The Gyrotech project in Hungary received substantial media attention in the beginning of November when it was widely used as an illustration of wasteful EU spending.
For the 2007-2013 financing period EU structural funding accounts for EUR 347 billion (GBP 291 billion). The funds are jointly managed with the member states who choose the majority of the projects and are directly responsible for about 80% of the money. EU spending through the Structural Funds is subject to much closer scrutiny than national/regional spending. Projects are subject to a triple audit check – national audits, Commission audits and European Court of Auditors' checks. Whenever incorrect spending is detected, the Commission can claim the money back.
Across the entire EU budget, for the financial planning periods of 1994-1999 and 2000-2006 a total of 8.4 billion Euro (GBP 7 billion) will be clawed back, based on figures of September 2010. Recoveries and financial corrections confirmed or decided in 2009 rose to EUR 3.3 billion (GBP 2.8 billion), compared to EUR 2.9 billion (GBP 2.3 billion) in 2008, meaning that the EU budget is better protected. Of these EUR 3.3 billion, 2.5 billion (GBP 2.1 billion) concern the structural funds.
For more information, please contact the London press office on 020 7973 1971.
Please note: all amounts expressed in sterling are for information purposes only.