ABSORPTION OF STRUCTURAL FUNDS IN THE INITIAL PERIOD OF POLAND'S MEMBERSHIP IN THE EUROPEAN UNION
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The aim of the paper is to analyze and assess selected factors influencing the absorption of structural funds in the initial period of Poland's membership in the EU (2004-2005) with a special emphasis on funds allocated for the realization of 'The Integrated Regional Operational Programme' (IROP) in the Mazovia voivodeship. The author examines the most important factors influencing the absorption of the structural funds and conducts a comparative analysis of the allocation structure of structural funds according to operational programmes and areas of intervention and a nominal level of their absorption all over the country and in the Mazovia voivodeship. Then the author analyzes content-related and technical evaluations of all applications carried out by a panel of experts. The results of the analyses were juxtaposed in the tables and supported by a descriptive evaluation which show a very low level of nominal absorption in the initial period of Poland's membership in the EU and measured by the value of payments to beneficiaries transferred from programme accounts which at the end of July 2005 amounted to 1,74% of the value of all commitments in Poland for the period 2004-2006. The low nominal absorption and a low content-related value of the projects create serious threats for effective absorption. The method used by the author to assess the nominal absorption within IROP allows him to carry out parallel research within specific operational programmes.
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