EC to Recover €230M of CAP Expenditure from Member States03 May 2013
EU - A total of €230 million of EU agricultural policy funds, unduly spent by Member States, is being claimed back by the European Commission under the so-called clearance of accounts procedure.
However, because some of these amounts have already been recovered from the Member States the financial impact of today's decision will be some €227 million. This money returns to the EU budget because of non-compliance with EU rules or inadequate control procedures on agricultural expenditure. Member States are responsible for paying out and checking expenditure under the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), and the Commission is required to ensure that Member States have made correct use of the funds.
Main financial corrections
Under this latest decision, funds will be recovered from 14 Member States: Belgium, Czech Republic, Germany, Ireland, Greece, Spain, Lithuania, Hungary, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Slovakia and the United Kingdom. The most significant individual corrections are:
- € 83.6 million charged to Greece for non-compliant reduction of the minimum yield for the dried grapes;
- € 79.9 million charged to Poland for deficiencies in the check of the initial application and in the approval of the business plan for the Semi-subsistence farms measure;
- € 24.0 million (financial impact : €23.9 million) charged to Greece for weaknesses in flock registers and on-the-spot checks for animal premiums;
- € 10.3 million charged to UK for weakness in identification of animals and in on-the-spot checks for the animal premiums.
Member States are responsible for managing most CAP payments, mainly via their paying agencies. They are also in charge of controls, for example verifying the farmer's claims for direct payments.
The Commission carries out over 100 audits every year, verifying that Member State controls and responses to shortcomings are sufficient, and has the power to claw back funds in arrears if the audits show that Member State management and control is not good enough to guarantee that EU funds have been spent properly.
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