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17/01/2019   Annual Report of the European Court of Auditors Presented at the National Audit Office

Today, member of the European Court of Auditors (ECA) Rimantas Šadžius visited the National Audit Office and met with the Auditor General Arūnas Dulkys and other employees of the institution. During the meeting, he gave a presentation on the results of the Annual report on EU spending for 2017.

“The ECA has submitted a qualified opinion regarding the reliability of the financial position of the European Union (EU) for 2017 – just like during the previous year, the income of 2017 was both legitimate and managed appropriately. The identified level of EU budget errors in payment continues to decrease,” said Rimantas Šadžius during the presentation.

It should be noted that payments were both legitimate and regular, except in the case of reimbursement of expenses. Much of the audited expenses were not affected by a significant level of errors. In 2017 it was reduced to 2.4 percent, as compared to 3.1 percent in 2016 and 3.8 percent in 2015.

There was also a presentation on the ECA special audit report regarding the fight against fraud in EU spending. The audit found that the European Commission (EC) is not sufficiently informed about the nature, scope and causes of fraud. It was also observed that, following administrative investigation, OLAF (the European Anti-Fraud Office) engaged in criminal persecution in less than half of cases and recovered less than one-third of all funds. Furthermore, the European Public Prosecutor’s Office, which would allow for criminal persecution, is not yet operational.

For this reason, the ECA recommends the EC to cooperate with member states in developing a reliable system for providing information on, as well as analysing, cases of fraud, which would also publish information on the nature, scope and causes thereof.

During the meeting, Rimantas Šadžius also introduced the ECA Work Programme for 2019. Top priorities for 2019 specified in the Programme include such areas as investment in green energy, defence, EU investment in culture, EU state aid to banks, and other audits.

The ECA is an independent external auditor of EU finances responsible for facilitating the improvement of the management of EU finances, and acting as an independent guardian of the financial interests of EU citizens. The National Audit Office and the ECA are engaged in close cooperation and the sharing of professional knowledge.

 

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Last updated on 13 May 2019

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