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European Commission





Since 2012, the European Commission adopts yearly a 'Worldwide Decision' that covers all humanitarian aid actions, which DG ECHO anticipates to fund as explained in DG ECHO's Annual Strategy. Through this document it allocates the necessary funds for the implementation of humanitarian aid actions in the field of:


  • disasters (natural hazards) and human-induced humanitarian crises
  • large scale emergency or a sudden onset
  • small scale disaster
  • disaster preparedness
  • epidemics
  • enhancing local capacities to cope and respond, increasing resilience and reducing vulnerability
  • strengthening the global humanitarian preparedness and response capacity
  • increasing awareness, understanding of and support for humanitarian issues
  • high-quality training for humanitarian professionals
  • transport services
  • provision of expertise to assist policy development and reinforcing networking between humanitarian non-governmental organisations
  • contributing to the resilience


Once adopted, the Worldwide Decision is published in APPEL and under the section "Funding for Humanitarian Aid" of the DG ECHO website.


The Worldwide Decision starts on 1st January of the year.


The Worldwide Decision contains the yearly budget for Humanitarian Aid and may be amended in case additional funds are allocated.


The Worldwide Decision defines the needs to be addressed and indicatively allocates the funds per region and country.


The Decision indicates the objectives of humanitarian actions, the amounts of the Union contribution, the methods of implementation and the flexibility clause. The Flexibility clause allows for the possibility to reallocate part of the funds among the different objectives of the decision, and to allocate additional budget (up to 20% of the amount) without a new decision.


Its Annex (including the Appendices) covers the actions constituting the humanitarian aid operational priorities of the Union for the year.


  • Grants - defines the estimated global budgetary envelope reserved for grants and the types of actions to be implemented under direct management;
  • Procurement - indicates the overall budgetary allocation reserved for procurement contracts and the types of actions to be financed under direct management;
  • Actions implemented under indirect management - defines the types of actions to be implemented under indirect management; and 
  • Other actions or expenditure – indicates other types of actions to be financed.
  • Appendix I : includes the allocations by actions in euro 
  • Appendix II: includes the indicative allocations by regions/countries


In the context of the Worldwide Decision, DG ECHO prepares and publishes 'Humanitarian Implementation Plans (HIPs)', which provide more detailed information on the operational priorities identified within each country/region of operation.


The HIP is composed of 5 sections:


  • The context contains an overview of the results of the needs assessment carried out and identifies the crisis affecting the concerned region and countries and its likely evolution.
  • The humanitarian needs section describes the people in need of humanitarian assistance, with the indication of number and categories of affected people, their geographical location and the most acute humanitarian needs, by sector and, sometimes, by country / area.
  • The humanitarian response refers to the response that is envisaged at local, country, international level and presents possible operational constraints. 
  • Humanitarian - development - peace nexus describes how development operations may complement each other and find synergies. 
  • Envisaged DG ECHO response defines DG ECHO’s expected response and results of the humanitarian operations to be financed. 


The HIP is accompanied by a Technical Annex, which is divided into three sections providing Financial, Administrative and Operational information.


Section 1 “Contacts” contains addresses of the ECHO Operational Unit in charge and the ECHO contact persons at the HQ and field level.


Section 2 “Financial information” establishes the indicative amount allocated by the HIP and describes how this amount is divided among the different objectives and budget lines.


Section 3 "Proposal assessment" provides fundamental information to prepare the proposal as follows:


  • Definition of basic implementation rules (co-financing, financial support to third parties, eligibility of office costs and possibility of alternative arrangements); 
  • Administrative information on how to present the proposal (specific needs to be addressed in the assessment round, budget available, dates and formats for submission, duration of actions, etc.);
  • Assessment criteria to be used, such as relevance and feasibility of the proposed action, capacity of the partner, quality of needs assessment and logframe, cost efficiency, etc.; and
  • Description of specific operational guidelines (to be read in parallel with the Policy Annex of the HIP): here ECHO provides a more detailed description of priority activities within a specific sector, identification of target groups, methodologies of implementation (e.g. use of cash) and possible horizontal issues (e.g. reinforce local capacities, advocate for the respect of IHL, etc.).


The Technical Policies Annex is the same for all the HIPs and outlines the general principles, policy framework, assistance modalities, cross-cutting issues as well as thematic guidelines that need to be taken into account by DG ECHO partners in the design of humanitarian operations supported by DG ECHO.

Disaster preparedness needs and planned interventions are integrated in all the sections of the HIP and its Technical Annex (for more information go to Disaster preparedness).


The HIP is not a static document. It can be revised and updated, in case additional needs and/or funding appear during the year.

In the new version of the HIP, a section 0 will be added at the beginning of the document, giving an overview on the state of the implementation of the HIP, identifying the new issues to be tackled and informing the partners on the planned procedure for the allocation of funds.

This revision procedure allows DG ECHO to maintain, in the same document, a global and updated view about the current situation on the field.

NB Since all the communications concerning the publication/updates of the HIPs will be done electronically, DG ECHO asks the partners to verify the e-mail addresses listed in APPEL in order to ensure they receive this information.


Such meetings take place at field level. Additional meetings may be organised at ECHO offices in Brussels when needed. The purpose of these meetings is either to discuss with partners the content of the future HIPs or to present the final version of the HIPs. Partners will find information on those meetings at ECHO website.