Procedure : 2018/2184(DEC)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : A8-0122/2019

Texts tabled :

A8-0122/2019

Debates :

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

Votes :

PV 26/03/2019 - 13.16

Texts adopted :

P8_TA(2019)0257

REPORT     
PDF 182kWORD 67k
28.2.2019
PE 626.785v02-00 A8-0122/2019

on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union (CdT) for the financial year 2017

(2018/2184(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 Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union for the financial year 2017

(2018/2184(DEC))

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the final annual accounts of the Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union for the financial year 2017,

–  having regard to the Court of Auditors’ report on the annual accounts of the Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union 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 – C8‑0074/2019),

–  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 Council Regulation (EC) No 2965/94 of 28 November 1994 setting up a Translation Centre for bodies of the European Union(5), and in particular Article 14 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 Culture and Education (A8-0122/2019),

1.  Grants the Director of the Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union 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 Director of the Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union, 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 Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union for the financial year 2017

(2018/2184(DEC))

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the final annual accounts of the Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union for the financial year 2017,

–  having regard to the Court of Auditors’ report on the annual accounts of the Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union 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 – C8‑0074/2019),

–  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 Council Regulation (EC) No 2965/94 of 28 November 1994 setting up a Translation Centre for bodies of the European Union(11), and in particular Article 14 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 Culture and Education (A8-0122/2019),

1.  Approves the closure of the accounts of the Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union for the financial year 2017;

2.  Instructs its President to forward this decision to the Director of the Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union, 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 Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union for the financial year 2017

(2018/2184(DEC))

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to its decision on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union 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 Culture and Education (A8-0122/2019),

A.  whereas, according to its statement of revenue and expenditure(13), the final budget of the Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union (“the Centre”) for the financial year 2017 was EUR 49 429 100, representing a decrease of 2,27 % compared to 2016; whereas 88,93 % of the Centre’s budget derives from direct contributions from institutions, other agencies and bodies;

B.  whereas the Court of Auditors (“the Court”), in its report on the annual accounts of the Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union for the financial year 2017 (“the Court’s report”), has stated that it has 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 that the budget monitoring efforts during the financial year 2017 resulted in a budget implementation rate of 93,12 %, representing an increase of 3,75 % compared to the previous year; observes that the payment appropriations execution rate was 85,40 %, representing an increase of 3,21% compared to the previous year;

Cancellation of carryovers

2.  Notes with concern the relatively high level of cancelled carryovers in 2017 amounting to EUR 317 986,20 and still representing 8,76 % of the total amount carried over, despite a decrease of 1,34 % in comparison to 2016;

Performance

3.  Notes that the Centre uses input and output indicators as Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to assess the results of its activities and several indicators to enhance its budget management; invites the Centre to further develop the KPIs to assess the outcome and impact of its activities in order to gain qualitative advice on how to provide more added value for the Centre’s outputs and improve the Centre’s business model;

4.  Notes that the Centre has started revising the ex-ante evaluation of programmes and activities in line with the guidance provided by the Commission and that input and output indicators are now in place in the Centre’s work programmes;

5.  Notes that the implementation rate of the Centre’s amended work programme for 2017 was 87,7 %;

6.  Notes with appreciation the impact of the new pricing structure for the translation of documents, which corresponded to a saving of EUR 3,2 million for the Centre’s clients in 2017, while the Centre’s revenues remained stable during 2017 notwithstanding the impact of the new pricing structure;

7.  Welcomes the cooperation agreement signed with the European School Luxembourg II (EEL2), bringing the Centre’s portfolio to 65 clients at the end of 2017;

8.  Notes with satisfaction that the Centre implemented two actions to share resources with other agencies on overlapping tasks through the EU Agencies Network: a shared services catalogue, which lists all the services that could be shared by the agencies and a joint procurement portal, on which the agencies’ procurement plans are shared;

9.  Welcomes the Centre’s efforts to streamline multilingualism into its products, acknowledged by the European Ombudsman in 2017 by awarding the Centre together with the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) and the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA) with the Ombudsman’s Award for Good Administration in the category “Excellence in citizen/customer focused services delivery”, for their jointly developed innovative project that facilitates the translation management of multilingual websites;

10.  Encourages the Centre in its commitment to make available to the Union institutions the new version of the IATE (InterActive Terminology for Europe) by the end of 2018, ensuring that the interinstitutional terminology database keeps pace with innovation;

11.  Welcomes the external evaluation of the Centre’s business model, carried out in 2017; calls on the Centre to report to the discharge authority on the outcome of the final evaluation;

Staff policy

12.  Notes that, on 31 December 2017, the establishment plan was 96,9 % executed, with 189 officials or temporary agents appointed out of 195 temporary agents and officials authorised under the Union budget (compared with 197 authorised posts in 2016); notes that, in addition, 26 contract agents worked for the Centre in 2017;

13.  Insists on the adequate geographical distribution of its staff as well as of its middle and high management;

14.  Notes that the Centre adopted a policy on protecting the dignity of the person and preventing harassment;

Procurement

15.  Notes that, according to the Court´s report, by the end of 2017 the Centre had not yet been using all of the tools launched by the Commission aimed at introducing a single solution for the electronic exchange of information with third parties participating in public procurement procedures (e-procurement); calls on the Centre to introduce all of the necessary tools to manage procurement procedures and report to the discharge authority on their implementation;

Prevention and management of conflicts of interest and transparency

16.  Notes that the Centre opted for the publication of only declarations of interests, without CVs, due to the management problems associated with the size of its management board (approximately 130 members and alternate members); notes that the director’s CV and declaration of interests are published on the Centre’s website; calls on the Centre to report to the discharge authority on the measures taken in this regard;

17.  Notes that, according to the Court’s report, there is a need to strengthen the accounting officer’s independence by making him directly responsible to the Centre’s director and management board; welcomes the steps already taken in order to ensure the independence of the accounting officer;

18.  Notes that, although the Centre is not fee financed, it depends on revenue received from its clients, who are represented on the Centre’s management board, and that there is therefore a risk of conflicts of interests regarding the pricing of the Centre’s products which could be solved if the Commission collected the fees on behalf of the Centre’s clients and would prompt the Centre to be mainly funded from the Union budget; calls on the Centre to report to the discharge authority on measures taken in order to mitigate such a risk;

Internal Controls

19.  Notes that the Commission’s Internal Audit Service (IAS) performed an onsite risk assessment in 2017 covering all operational and support activities of the Centre; notes that the result of the risk assessment was the IAS Strategic Internal Audit Plan 2018-2020, which was approved by the management board;

20.  Acknowledges that the follow-up on the outstanding recommendations of the audit on Business Continuity Management and the audit on the Management of the Workflow for Translation of Documents concluded that all recommendations have been adequately and effectively implemented;

Other comments

21.  Reaffirms its strong commitment to multilingualism in the European Union as one of the fundamental prerequisites for the proper functioning of the Union’s democratic system; points to the role that the Translation Centre plays in delivering high-quality translation and language services;

22.  Notes with concern that, according to the Court’s report, several agencies and bodies make increasing use of other solutions instead of the Centre’s translation services, meaning that the Centre’s capacity is underused, that there is a duplication of systems and that the Centre’s business model and continuity could be at risk; invites the Centre and the Commission to proactively consider solutions to the issue at hand and improvements to its business model in order to be able to mitigate those risks;

23.  Regrets the fact that the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) decided, on 26 April 2018, to terminate the translation arrangement it concluded with the Centre, despite its legal obligation to avail of the services of the Centre, as provided for in Article 148 of Regulation (EU) 2017/1001 of the European Parliament and of the Council(14), which established the EUIPO; takes note of the legal action brought before the General Court by the Centre on 6 July 2018; calls on the Centre to keep the discharge authority updated on the developments of the legal proceedings;

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24.  Refers, for other observations of a cross-cutting nature accompanying its decision on discharge, to its resolution of ... 2019(15) on the performance, financial management and control of the agencies.

23.1.2019

OPINION of the Committee on Culture and Education

for the Committee on Budgetary Control

on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the Translation Centre for the Bodies of the European Union for the financial year 2017

(2018/2184(DEC))

Rapporteur for opinion: Bogdan Andrzej Zdrojewski

SUGGESTIONS

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

1.  Reaffirms its strong commitment to multilingualism in the European Union as one of the fundamental prerequisites for the proper functioning of the Union’s democratic system; points to the role that the Translation Centre plays in delivering high-quality translation and language services;

2.  Notes with appreciation the impact of the new pricing structure for the translation of documents, which corresponded to a saving of EUR 3,2 million for the Centre’s clients in 2017, while the Centre’s revenues remained stable during 2017 notwithstanding the impact of the new pricing structure;

3.  Welcomes the cooperation agreement signed with the European School Luxembourg II (EEL2), bringing the Centre’s portfolio to 65 clients at the end of 2017;

4.   Acknowledges that the follow-up on the outstanding recommendations of the audit on Business Continuity Management and the audit on the Management of the Workflow for Translation of Documents concluded that all recommendations have been adequately and effectively implemented;

5.  Notes that the Centre has started revising the ex-ante evaluation of programmes and activities in line with the guidance provided by the Commission and that input and output indicators are now in place in the Centre’s work programmes;

6.  Encourages the Centre in its commitment to make available to the Union institutions the new version of the IATE (InterActive Terminology for Europe) by the end of 2018, ensuring that the interinstitutional terminology database keeps pace with innovation; insists on the adequate geographical distribution of its staff as well as of its middle and high management;

7.  Recognises that the Court of Auditors has a heavy workload; asks the Court, nonetheless, to publish its own reports on time, and in particular its report on the Translation Centre of the Bodies of the European Union, so that Parliament may have sufficient time to perform properly its own duties of budgetary and political control.

INFORMATION ON ADOPTION IN COMMITTEE ASKED FOR OPINION

Date adopted

22.1.2019

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

18

1

0

Members present for the final vote

Dominique Bilde, Andrea Bocskor, Silvia Costa, Mircea Diaconu, Damian Drăghici, Jill Evans, María Teresa Giménez Barbat, Petra Kammerevert, Krystyna Łybacka, Svetoslav Hristov Malinov, Luigi Morgano, Momchil Nekov, Michaela Šojdrová, Bogusław Sonik, Helga Trüpel, Julie Ward, Bogdan Andrzej Zdrojewski, Milan Zver

Substitutes present for the final vote

Liadh Ní Riada

FINAL VOTE BY ROLL CALL IN COMMITTEE ASKED FOR OPINION

18

+

ALDE

Mircea Diaconu, María Teresa Giménez Barbat

GUE/NGL

Liadh Ní Riada

PPE

Andrea Bocskor, Svetoslav Hristov Malinov, Michaela Šojdrová, Bogusław Sonik, Bogdan Andrzej Zdrojewski, Milan Zver

S&D

Silvia Costa, Damian Drăghici, Petra Kammerevert, Krystyna Łybacka, Luigi Morgano, Momchil Nekov, Julie Ward

VERTS/ALE

Jill Evans, Helga Trüpel

1

-

ENF

Dominique Bilde

0

0

 

 

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. 205.

(2)

OJ C 434, 30.11.2018, p. 205.

(3)

OJ L 298, 26.10.2012, p. 1.

(4)

OJ L 193, 30.7.2018, p. 1.

(5)

OJ L 314, 7.12.1994, p. 1.

(6)

OJ L 328, 7.12.2013, p. 42.

(7)

OJ C 434, 30.11.2018, p. 205.

(8)

OJ C 434, 30.11.2018, p. 205.

(9)

OJ L 298, 26.10.2012, p. 1.

(10)

OJ L 193, 30.7.2018, p. 1.

(11)

OJ L 314, 7.12.1994, p. 1.

(12)

OJ L 328, 7.12.2013, p. 42.

(13)

OJ C 415/01, 05.12.2017, p. 1

(14)

Regulation (EU) 2017/1001 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 14 June 2017 on the European Union trade mark (OJ L 154, 16.6.2017, p. 1)

(15)

Texts adopted, P8_TA-PROV(2019)0000.

Last updated: 12 March 2019Legal notice