Procedure : 2018/2178(DEC)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : A8-0119/2019

Texts tabled :

A8-0119/2019

Debates :

PV 26/03/2019 - 12
CRE 26/03/2019 - 12

Votes :

PV 26/03/2019 - 13.17

Texts adopted :

P8_TA(2019)0258

REPORT     
PDF 184kWORD 60k
28.2.2019
PE 626.786v02-00 A8-0119/2019

on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training for the financial year 2017

(2018/2178(DEC))

Committee on Budgetary Control

Rapporteur: Petri Sarvamaa

1. PROPOSAL FOR A EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT DECISION

1. PROPOSAL FOR A EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT DECISION

on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training for the financial year 2017

(2018/2178(DEC))

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the final annual accounts of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training for the financial year 2017,

–  having regard to the Court of Auditors’ report on the annual accounts of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training for the financial year 2017, together with the Centre’s reply(1),

–  having regard to the statement of assurance(2) as to the reliability of the accounts and the legality and regularity of the underlying transactions provided by the Court of Auditors for the financial year 2017, pursuant to Article 287 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union,

–  having regard to the Council’s recommendation of 12 February 2019 on discharge to be given to the Centre in respect of the implementation of the budget for the financial year 2017 (05825/2019 – C8‑0068/2019),

–  having regard to Article 319 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union,

–  having regard to Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 966/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2012 on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union and repealing Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002(3), and in particular Article 208 thereof,

–    having regard to Regulation (EU, Euratom) 2018/1046 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 July 2018 on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union, amending Regulations (EU) No 1296/2013, (EU) No 1301/2013, (EU) No 1303/2013, (EU) No 1304/2013, (EU) No 1309/2013, (EU) No 1316/2013, (EU) No 223/2014, (EU) No 283/2014, and Decision No 541/2014/EU and repealing Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 966/2012(4), and in particular Article 70 thereof,

–  having regard to Regulation (EEC) No 337/75 of the Council of 10 February 1975 establishing a European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training(5), and in particular Article 12a thereof,

–  having regard to Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) No 1271/2013 of 30 September 2013 on the framework financial regulation for the bodies referred to in Article 208 of Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 966/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council(6), and in particular Article 108 thereof,

–  having regard to Rule 94 of and Annex IV to its Rules of Procedure,

–  having regard to the report of the Committee on Budgetary Control and the opinion of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (A8-0119/2019),

1.  Grants the Executive Director of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training discharge in respect of the implementation of the Centre’s budget for the financial year 2017;

2.  Sets out its observations in the resolution below;

3.  Instructs its President to forward this decision, and the resolution forming an integral part of it, to the Executive Director of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training, the Council, the Commission and the Court of Auditors, and to arrange for their publication in the Official Journal of the European Union (L series).

2. PROPOSAL FOR A EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT DECISION

on the closure of the accounts of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training for the financial year 2017

(2018/2178(DEC))

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the final annual accounts of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training for the financial year 2017,

–  having regard to the Court of Auditors’ report on the annual accounts of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training for the financial year 2017, together with the Centre’s reply(7),

–  having regard to the statement of assurance(8) as to the reliability of the accounts and the legality and regularity of the underlying transactions provided by the Court of Auditors for the financial year 2017, pursuant to Article 287 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union,

–  having regard to the Council’s recommendation of 12 February 2019 on discharge to be given to the Centre in respect of the implementation of the budget for the financial year 2017 (05825/2019 – C8‑0068/2019),

–  having regard to Article 319 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union,

–  having regard to Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 966/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2012 on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union and repealing Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002(9), and in particular Article 208 thereof,

–    having regard to Regulation (EU, Euratom) 2018/1046 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 July 2018 on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union, amending Regulations (EU) No 1296/2013, (EU) No 1301/2013, (EU) No 1303/2013, (EU) No 1304/2013, (EU) No 1309/2013, (EU) No 1316/2013, (EU) No 223/2014, (EU) No 283/2014, and Decision No 541/2014/EU and repealing Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 966/2012(10), and in particular Article 70 thereof,

–  having regard to Regulation (EEC) No 337/75 of the Council of 10 February 1975 establishing a European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training(11), and in particular Article 12a thereof,

–  having regard to Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) No 1271/2013 of 30 September 2013 on the framework financial regulation for the bodies referred to in Article 208 of Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 966/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council(12), and in particular Article 108 thereof,

–  having regard to Rule 94 of and Annex IV to its Rules of Procedure,

–  having regard to the report of the Committee on Budgetary Control and the opinion of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (A8-0119/2019),

1.  Approves the closure of the accounts of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training for the financial year 2017;

2.  Instructs its President to forward this decision to the Executive Director of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training, the Council, the Commission and the Court of Auditors, and to arrange for its publication in the Official Journal of the European Union (L series).

3. MOTION FOR A EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT RESOLUTION

with observations forming an integral part of the decision on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training for the financial year 2017

(2018/2178(DEC))

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to its decision on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training for the financial year 2017,

–  having regard to Rule 94 of and Annex IV to its Rules of Procedure,

–  having regard to the report of the Committee on Budgetary Control and the opinion of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (A8-0119/2019),

A.  whereas, according to its statement of revenue and expenditure(13), the final budget of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (the “Centre”) for the financial year 2017 was EUR 17 869 389, representing a slight decrease of 0,84 % compared to 2016; whereas the budget of the Centre derives mainly from the Union budget;

B.  whereas the Court of Auditors (the “Court”), in its report on the Centre’s annual accounts for the financial year 2017 (the “Court’s report”), has stated that it obtained reasonable assurances that the Centre’s annual accounts are reliable and that the underlying transactions are legal and regular;

Budget and financial management

1.  Notes with satisfaction that the budget monitoring efforts during the financial year 2017 resulted in a budget implementation rate of 99,95 %, representing a slight decrease of 0,04 % compared to 2016; takes note that the payment appropriations execution rate was at 89,66 %, representing a decrease of 4,89 % compared to the previous year;

Cancellation of carryovers

2.  Notes with concern that the cancellation of carryovers from 2016 to 2017 amounted to EUR 52 767, representing 5,06 % of the total amount carried over, an increase of 2,31 % in comparison to 2016;

Performance

3.  Notes with satisfaction that the Centre uses an exemplary performance measurement system that includes key performance indicators to assess the added value provided by its activities in the project, activity and organisational levels and other measures to improve its budget management;

4.  Appreciates the Centre’s continued high-quality work, providing research, analysis and technical advice to assist the development of European lifelong learning and Vocational Education and Training (VET) policies and stresses to this end the importance of ensuring adequate staff and financial resources allowing the Centre to implement its tasks;

5.  Welcomes the Centre’s focus on the development of competences and skills, in particular among the low-skilled, to support the objective of labour market inclusion through VET, work-based learning and apprenticeships and its contributions to the Erasmus+ Programme, the New Skills Agenda for Europe, Europass and Skills Panorama which has succeeded in reaching its primary target groups, policy makers and experts;

6.  Welcomes the Centre’s initiative on a new strand of work on digitalisation and the future of work and further welcomes the launch of the Centre’s CareersNet, its new network for research and lifelong guidance and career development;

7.  Welcomes the initiative of the Centre to reinforce its work on lifelong guidance and career development by setting up a network for research and cooperation in this field and by developing tools to integrate labour market intelligence into guidance;

8.  Notes the Centre’s close cooperation with the European Training Foundation and the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions, formalised in collaboration agreements; notes with appreciation that the Centre and the European Union Agency for Network and Information Security signed a service-level agreement which enables them to share conference facilities and storage space among other synergies; emphasises in this context that the Centre is one of the four Agencies on social policies; expresses its disappointment with the outcome in this respect of the Interinstitutional Working Group (IIWG) on decentralised agencies, as no specific proposals were developed to merge or co-locate agencies concentrating on related policy fields; asks the Centre to cooperate with the three other Agencies on social policies to investigate possible mergers;

9.  Acknowledges that the Centre has been taking measures in light of the observations and comments from the discharge authority related to the implementation of the budget for the financial year 2016 with the aim of further improving the Centre’s operations;

10.  Notes that the Centre was subjected to external evaluation as required by the financial rules, covering the period 2013 to 2016; notes that the final report of the evaluation should be received in 2018; calls on the Centre to report to the discharge authority on the results of that evaluation;

Staff policy

11.  Notes that, on 31 December 2017, the establishment plan was 93,48 % filled, with 86 officials or temporary agents (TAs) appointed out of 92 TAs and officials authorised under the Union budget (94 authorised posts in 2016); notes that in addition 26 contract agents and four seconded national experts were working for the Centre in 2017;

12.  Notes the departure of the Centre’s head of service for human resources in April 2017 as well as the departure of the Centre’s legal advisor and the resulting additional workload for the remaining staff; calls on the Centre to report to the discharge authority of any developments in this regard;

13.  Notes that the Centre has a dignity at work policy in place and that in 2017 a mandatory session on dignity at work and prevention of harassment was delivered, and furthermore workshops and counselling skill session were offered;

14.  Notes with regret from the Court’s report that two recruitment procedures for management positions were considered to be irregular; notes the Centre’s reply in this regard and expects that this concern will be addressed properly; urges the Centre to report to the discharge authority on the measures taken to respond to this observation;

15.  Notes with regret that the transparency of recruitment processes is not always fully given; therefore welcomes the suggestion of the Court to publish vacancy notices also on the website of the European Personnel Selection Office (EPSO) in order to increase publicity; takes note of the Centre’s reply that it already publishes some vacancies on EPSO and that translating all vacancy notices in the Union languages would considerably increase costs;

Procurement

16.  Notes from the Court´s report that by the end of 2017 the Centre was not yet using any of the tools launched by the Commission aimed to introduce a single solution for the electronic exchange of information with third parties participating in public procurement procedures (e-procurement); notes from the Centre’s report that it has planned to implement the necessary electronic measures in late 2018; calls on the Centre to report to the discharge authority on the progress made regarding this matter;

Prevention and management of conflicts of interests and transparency

17.  Notes the Centre’s existing measures and ongoing efforts to secure transparency, prevention and management of conflicts of interests, and whistle-blower protection; points out with concern, however, that the Centre does not publish the CVs of its senior management on its website, and that the Centre’s senior management, in-house experts and assistants declare potential conflicts of interest only as they occur according to Centre’s policy on the prevention and management of conflict of interests since 2014; calls on the Centre to report to the discharge authority on the measures taken in this regard;

18.  Reitarates its call for the Centre to make public the minutes of its management board meetings;

19.  Reiterates the need to urgently implement independent disclosure, advice and referral mechanisms with sufficient budgetary resources, in order to help reporting persons use the right channels to disclose their information on possible irregularities affecting the financial interests of the Union, while protecting their confidentiality and offering needed support and advice in line with the proposal for a directive on the protection of persons reporting on breaches of Union law (2018/0106 (COD)) which is currently under interinstitutional negotiations;

Internal audit

20.  Takes note that the internal audit service (IAS) conducted an audit on the Centre’s web-based services with the focus on Europass, Skills Panorama, Mobility Scoreboard and the European qualifications framework web pages, based on the IAS Strategic Audit Plan 2017 to 2019; welcomes the fact that the design and functioning of the Centre’s internal control system was stated as effective and efficient in relation to these tools;

o

o o

21.  Refers, for other observations of a cross-cutting nature accompanying its decision on discharge, to its resolution of ... 2019(14) on the performance, financial management and control of the agencies.

25.1.2019

OPINION of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs

for the Committee on Budgetary Control

on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training for the financial year 2017

(2018/2178(DEC))

Rapporteur for opinion: Marian Harkin

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Employment and Social Affairs calls on the Committee on Budgetary Control, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions into its motion for a resolution:

1.  Expresses its satisfaction that the Court of Auditors has declared the transactions underlying Cedefop’s annual accounts for the financial year 2017 to be legal and regular and that its financial position as at 31 December 2017 is fairly represented;

2.  Commends the high budget implementation rate in 2017 of 99.95%;

3.  Appreciates Cedefop’s continued high-quality work, providing research, analysis and technical advice to assist the development of European lifelong learning and Vocational Education and Training (VET) policies and stresses to this end the importance of ensuring adequate staff and financial resources allowing Cedefop to implement its tasks;

4.  Welcomes Cedefop’s focus on the development of competences and skills, in particular among the low-skilled, to support the objective of labour market inclusion through VET, work-based learning and apprenticeships and its contributions to the Erasmus+ Programme, the New Skills Agenda for Europe, Europass and Skills Panorama which has succeeded in reaching its primary target groups, policy makers and experts;

5.  Commends Cedefop’s continued co-operation with the other EU agencies that enables significant knowledge sharing and efficiency gains, in particular with the European Training Foundation (ETF);

6.  Welcomes Cedefop’s initiative on a new strand of work on digitalisation and the future of work and further welcomes the launch of Cedefop’s CareersNet, its new network for research and lifelong guidance and career development; urges Cedefop to increase the use of the EPSO portal for its vacancy postings;

7.  Acknowledges that Cedefop has been taking measures in light of the observations and comments from the discharge authority related to the implementation of the budget for the financial year 2016 with the aim of further improving Cedefop’s operations;

8.  Welcomes that Cedefop is in the process of joining the e-Tendering and e-Submission; notes that Cedefop is considering in what way it can introduce e-Invoicing;

9.  Regrets that the Court of Auditors considered that the management of two recruitment procedures for management positions was weak and that these procedures were considered irregular; acknowledges, however, that Cedefop is carrying out an in-depth assessment of both irregular recruitment procedures and is considering remedial measures both concerning the two procedures at stake and recruitment procedures in general to address the weaknesses identified by the Court;

10.  Reiterates the need to urgently implement independent disclosure, advice and referral mechanisms with sufficient budgetary resources, in order to help reporting persons use the right channels to disclose their information on possible irregularities affecting the financial interests of the Union, while protecting their confidentiality and offering needed support and advice in line with the directive on persons reporting on breaches of Union law which is currently under interinstitutional negotiations;

11.  Reitarates its call for Cedefop to make public the minutes of its management board meetings;

12.  Recommends, on the basis of the facts available, that discharge be granted to the Executive Director of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training with respect to the implementation of the Centre’s budget for the financial year 2017.

INFORMATION ON ADOPTION IN COMMITTEE ASKED FOR OPINION

Date adopted

23.1.2019

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

39

3

2

Members present for the final vote

Laura Agea, Guillaume Balas, David Casa, Ole Christensen, Michael Detjen, Martina Dlabajová, Lampros Fountoulis, Marian Harkin, Czesław Hoc, Agnes Jongerius, Agnieszka Kozłowska-Rajewicz, Jean Lambert, Jérôme Lavrilleux, Jeroen Lenaers, Verónica Lope Fontagné, Javi López, Miroslavs Mitrofanovs, Elisabeth Morin-Chartier, Emilian Pavel, João Pimenta Lopes, Georgi Pirinski, Marek Plura, Dennis Radtke, Terry Reintke, Robert Rochefort, Claude Rolin, Romana Tomc, Yana Toom, Marita Ulvskog, Jana Žitňanská

Substitutes present for the final vote

Georges Bach, Amjad Bashir, Heinz K. Becker, Lynn Boylan, Mircea Diaconu, Eduard Kukan, Christelle Lechevalier, Paloma López Bermejo, António Marinho e Pinto, Alex Mayer, Csaba Sógor, Flavio Zanonato

Substitutes under Rule 200(2) present for the final vote

Angélique Delahaye, Monika Smolková

FINAL VOTE BY ROLL CALL IN COMMITTEE ASKED FOR OPINION

39

+

ALDE

Martina Dlabajová, Marian Harkin, António Marinho e Pinto, Robert Rochefort, Yana Toom

ECR

Amjad Bashir, Czesław Hoc, Jana Žitňanská

GUE/NGL

Lynn Boylan, Paloma López Bermejo

PPE

Georges Bach, Heinz K. Becker, David Casa, Angélique Delahaye, Agnieszka Kozłowska-Rajewicz, Eduard Kukan, Jérôme Lavrilleux, Jeroen Lenaers, Verónica Lope Fontagné, Elisabeth Morin-Chartier, Marek Plura, Dennis Radtke, Claude Rolin, Csaba Sógor, Romana Tomc

S&D

Guillaume Balas, Ole Christensen, Michael Detjen, Agnes Jongerius, Javi López, Alex Mayer, Emilian Pavel, Georgi Pirinski, Monika Smolková, Marita Ulvskog, Flavio Zanonato

VERTS/ALE

Jean Lambert, Miroslavs Mitrofanovs, Terry Reintke

3

-

ALDE

Mircea Diaconu

ENF

Christelle Lechevalier

NI

Lampros Fountoulis

2

0

EFDD

Laura Agea

GUE/NGL

João Pimenta Lopes

Key to symbols:

+  :  in favour

-  :  against

0  :  abstention

INFORMATION ON ADOPTION IN COMMITTEE RESPONSIBLE

Date adopted

20.2.2019

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

19

1

1

Members present for the final vote

Nedzhmi Ali, Inés Ayala Sender, Zigmantas Balčytis, Dennis de Jong, Tamás Deutsch, Martina Dlabajová, Ingeborg Gräßle, Jean-François Jalkh, Wolf Klinz, Monica Macovei, Georgi Pirinski, José Ignacio Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra, Petri Sarvamaa, Claudia Schmidt, Bart Staes, Marco Valli, Derek Vaughan, Tomáš Zdechovský

Substitutes present for the final vote

Karin Kadenbach, Marian-Jean Marinescu

Substitutes under Rule 200(2) present for the final vote

Petra Kammerevert

FINAL VOTE BY ROLL CALL IN COMMITTEE RESPONSIBLE

19

+

ALDE

Nedzhmi Ali, Martina Dlabajová, Wolf Klinz

ECR

Monica Macovei

GUE/NGL

Dennis de Jong

PPE

Tamás Deutsch, Ingeborg Gräßle, Marian-Jean Marinescu, José Ignacio Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra, Petri Sarvamaa, Claudia Schmidt, Tomáš Zdechovský

S&D

Inés Ayala Sender, Zigmantas Balčytis, Karin Kadenbach, Petra Kammerevert, Georgi Pirinski, Derek Vaughan

VERTS/ALE

Bart Staes

1

-

ENF

Jean-François Jalkh

1

0

EFDD

Marco Valli

Key to symbols:

+  :  in favour

-  :  against

0  :  abstention

(1)

OJ C 434, 30.11.2018, p. 43.

(2)

OJ C 434, 30.11.2018, p. 43.

(3)

OJ L 298, 26.10.2012, p. 1.

(4)

OJ L 193, 30.7.2018, p. 1.

(5)

OJ L 39, 13.2.1975, p. 1.

(6)

OJ L 328, 7.12.2013, p. 42.

(7)

OJ C 434, 30.11.2018, p. 43.

(8)

OJ C 434, 30.11.2018, p. 43.

(9)

OJ L 298, 26.10.2012, p. 1.

(10)

OJ L 193, 30.7.2018, p. 1.

(11)

OJ L 39, 13.2.1975, p. 1.

(12)

OJ L 328, 7.12.2013, p. 42.

(13)

OJ C 84, 17.3.2017, p. 1.

(14)

Texts adopted, P8_TA-PROV(2019)0000.

Last updated: 12 March 2019Legal notice