Impact of the action plan to strengthen the Commission's supervisory role under shared management of structural actions

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Date : 18/02/2010

In 2008, following the European Court of Auditors ("Court") Annual Report of 2006, the Commission adopted an action plan to strengthen its supervision of Member States in relation to shared management of structural actions ("Action Plan"). The objective of the Action Plan was to reinforce actions by the Commission to address the high level of errors in reimbursements for structural actions and weaknesses in the Member States management and control systems ("systems"). The Action Plan set out 37 actions, under 10 main headings (see Annex 4). Further measures and programmes were added during 2008 and 2009. Therefore, the supervisory activity by the Commission went beyond the scope initially stated in the Action Plan.

The main results were presented to the Budgetary Control Committee of the European Parliament by Commissioners Samecki and Špidla on 2 December 2009. The reports of 5 November 2008, 3 February 2009 and 28 October 2009 provide further detail.

This Communication gives an assessment of the results and the first impact on the implementation of the Action Plan, as well as, on the implementation of additional actions by the Commission under the Joint Audit Strategy for Structural Actions ("Audit Strategy"). The assessment looks beyond simple quantitative indicators, such as error rates or amounts recovered, as it is difficult to tie such measures to individual actions. For example, guidance and training help to understand better legislative requirements but, they do not have a directly quantifiable impact in the short-term. Therefore, an appropriate mix of qualitative and quantitative indicators is used.   

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