Today, the European Commission signed two direct grants worth €600 million to support Syrian refugees and host communities in Turkey in the areas of education and health.
Since March this year, the EU has mobilised more than €2 billion out of its total budget of €3 billion under the Facility for Refugees in Turkey. The Facility supports the implementation of both the EU-Turkey Joint Action Plan and the EU-Turkey Statement and is designed to address the most critical needs of Syrian refugees and host communities living in Turkey today.
Johannes Hahn, Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations said: "With the two direct grants signed today, almost half a million Syrian children will gain access to compulsory education. EU assistance will also provide the Syrian refugees with access to much needed health care services. This confirms the European Union's continuous commitment to improving the conditions of refugees living in Turkey. We will work hard to continue delivery and should sign further contracts in the areas of education, health, municipal infrastructure and socio-economic support to refugees in Turkey over the months to come."
The €600 million grants - €300 million for education and €300 million for health - are funded under the €1.415 billion Special Measure that was adopted by the Commission at the end of July. They help the Turkish authorities cover operational costs and access to compulsory education and healthcare services for Syrian refugees and their children.
The grants will serve to reimburse the Ministries of Education and Health for costs incurred in their efforts to integrate Syrian pupils and students into the Turkish education system, and to ensure Syrian refugees in Turkey have access to health care. The direct grant for education should enable around 500,000 Syrian students to receive education in the Turkish language. The direct grant in the area of health should ensure the provision of comprehensive health care for refugees in Turkey.
Details on projects funded under the Facility for Refugees in Turkey can be found at
The Facility for Refugees in Turkey was set up in response to the European Council's call for significant additional funding to support refugees in Turkey.
The Facility has a budget of €3 billion for 2016-2017. This is made up of €1 billion from the EU budget, and €2 billion from the EU Member States. All Member States have sent in their contribution certificates for the €2 billion they pledged.
So far, 34 projects have been contracted worth €1.252 billion, out of which €467 million has been disbursed. The total allocated for implementation under the Facility for Refugees in Turkey on humanitarian and non-humanitarian actions now stands at €2.239 billion.
The Facility provides a joint coordination mechanism, designed to ensure that the needs of refugees and host communities are addressed in a comprehensive and coordinated manner. Funding under the Facility supports refugees in the country, it is therefore not a funding for Turkey. The support seeks to improve conditions for refugees in Turkey as part of the EU's comprehensive approach to addressing the refugee crisis inside and outside the EU.