Procedure : 2013/2241(DEC)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : A7-0206/2014

Texts tabled :

A7-0206/2014

Debates :

PV 02/04/2014 - 24
CRE 02/04/2014 - 24

Votes :

PV 03/04/2014 - 7.25

Texts adopted :


REPORT     
PDF 170kWORD 80k
20 March 2014
PE 521.644v02-00 A7-0206/2014

on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications for the financial year 2012

(C7-0329/2013 – 2013/2241(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 Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications for the financial year 2012

(C7-0329/2013 – 2013/2241(DEC))

The European Parliament,

–   having regard to the final annual accounts of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications for the financial year 2012,

–   having regard to the Court of Auditors' report on the annual accounts of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications for the financial year 2012, together with the Body’s replies(1),

–   having regard to the Council's recommendation of 18 February 2014 (05849/2014 – C7-0054/2014),

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

–   having regard to the Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 of 25 June 2002 on the Financial Regulation applicable to the general budget of the European Communities(2), and in particular Article 185 thereof,

–   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 (EC) No 1211/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 November 2009 establishing the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC) and the Office(4), and in particular Article 13 thereof,

–   having regard to Commission Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 2343/2002 of 19 November 2002 on the framework Financial Regulation for the bodies referred to in Article 185 of Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 on the Financial Regulation applicable to the general budget of the European Communities(5),

–   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 77 of, and Annex VI to, its Rules of Procedure,

–   having regard to the report of the Committee on Budgetary Control (A7-0206/2014),

1.  Postpones its decision on granting the Administrative Manager of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications discharge in respect of the implementation of the Body’s budget for the financial year 2012;

2.  Sets out its observations in the resolution below;

3.  Instructs its President to forward this Decision and the resolution that forms an integral part of it to the Administrative Manager of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications, 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 Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications for the financial year 2012

(C7-0329/2013 – 2013/2241(DEC))

The European Parliament,

–   having regard to the final annual accounts of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications for the financial year 2012,

–   having regard to the Court of Auditors' report on the annual accounts of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications for the financial year 2012, together with the Body’s replies(7),

–   having regard to the Council's recommendation of 18 February 2014 (05849/2014 – C7-0054/2014),

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

–   having regard to the Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 of 25 June 2002 on the Financial Regulation applicable to the general budget of the European Communities(8), and in particular Article 185 thereof,

–   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 (EC) No 1211/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 November 2009 establishing the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC) and the Office(10), and in particular Article 13 thereof,

–   having regard to Commission Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 2343/2002 of 19 November 2002 on the framework Financial Regulation for the bodies referred to in Article 185 of Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 on the Financial Regulation applicable to the general budget of the European Communities(11),

–   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 77 of, and Annex VI to, its Rules of Procedure,

–   having regard to the report of the Committee on Budgetary Control (A7-0206/2014),

1.  Postpones its decision on the closure of the accounts of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications for the financial year 2012;

2.  Instructs its President to forward this Decision to the Administrative Manager of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications, 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 its Decision on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications for the financial year 2012

(C7-0329/2013 – 2013/2241(DEC))

The European Parliament,

–   having regard to the final annual accounts of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications for the financial year 2012,

–   having regard to the Court of Auditors' report on the annual accounts of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications for the financial year 2012, together with the Body’s replies(13),

–   having regard to the Council's recommendation of 18 February 2014 (05849/2014 – C7-0054/2014),

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

–   having regard to the Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 of 25 June 2002 on the Financial Regulation applicable to the general budget of the European Communities(14), and in particular Article 185 thereof,

–   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(15) , and in particular Article 208 thereof,

–   having regard to Regulation (EC) No 1211/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 November 2009 establishing the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC) and the Office(16), and in particular Article 13 thereof,

–   having regard to Commission Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 2343/2002 of 19 November 2002 on the framework Financial Regulation for the bodies referred to in Article 185 of Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 on the Financial Regulation applicable to the general budget of the European Communities(17),

–   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(18), and in particular Article 108 thereof,

-    having regard to its previous discharge decisions and resolutions,

–   having regard to Rule 77 of, and Annex VI to, its Rules of Procedure,

–   having regard to the report of the Committee on Budgetary Control (A7-0206/2014),

A. whereas, according to its financial statements, the final budget of the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (“the Body”) for the financial year 2012 was EUR 3 190 000, representing an increase of 170,60 % compared to 2011; whereas this increase is due to the Body’s recently established nature; whereas the Body's entire budget derives from the Union budget,

B.  whereas the Court of Auditors has stated that it has obtained reasonable assurances that the Body's annual accounts for the financial year 2012 are reliable and that the underlying transactions are legal and regular,

Comments on the reliability of accounts

1.   Notes that the Body’s accounting system has been validated in 2013;

Comments on the legality and regularity of transactions

2.   Regrets that the committed appropriations carried over, amounting to EUR 61 500 (10 % of the total committed appropriations carried over), did not correspond to legal commitments and were thus irregular; calls on the Body to take steps in order to avoid such situations in the future and to report on the steps taken by 1 September 2014;

3. Notes that the experiences learned in both 2011 and 2012 were addressed in 2013 by specifying the financial procedures and by providing additional refresher training courses to all financial actors; notes that additional attention was paid throughout 2013 to the correct opening of financial and legal commitments;

Budget and financial management

4.   Notes with concern that budget monitoring efforts during the financial year 2012 resulted in a budget implementation rate of 63,4 % and that the payment appropriations execution rate was 66,16 %; calls on the Body to substantially improve budget monitoring efforts and the aforementioned rates of budget implementation and execution; expects the Body to report on the steps taken to remedy the situation by 1 September 2014;

Commitments and carryovers

5.  Regrets that some EUR 101 000 (45 % of the committed appropriations carried over from 2011) were cancelled; expresses concern that appropriations of EUR 545 000 (17 % of the total 2012 appropriations) were not used and had to be cancelled; regrets that the level of carry-overs of committed appropriations to 2013 was high at EUR 611 000 (19% of the total); believes that this indicates difficulties in the planning and/or implementation of the Body’s activities, as the carry-overs for 2012 were mostly related to delayed recruitments and the absence of an effective policy to ensure the timely presentation and reimbursement of mission costs claimed by experts; calls on the Body to address the situation and to report to the discharge authority on the steps taken by 1 September 2014;

Transfers

6.  Notes that according to the annual activity report as well as the Court of Auditor's audit findings, the level and nature of transfers in 2012 have remained within the limits of the financial rules;

Procurement and recruitment procedures

7.  Notes with concern that there is considerable room for improvement regarding the preparation, execution and documentation of procurement procedures; notes in particular that award procedures did not give sufficient attention to the price-quality ratio and that general award criteria had not been broken down further into sub criteria to allow a clear and comparable evaluation of the offers;

8.  Regrets that the recruitment procedures examined showed significant shortcomings affecting transparency, namely that questions for written tests and interviews were set after the applications had been examined by the selection board, no threshold scores were set for admission to written tests and interviews and for inclusion in the list of suitable candidates, and nominations and changes in the composition of the selection board were not approved by the appointing authority;

9.  Notes with concern that while most of the Body’s staff have an administrative or support function and do not travel, they have all been provided with a mobile phone with a monthly limit up to EUR 50; expresses concern that there are no controls to monitor private use;

10. Regrets that the Body does not have a treasury policy; notes that as a result, at the end of 2012, all cash held by the Body (EUR 1 600 000) was held in one bank, which has a BBB credit rating;

11. Calls on the Body to report on the actions taken to remedy the aforementioned outstanding issues concerning procurement and recruitment procedures by 1 September 2014;

Prevention and management of conflicts of interests and transparency

12. Regrets that the Body has provided limited information regarding conflicts of interests policy, referring only to conflicts of interests declarations being requested and making no mention of any code of conduct or policy in place; notes that there is nothing on the publication of the declarations, on awareness training in place or on bringing the Body into line with the Commission's Guidelines on the Prevention and Management of Conflict of Interests in EU Decentralised Agencies; calls on the Body to remedy this situation before 1 September 2014; calls on the Body to provide the discharge authority with details of the measures being taken in this domain, particularly because it is composed by representatives of the electronic communication regulators of the Member States and it has to advise those regulators, as well as the Union institutions, and this situation requires a strong and transparent conflict of interests policy in place;

13. Notes that personal conflicts of interests declarations are requested from the members of the Body's Management Committee and the Board of Regulators, as well as from their staff members; notes that declarations of conflicts of interests of the members of the recruitment selection committees have been updated on the basis of recommendations from the Court of Auditors; calls on the Body to inform the discharge authority of whether it plans to review its conflict of interests arrangements on the basis of the above mentioned Commission's Guidelines;

14. Observes that the CVs and declarations of interests of the members of the Management Committee, the Administrative Manager and senior management are not publicly available; calls on the Body to remedy the situation as a matter of urgency;

Internal audit

15. Deplores the fact that there are a number of outstanding issues as regards the internal controls, namely that:

-    the Body has not yet implemented the Internal Control Standards (ICS) on Objectives and performance indicators (ICS 5), Process and procedures (ICS 8), Document management (ICS 11) and Information and Communication (ICS 12),

-    there is no procedure regarding the registration and disposal of fixed assets, and no physical inventory has been performed,

-    procedures concerning the establishment, approval and recording of exceptions and deviations from policies and procedures have not been implemented;

16. Calls on the Body to remedy that situation and to report on its progress by 1 September 2014;

Performance

17. Requests that the Body communicate the results and impact its work has on European citizens in an accessible way, mainly through its website;

o

o         o

18. Refers, in respect of the other observations accompanying its Decision on discharge, which are of a horizontal nature, to its resolution of … 2014(19) on the performance, financial management and control of the agencies.

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

17.3.2014

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

18

1

0

Members present for the final vote

Marta Andreasen, Jean-Pierre Audy, Zuzana Brzobohatá, Martin Ehrenhauser, Jens Geier, Gerben-Jan Gerbrandy, Ingeborg Gräßle, Rina Ronja Kari, Monica Luisa Macovei, Jan Mulder, Eva Ortiz Vilella, Paul Rübig, Petri Sarvamaa, Bart Staes, Georgios Stavrakakis, Derek Vaughan

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Amelia Andersdotter, Markus Pieper

Substitute(s) under Rule 187(2) present for the final vote

Thomas Ulmer

(1)

     OJ C 365, 13.12.2013, p. 9.

(2)

     OJ L 248, 16.9.2002, p. 1.

(3)

     OJ L 298, 26.10.2012, p. 1.

(4)

     OJ L 337, 18.12.2009, p. 1.

(5)

     OJ L 357, 31.12.2002, p. 72.

(6)

     OJ L 328, 7.12.2013, p. 42.

(7)

     OJ C 365, 13.12.2013, p. 9.

(8)

     OJ L 248, 16.9.2002, p. 1.

(9)

     OJ L 298, 26.10.2012, p. 1.

(10)

   OJ L 337, 18.12.2009, p. 1.

(11)

   OJ L 357, 31.12.2002, p. 72.

(12)

   OJ L 328, 7.12.2013, p. 42.

(13)

   OJ C 365, 13.12.2013, p. 9.

(14)

   OJ L 248, 16.9.2002, p. 1.

(15)

   OJ L 298, 26.10.2012, p. 1.

(16)

   OJ L 337, 18.12.2009, p. 1.

(17)

   OJ L 357, 31.12.2002, p. 72.

(18)

   OJ L 328, 7.12.2013, p. 42.

(19)

Texts adopted, P7_TA-PROV(2014).

Last updated: 21 March 2014Legal notice