Protection of financial interests

Fraud and illegal activities damaging the Union's policies have impact in the Union's budget. To ensure an effective protection of the financial interests of the Union, this proposal for a Directive brings forward convergent practices among all the EU member states. The overall objective of the proposal is to combat fraud and other fraud-related forms of illegal behaviour through which the EU budget is damaged.

This proposal presented by the Commission on 11 July 2012 was amended by the joint committee meeting CONT-LIBE on the 20 March 2014 with 44 votes in favour, 2 against and 5 abstentions.

MEP's agreed on an enlarged concept of public official, deleted the minimum sanctions and changed the legal basis from Article 325 TFEU to Article 83, 2 TFEU. Two compromise amendments were adopted on the definition of passive and active corruption and on the reporting and evaluation of the Directive's implementation by the Commission. The result of the vote in plenary, which took place on the 16 April, did not substantially change the text as adopted in committee.

The Rapporteurs started informal Trilogues with the Italian Presidency in beginning of October 2014, and will continue with the Latvian Presidency in order to reach an agreement in the first part of the year 2015. The most technical elements of the legislators' texts are being worked on with the Commission's technical support to reach an acceptable formulation for both institutions. The discussion on the recitals will take place at the end, after a compromise is attained on the body of the text. The inclusions of VAT in the text together with the serious crimes definition remain the most problematic elements of the legislators' position.