Head of Unit Development Financing and Effectiveness, Relations with Member States, Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development (DG DEVCO)

Fiona Ramsey, Deputy Head of Unit – Development Financing and Effectiveness, Relations with Member States, represents the Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development (DG DEVCO) at the event. Fiona is also still covering the role of Team Leader for Working Better Together in our unit and I am confident she is the right person for the purpose you mention in your message, having extensive experience in Joint Programming and Joint Implementation, both at DEVCO HQ and at country level.

Mr Tobias Jung, Director for Strategy and Communication of FIIAPP, Co-leader of Practitioners’ Network Public Sector Expertise Task Force “Findings on the use of Public Sector Expertise prepared by Practitioners’ Network”







Spanish and German nationality. Married, two children. Speaks Spanish, German, English, French and Catalan.

Professional experience

  • Director for Strategy and Communication (since July 2014)
  • Director for Economic Development and Environment (2013-2014)
  • Head of Brussels office (2010-2013)
  • Project officer 2007-2010

Former professional experience in the private sector

Education and training
Magister in International Studies – Spanish Diplomatic School (2005)

M.A. Latin American Studies – University of Cologne (2004)

Courses on the EU, international cooperation and development at Harvard Kennedy School, IESE and Spanish Diplomatic School.

Different articles on public sector expertise in international technical cooperation (cf. El País)

 “Perspective of PSE involvement in advising EU Partner Countries from “demand side”:

Mr David Bujiashvili, Director of EU Assistance Coordination and Sectoral Integration Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia







David Bujiashvili – PHD in Economics from the Georgian Scientific-Research State Institute of Economics as well as Masters degree in Economics specializing in International Economic Relations. More than 20 years working experience in Civil Service, mainly on European Integration and European Assistance Coordination issues. Since 2017 holding position of Director of EU Assistance Coordination and Sectorial Integration Department at the MFA and acting as a focal point of Twinning/Taiex and CBC Programmes. Before worked in different capacities under the Office of the State Minister of Georgia on European and Euro-Atlantic Integration including as an Advisor to the State Minister, Head of EU Assistance Department, Deputy Head of European integration department and etc.  Started his career at the Ministry of Trade and Foreign Economic Relations as a leading specialist  at the Donor Coordination Department in 1998.

Ms Iulia Ciumac, Head, Foreign Assistance Division, Directorate for Public Investment and Foreign Assistance, Ministry of Finance Moldova

Iulia Ciumac has joined the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Moldova in 2011 and has since then been actively involved in foreign financing, debt management and development cooperation. Beginning late 2017, following an ambitious central public administration reform in the R. of Moldova, the Ministry of Finance becomes the national foreign assistance coordination authority and Iulia CIUMAC is invited to lead the Division in charge of development aid coordination. Since then, Iulia is responsible for the coordination of both multilateral and bilateral foreign aid, at all stages (programming, implementation monitoring and evaluation). Iulia is the National Contact Point for Twinning and Taiex. Moreover, she is member of several CBC programming and monitoring committees as well as member of several project steering committees. Ms. CIUMAC is also nominated as member within the formal negotiation teams for the Financing Agreements to be concluded with the development partners and is acting as the national focal point for the donor community.

Mr Anatolii Sopilka, Head of the Division of International Cooperation Projects of the Projects Management Unit of the Center for Adaptation of the Civil Service to the Standards of the European Union, Ukraine






Chief Consultant of the Division of International Cooperation Projects, Projects Management Unit, Center for Adaptation of the Civil Service to the Standards of the European Union in Ukraine (2016-2019), Head of the Division (2019- ongoing)

Main responsibilities:

Managing of Twinning Programme Administration office in Ukraine (PAO) activities 

Organizing of communicative events in the sphere of professional development of civil servants

Coordinating of international technical assistance projects in the sphere of civil service

Coordinating of the NATO Programme for Professional Development of Civilian Personnel in Security and Defence Sector of Ukraine

Developing of the Annual National Program under the auspices of the Ukraine-NATO Commission

Educational background:

Finished/graduated Master of Public administration of Kyiv University of Dragomanov (2018)

Postgraduate student on political sciences of Kyiv University of Dragomanov (2019- ongoing)

Certified Gender Responsive Budgeting Trainer (2019)

Mr Serdar Sayer,  EU Affairs Expert, Directorate for EU Affairs, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Turkey







He graduated from Ankara University, Business Administration Department. He had experience in Turkish Electricity Transmission Corporation (2005-2009), on contract management of electricity transmission lines and power supplies under IBRD loans.
He worked for the ‘Promoting Registered Employment’ Project in Social Security Institution (2009-2011). At Ministry for EU Affairs, in Project Implementation Unit (2009-2011), he worked on EU funded projects by designing, taking part in the execution, monitoring and closure phases. He was responsible for protocol issues in Ministers’ Cabinet (2012-2017). He planned, arranged and executed comprehensive programs for the Minister on his official visits. He is now working on the programming phase of the twinning projects (2017-2020). He is executing their circulation, selection, monitoring and final report commenting. He worked as a National Expert at DG Energy in the European Commission (2019). He monitored developments in energy policy in the context of renewables policy for the EC decarbonisation strategy.

Ms Nida Salameh, EU Desk Officer, Assistant to the Head of Unit, Planning, Policy & Aid Coordination Unit, Office of the Prime Minister, Palestine






After graduating from high school, she enrolled at Birzeit University to study Chemistry. Arising from her love of math, she decided to take a course in the Business and Economics Faculty, whereupon she received the honors list, and subsequently in her second year, she committed to study Finance, which in retrospect was one of the greatest opportunities she has had in her life.  Afterward, she was hired as a part of a UK Department for International Development project (DFID) in the Palestinian Ministry of Finance - Budget department, as a financial analyst and administrative assistant.

She has earned her Master Degree with honor in Business Administration (MBA) from Birzeit University and she is currently the European Desk Officer in Prime’s Minister Office & Personal Assistant to Advisor to the Prime Minister Planning, Policy and Aid coordination.  

 Q & A