Press conference by Lazaros S. Lazarou, Member of the European Court of Auditors, on "Are tools in place to monitor the effectiveness of European Social Fund spending on older workers?"

Type: Complete press conference   Référence: I076381   Durée: 25:14  Lieu: Brussels - International Press Centre
On 5 March 2013, Lazaros S. Lazarou, Member of the European Court of Auditors, gave a press conference on the European Court of Auditors’ Special Report No 25/2012 “Have tools been put in place to verify the effectiveness of European Social Fund spending on older workers?”; the increase in the employment rate of older workers is one of the EU’s strategic objectives. However, the Court’s report has shown that neither Member States nor the Commission are able to determine how many older workers have acquired new qualifications, or found or kept a job after benefitting from an action financed by the European Social Fund (ESF). Most Member States visited during the audit have not put in place the tools required to provide relevant and reliable information in this area.

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HEURE DESCRIPTION DUREE
00:00:00 Statement by Lazaros S. Lazarou, Member of the European Court of Auditors, (in ENGLISH) introducing his team and presenting the structure of his presentation on the European Court of Auditors’ Special Report No 25/2012 “Have tools been put in place to verify the effectiveness of European Social Fund spending on older workers?”; the Lisbon agenda defines older workers as workers aged between 55 and 64; furthermore, the European Social Fund is a key financial instrument which is available to the EU to support Member States in the field of employment; the European Court of Auditors examined the question of whether the Commission and Member States have actually put in place the appropriate instruments to monitor the effectiveness of funding from the Social Fund for older workers, a key target group in various EU multi-annual strategies; the conclusions of the Court are as follows: despite the fact that the increase in the employment rate of older workers is part of the EU’s strategic objectives, it seems that neither the managing authorities nor the Commission are able to specify how many older workers have been able to obtain major qualifications or keep their job after benefitting from an action financed by the European Social Fund (ESF); it is difficult to demonstrate the results of the European Social Fund for a number of reasons: weaknesses in the design of operational programmes, problems with recording data, difficulties relating to monitoring activities and, lastly, the fact that the analysis conducted by the Commission of the different systems put in place is not performance-based; on the Court’s recommendations: the Commission should: 1) ask Member States to design their operational programmes in such a way as to make it possible to measure the performance of ESF spending; 2) ask Member States to design monitoring and evaluation systems making it possible to measure and explain, at appropriate intervals, the extent to which all of the defined target values have been achieved; 3) collect consistent and reliable data from Member States in order to be able to provide appropriate information about the resources mobilised and the results obtained by the ESF; 4) carry out an in-depth analysis of the issues surrounding performance as part of the evaluation and monitoring of Member States’ management and control systems. 00:16:27
00:16:27 Q&A session 00:08:47
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