PEACE IV Programme

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The PEACE IV Programme is a unique funding instrument across all 28 member states. It was created in 1995 as a result of the European Union’s desire to support developments in the Northern Ireland peace process following over two decades worth of conflict during which 3,500 people were killed and some 37,000 injured. Financed through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) the programme operates on a cross-border basis in Northern Ireland and the Border Region of Ireland.

As the peace process has evolved the programme has played an integral role in reinforcing the move towards a more tolerant and peaceful society. It has funded tens of thousands of projects which have involved hundreds of thousands of people. These projects have helped to heal division, promote trust and tolerance and create a legacy of EU-supported reconciliation across the region.

Significant progress has been made however divisions between communities are still very evident. Issues around the expression of identity often result in community tensions and increased polarisation. Within this context there still remains a real need for the region to address a number of key issues in order to support the overall peace process. These include more efforts to develop and deepen reconciliation between divided communities; increase tolerance and respect to reduce the levels of sectarianism and racism; promote increased community cohesion; and address the legacy of the past.

The European Parliament passed a resolution in November 2014 on the peace process that underlines the urgent need to encourage further reconciliation and help stimulate greater economic and social development across Northern Ireland and the Border Region of Ireland.

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