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Thursday, 25 March 2010

Signing off the 2008 budget: MEPs' proposals for better monitoring of spending

The European Commission's budgetary management for 2008 should be formally approved, decided Parliament's Budgetary Control Committee on Tuesday in its vote on the "budget discharge procedure". By contrast, the Council's budget discharge should be postponed, said MEPs, citing a continuing lack of cooperation. Parliament's spending for 2008 should be approved, although some internal controls should be better. The committee cited significant improvements in the control of agriculture spending by the European Commission but also continuing weaknesses in other policy areas. Though Council had been more forthcoming with information, MEPs were still not entirely satisfied and therefore proposed that the full Parliament postpone giving discharge until October. To improve the control of EU spending, the committee not only voted on whether to give the institutions their discharge or not, but also adopted resolutions with recommendations on how to monitor spending better.  Overall, MEPs say control of EU spending could be made easier by simplification and better cooperation with Member States.

Source: European Parliament