EU mis-spending - It's 'Carry On Squandering'

05-Nov-2013 @ 9:0

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Anthea McIntyre Anthea McIntyre

Anthea McIntyre Anthea McIntyre

Misspending and waste of European Union moneyis continuing to get worse, the latest report by the bloc'sauditors reveals today.

The annual Court of Auditors report, published thismorning, refuses for the 19th year in a row to grant the EU accounts aclean bill of health.

Disturbingly, it shows that the rate of questionablespending - the so-called error rate - has increased substantially from 3.9 percent to 4.8 per cent, the fourth increase in succession.

Some 0.3 per cent of the increase is blamed on newsampling methods, but Conservative MEPs said the underlying increase remained"shameful and unacceptable".

Rural spending was once more the most problematic area ofexpenditure, with 7.9 percent of the €15 billion rural development expendituremade in error - approximately £1 billion.

Some 6.8 percent of the €40.7 billion spent on regionalpolicy, energy and transport was also spent in error. That totals morethan £2 billion.

Philip Bradbourn MEP, Conservative spokesman on Budgetarycontrol, said: "Another year, another story of lax monitoring andshambolic control."

"I understand full well that much of themis-spending occurs when member states fail to exercise proper supervision ofspending within their borders, but the fact is that the EU must accept ultimateresponsibility for what happens to the money it dishes out.

"Every year we are told the Commissionis serious about tackling the problem. Every year it gets stillworse. It is shameful to the EU's integrity and unacceptable to its taxpayers."

"If you found misappropriation andmis-spending on this scale in a commercial business - or in aproperly-accountable public administration - there would be sackings all round.In Brussels, it's 'Carry on Squandering'."

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