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Procedura : 2022/2088(DEC)
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Testi presentati :

A9-0067/2023

Discussioni :

PV 09/05/2023 - 12
PV 09/05/2023 - 14
CRE 09/05/2023 - 12
CRE 09/05/2023 - 14

Votazioni :

PV 10/05/2023 - 9.8

Testi approvati :

P9_TA(2023)0144

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Martedì 9 maggio 2023 - Strasburgo Edizione rivista

12. Discarico 2021 (discussione)
Video degli interventi
Processo verbale
MPphoto
 

  President. – The next item on the agenda is the joint debate on the following reports:

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the general budget of the European Union for the financial year 2021, Section III – Commission and executive agencies [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0227/2022- 2022/2081(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteurs: Jeroen Lenaers and Monika Hohlmeier (A9-0101/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the general budget of the European Union for the financial year 2021, Section I – European Parliament [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0228/2022- 2022/2082(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Isabel García Muñoz (A9-0086/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the general budget of the European Union for the financial year 2021, Section II – European Council and Council [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0229/2022- 2022/2083(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Mikuláš Peksa (A9-0085/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the general budget of the European Union for the financial year 2021, Section IV – Court of Justice of the European Union [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0230/2022- 2022/2084(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Mikuláš Peksa (A9-0073/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the general budget of the European Union for the financial year 2021, Section V – Court of Auditors [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0231/2022- 2022/2085(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Mikuláš Peksa (A9-0081/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the general budget of the European Union for the financial year 2021, Section VI – European Economic and Social Committee [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0232/2022- 2022/2086(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Mikuláš Peksa (A9-0074/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the general budget of the European Union for the financial year 2021, Section VII – Committee of the Regions [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0233/2022- 2022/2087(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Mikuláš Peksa (A9-0080/2023)

- Discharge 2021: EU general budget - European Ombudsman discharge in respect of the implementation of the general budget of the European Union for the financial year 2021, Section VIII – European Ombudsman [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0234/2022- 2022/2088(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Mikuláš Peksa (A9-0067/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the general budget of the European Union for the financial year 2021, Section IX – European Data Protection Supervisor [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0235/2022- 2022/2089(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Mikuláš Peksa (A9-0070/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the general budget of the European Union for the financial year 2021, Section X – European External Action Service [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0236/2022- 2022/2090(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Mikuláš Peksa (A9-0088/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0237/2022 - 2022/2091(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Mikuláš Peksa (A9-0079/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (Cedefop) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0241/2022- 2022/2095(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Olivier Chastel (A9-0125/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions (Eurofound) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0265/2022- 2022/2119(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Olivier Chastel (A9-0109/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0269/2022- 2022/2123(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ramona Strugariu (A9-0141/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0256/2022- 2022/2110(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ramona Strugariu (A9-0107/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Environment Agency for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0248/2022- 2022/2102(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Katalin Cseh (A9-0143/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0264/2022- 2022/2118(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Alin Mituța (A9-0132/2023)

- Report 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 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0240/2022- 2022/2094(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Olivier Chastel (A9-0104/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Medicines Agency for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0255/2022- 2022/2109(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Katalin Cseh (A9-0106/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Union Agency for Criminal Justice Cooperation (Eurojust) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0266/2022- 2022/2120(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ramona Strugariu (A9-0122/2023)

-Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Training Foundation for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0262/2022- 2022/2116(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Alin Mituța (A9-0135/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Maritime Safety Agency for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0257/2022- 2022/2111(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ilana Cicurel (A9-0113/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Union Aviation Safety Agency for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0243/2022- 2022/2097(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Olivier Chastel (A9-0098/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Food Safety Authority for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0250/2022- 2022/2104(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Katalin Cseh (A9-0131/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0246/2022- 2022/2100(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Katalin Cseh (A9-0146/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of ENISA (European Union Agency for Cybersecurity) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0258/2022- 2022/2112(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Katalin Cseh (A9-0115/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Union Agency for Railways for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0259/2022- 2022/2113(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Olivier Chastel (A9-0100/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Training (CEPOL) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0242/2022- 2022/2096(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ramona Strugariu (A9-0102/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Border and Coast Guard Agency for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0270/2022- 2022/2124(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ramona Strugariu (A9-0142/2023)

- Report ondischarge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Union Agency for the Space Programme (before 12.5.2021 the European GNSS Agency) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0268/2022- 2022/2122(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Katalin Cseh (A9-0116/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Fisheries Control Agency for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0249/2022- 2022/2103(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ilana Cicurel (A9-0112/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Chemicals Agency for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0247/2022- 2022/2101(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Katalin Cseh (A9-0133/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the Euratom Supply Agency for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0260/2022- 2022/2114(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Katalin Cseh (A9-0126/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation (Europol) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0267/2022- 2022/2121(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ramona Strugariu (A9-0138/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Institute for Gender Equality for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0251/2022- 2022/2105(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Olivier Chastel (A9-0121/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Banking Authority for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0245/2022- 2022/2099(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Alin Mituța (A9-0110/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0252/2022- 2022/2106(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Gilles Boyer (A9-0103/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Securities and Markets Authority for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0261/2022- 2022/2115(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Gilles Boyer (A9-0137/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Union Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0238/2022- 2022/2092(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Katalin Cseh (A9-0111/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the Agency for Support for BEREC (BEREC Office) for the financial year [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0239/2022- 2022/2093(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Katalin Cseh (A9-0129/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0253/2022- 2022/2107(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Katalin Cseh (A9-0130/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Asylum Support Office (now the European Union Agency for Asylum) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0244/2022- 2022/2098(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ramona Strugariu (A9-0123/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Union Agency for the Operational Management of Large-Scale IT Systems in the Area of Freedom, Security and Justice (eu-LISA) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0263/2022- 2022/2117(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ramona Strugariu (A9-0105/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Joint Undertaking for ITER and the Development of Fusion Energy for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0275/2022- 2022/2129(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ryszard Czarnecki (A9-0092/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the Single European Sky ATM Research 3 Joint Undertaking (before 30.11.2021 the SESAR Joint Undertaking) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0278/2022- 2022/2132(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ryszard Czarnecki (A9-0118/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the Clean Aviation Joint Undertaking (before 30.11.2021 the Clean Sky 2 Joint Undertaking) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0272/2022- 2022/2126(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Joachim Stanisław Brudziński (A9-0078/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the Circular Bio-based Europe Joint Undertaking (before 30.11.2021 the Bio-based Industries Joint Undertaking) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0271/2022- 2022/2125(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Joachim Stanisław Brudziński (A9-0093/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the Innovative Health Initiative Joint Undertaking (before 30.11.2021 the Innovative Medicines Initiative 2 Joint Undertaking) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0277/2022- 2022/2131(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ryszard Czarnecki (A9-0069/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the Clean Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (before 30.11.2021 the Fuel Cells and Hydrogen 2 Joint Undertaking) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0276/2022- 2022/2130(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ryszard Czarnecki (A9-0083/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the Europe’s Rail Joint Undertaking (before 30.11.2021 the Shift2Rail Joint Undertaking) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0279/2022- 2022/2133(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ryszard Czarnecki (A9-0090/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the Key Digital Technologies Joint Undertaking (before 30.11.2021 the ECSEL Joint Undertaking) for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0273/2022- 2022/2127(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ryszard Czarnecki (A9-0082/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European High Performance Computing Joint Undertaking for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0274/2022- 2022/2128(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Ryszard Czarnecki (A9-0089/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the eighth, ninth, tenth and eleventh European Development Funds for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0321 - C9-0281/2022- 2022/2135(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: José Manuel Fernandes (A9-0114/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Union agencies for the financial year 2021: performance, financial management and control [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0280/2022- 2022/2134(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Olivier Chastel (A9-0144/2023)

- Report on discharge in respect of the implementation of the budget of the European Labour Authority for the financial year 2021 [COM(2022)0323 - C9-0254/2022- 2022/2108(DEC)] - Committee on Budgetary Control. Rapporteur: Alin Mituța (A9-0117/2023)

 
  
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  Monika Hohlmeier, Berichterstatterin. – Frau Präsidentin, Herr Kommissar, liebe Kolleginnen und Kollegen! Zunächst einmal darf ich einen Dank an den Kollegen Jeroen Lenaers aussprechen, der nach mir sprechen wird, aber, Frau Präsidentin, nachdem Sie es gerade vorhin erst bei der Abstimmung angekündigt haben, nicht wissen kann, dass wir vorher beginnen. Ich bedanke mich auch ganz herzlich bei meinen Schattenberichterstatterinnen und —berichterstattern, die wir eine sehr gute Zusammenarbeit hatten. Herzlichen Dank an den Europäischen Rechnungshof und seine Mitglieder, lieber Tony Murphy und Jan Gregor, es sind ja beide hier mit anwesend. Ein herzliches Dankeschön für den Jahresbericht und den Sonderbericht und die hervorragende Zusammenarbeit.

Lieber Herr Kommissar, auch an Sie ein herzliches Dankeschön an die Kommission. Am Anfang war es bei ein paar Generaldirektionen in der Zusammenarbeit ein bisschen holprig, aber ich danke GD BUDG für die Unterstützung bei der Beförderung der Kooperation. Die größten Erfolge bei der Entlastung, die wir haben erzielen können, liegen, glaube ich, in vier Bereichen.

Als erstes: Wir wollen eine Digitalisierungsoffensive, und die Kommission hat hier ihre Unterstützung zugesagt. Wir brauchen dringend eine Verbesserung der Interoperabilität, nicht nur wegen der Transparenz und Rückverfolgung, sondern auch, um Bürokratieabbau voranzutreiben, Prozesse zu beschleunigen und Informationen schneller zu bekommen, als dies bisher der Fall ist. Deshalb brauchen wir nicht nur Arachne, weil das bisher ein riesiges Instrument, aber mit nicht allzu viel Mehrwert ist; wir brauchen echte interoperable Systeme.

Zweitens dann: Die Methodologie zu Teilzahlungen war eine der Kernforderungen im Bereich des ARF. Zunächst gab es noch keine, dann gab es eine, und anschließend gibt es jetzt auch noch eine Quantifizierung. Ich bedanke mich für die Schnelligkeit der Arbeit. Ich bedanke mich auch dafür, dass es mittlerweile eine interaktive Plattform gibt mit Informationen zu Projekten, die bereits realisiert werden oder feststehen und in der Realisierung sind, und auch Auskünfte zu den Endempfängern, die hier auch offensichtlich für jeden zur Verfügung stehen werden. Wir bekommen Informationen mittlerweile zu den 100 größten Empfängern nicht nur in einem Teilbereich, sondern für den gesamten ARF pro Mitgliedstaat und die werden wir auch entsprechend veröffentlicht erhalten. Dies waren tatsächlich für uns wunderbare Erfolge. Es bleiben aber noch einige Probleme übrig.

Erstens: Wir haben immer noch keine Information, wie viel Geld eigentlich wirklich die Realwirtschaft erreicht hat. Ich habe jetzt noch nochmal auch in Spanien nachgefragt. Mir wurde zugesagt, dass wir die Daten bekommen; ich habe bis heute immer noch keine bekommen. Das heißt, wir haben nach wie vor keine Information darüber: Wie viel Geld haben die Projektentwickler oder diejenigen, die Projekte machen, tatsächlich erhalten, und wie viel Geld ist eigentlich wirklich bei den Menschen angekommen?

Zweitens: Wir müssen feststellen, dass der ARF ziemlich langsam startet. Ursprünglich war er als ein schnelles Notinstrument gedacht, in Wirklichkeit verzögert sich die Implementierung. Bis zum heutigen Tage sind nur wenig Summen tatsächlich in der Realwirtschaft angekommen, und das ist einer der Punkte, die, glaube ich, am meisten vorangetrieben werden müssen. Wenn wir tatsächlich die Wirtschaft vorantreiben wollen, Arbeitsplätze vorantreiben wollen, Erholung vorantreiben wollen, dann bedeutet es in der Konsequenz: Die Projekte müssen realisiert werden, und sie müssen auch einen tatsächlichen Mehrwert haben und funktionieren.

Drittens: Wir erleben derzeit, dass ursprünglich von der Kohäsion Projekte in den ARF geschoben wurden, sprich in den Corona-Aufbaufonds. Jetzt werden vom Corona-Aufbaufonds wieder Projekte in die Kohäsion zurückgeschoben. Das heißt, wir haben einen munteren Verschiebebahnhof von unterschiedlichen Projekten. Das bedeutet, der ARF ist in der Schnelligkeit der Implementierung auch abhängig davon, ob die Mitgliedstaaten erstens adäquate Strukturen zum Umsetzen haben, zweitens davon, ob es, wie wir es in Spanien erlebt haben, eine ernsthafte Zusammenarbeit mit den Regionen gibt, sodass diese wirklich schnell davon profitieren können, was derzeit noch nicht so klappt, sondern nur langsam Schritt für Schritt klappt.

Ich habe den Eindruck, dass insgesamt bei der Umsetzung vielleicht der Ehrgeiz und die Aussagen nach außen bei manchen größer waren, als die tatsächliche Realität es wiedergibt. Also es gibt eine Menge zu tun. Trotzdem ein Dankeschön an alle Beteiligten für die gute Zusammenarbeit.

 
  
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   Jeroen Lenaers, rapporteur. – Madam President, I always believe in ladies first, so I gave Monika the opportunity to speak before me. Now, thank you very much, and I think, really, this discharge procedure is one of the most important procedures we do in the House because in order to maintain citizens trust in the work we do, we need to make sure that the budget is spent correctly.

This House has a great responsibility to scrutinise that spending. I would really like to thank the co-rapporteur, the shadow rapporteurs, the Secretariat and all colleagues who took part in this work; we had an excellent cooperation. I would also like to express my gratitude to the work of the European Court of Auditors, which is an indispensable partner in the work that we do.

This discharge focuses on the year 2021, and we have observed a concerning increase in the error rate for expenditure, which now stands at 3 %, as reported by the Court of Auditors. This is well above the acceptable limit of 2 %. In fact, for the majority of reimbursement-based expenditures, the error rate reaches an alarming 4.7 % and we must take immediate action to prevent this rate from growing even further in the upcoming years. And we are urging the Commission to launch additional initiatives to address this.

The different methodologies used by the Commission and the Court of Auditors when calculating the risk at payment or the error rate also complicates the comparability, it makes it difficult to compare the two numbers. This further adds confusion because the Commission, whenever the Court of Auditors presents an error rate which is positive, we use this in our communications, we accept it, whenever there is an error rate presented which is unfavourable to the Commission, the methodology is disputed. This is an approach which is not fair and we should also change that in order to make it all a bit more logical.

Even more alarming in that sense is the lack of responsibility and the failure to fully recognise shortcomings in the methodology with regards to climate spending. The Court calculated that spending on climate action has been overstated by EUR 72 billion for the 2014–2020 period, and the Commission refuses to fully acknowledge it – Commissioner Timmermans came to a CONT meeting and concluded by saying that we should agree to disagree on this. Sorry, but no, we cannot agree to disagree on overstating EUR 72 billion of climate spending. We need to accept the conclusions of the Court on this and work to address this issue.

Another concern that we are addressing involves the slow absorption of funds and the rate of commitment to implementation, which could lead to increased risk towards the end of the budgetary period and to resolve these issues, we need to continue to bolster the administrative capacity of the Member States and the European Commission.

Now, we have in this discharge, really emphasised the significance of the Union budget’s performance, which includes utilising appropriate indicators, simplifying rules and procedures and implementing better-targeted controls. Transparency is a key element of a resolution and we emphasise the importance of transparent operations across the board, including for NGO and intermediaries in terms of their funding and ownership. And we also request that the Commission establish an effective mechanism to ensure that NGO activities align with EU values.

We have also underscored the importance of incorporating new technologies like EDES and Arachne and developing a unified information and monitoring system provided by the Commission to allow for the electronic recording and storage of data of Union funding recipients, including their beneficial ownerships, in order to help us prevent any misuse of the budget.

We also recognise the benefits and lessons learned through the use of new technologies, such as satellite controls and agricultural spending, for instance. We are convinced that these advancements will play a crucial role in better safeguarding our budget.

Now, to wrap up on a very serious note, we remain deeply concerned – and this is also reflected in the resolution – about the rule of law situation in several Member States, which not only undermines democracy but also results in substantial risks for the Union budget. We expect all Member States to adhere to democracy and the rule of law in order to receive European funds. And we particularly highlight the concerning situation in Hungary, where corruption and an opaque public procurement system must be addressed through reforms within the context of the conditionality mechanism.

I am grateful for the level of unity we achieved during our work in the committee, and I look forward to listening to all the contributions of our colleagues.

 
  
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  Isabel García Muñoz, ponente. – Señora presidenta, señor Hahn, señor Murphy, como ponente para la aprobación de las cuentas de 2021 del Parlamento Europeo, tengo que reconocer que examinar cómo hemos usado nuestro presupuesto y qué debemos hacer para mejorarlo no es tarea fácil. Hablamos de 2 000 millones de euros, de unos 9 000 empleados, de 705 diputados y de un amplio parque inmobiliario. Importantes recursos públicos destinados a que los diputados podamos llevar a cabo nuestro mandato y que deben ser gestionados de la forma más eficiente, ética y transparente posible.

El Parlamento es la única institución europea elegida por sufragio directo y representa la voz de la ciudadanía de toda la Unión. Por eso son fundamentales la rendición de cuentas, la transparencia y la integridad en todas las instituciones de la Unión, pero en particular en la casa de la democracia europea.

Quiero agradecer el trabajo y el apoyo del resto de ponentes para que el informe que aprobamos en la Comisión de Control Presupuestario recogiera la necesidad de ahondar en todos estos aspectos y espero que tras la votación de mañana se sigan manteniendo en el texto final.

El año 2021 continuó marcado por la pandemia de COVID-19. Durante gran parte del año el Parlamento tuvo que seguir aplicando muchas de las medidas extraordinarias que habían sido aprobadas el año anterior para continuar con la actividad de la institución: el teletrabajo, la votación a distancia, las reuniones híbridas. Y, por tanto, el presupuesto también se adoptó con ahorros en algunas partidas presupuestarias que fueron transferidos a otras, como la reducción de la deuda por la expansiva política de edificios.

Podemos felicitarnos de que el Parlamento haya sido resiliente frente a una situación impredecible de enorme magnitud y haya sabido dar una respuesta rápida y flexible, basada en gran parte en el esfuerzo humano y también en la digitalización de la administración, en la que, sin duda alguna, hay que seguir invirtiendo, al igual que en ciberseguridad, para luchar contra la injerencia extranjera cada vez más presente y peligrosa en las instituciones europeas.

Una vez más he querido ser objetiva en mi informe, teniendo en cuenta el difícil contexto de urgencia, pero también la responsabilidad de la administración a la hora de administrar el presupuesto y los recursos humanos. Por eso, dentro de la gestión de la pandemia destaco aspectos muy positivos como la exitosa campaña de vacunación que permitió proteger la salud de todos. Pero también menciono decisiones que no justifican determinados gastos, como la renovación de un jardín adyacente al Parlamento en Bruselas, o decisiones que no han ayudado a mantener unas buenas condiciones de trabajo del personal de la institución.

Pongo en valor también las medidas de ahorro energético y de reducción de la huella ambiental de la institución y también la intensa y diversa actividad de comunicación que realiza el Parlamento para informar a los ciudadanos. Pero continuamos reivindicando cambios necesarios en las condiciones laborales de nuestros asistentes. Todo esto y muchos otros aspectos están recogidos en el informe.

Pero, además de la pandemia, un segundo factor ha tenido un impacto en la aprobación de la gestión de 2021: el escándalo del Qatargate, que, aunque no sucedió en el año 2021, no podíamos dejar de abordar en este informe. Este escándalo ha servido de revulsivo para que el Parlamento revise sus normas sobre ética y transparencia, pero hay que recordar que algunas de ellas ya se venían reivindicando en nuestra comisión. Incluso habían sido aprobadas en el Pleno años atrás, aunque sin éxito en su puesta en marcha.

Como ponente he intentado consensuar con el resto de grupos una serie de medidas que el Parlamento debería implementar para evitar cualquier situación parecida en el futuro y, sobre todo, para reparar el daño causado a su credibilidad, a la confianza que los ciudadanos deben depositar en esta institución.

Las propuestas incluyen reforzar la transparencia alrededor de la actividad de lobbying, mejorar controles para evitar conflictos de intereses, como en la contratación pública también, y revisar el código de conducta para evitar y sancionar comportamientos individuales poco éticos. No hay que olvidar que son comportamientos individuales, pero que dañan a todos en su conjunto, y es justo reconocer la capacidad de reacción del Parlamento, que en pocos meses ha dado importantes pasos por la transparencia y la rendición de cuentas. Y doy, por supuesto, la bienvenida a todas esas mejoras. Pero no debemos olvidar que las normas sirven de poco si no hay un sistema de implementación, de control y de sanción adecuado.

Gracias a la aprobación de la gestión, este Parlamento mira con lupa lo que hace la Comisión, lo que hacen otras instituciones y hasta los Estados miembros. Pero lo que pedimos a los demás no siempre lo exigimos para nosotros mismos. Nos jugamos la confianza de la ciudadanía y, por tanto, el futuro de la Unión. No perdamos esta oportunidad.

 
  
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  Mikuláš Peksa, rapporteur. – Madam President, dear colleagues, I would like to start by thanking all the institutions who participated in the exercise for their cooperation and the information they provided. I would also like to thank the shadow rapporteurs for their valuable cooperation in the discharge reports.

The year 2021 remained a challenging one, with the pandemic still requiring crisis response and adoption of working conditions. I am glad that all the other institutions, as they are called, managed to achieve high budget implementation, maintain and ensure full business continuity, switch to digital solutions, secure their network, improve remote working conditions and carry on recruitments.

I also recognise the challenges those institutions were facing, mostly when it comes to lack of sufficient resources to deliver fully on their respective missions. For the Luxembourg-based institutions, the additional challenge remains the correlation coefficient, which hampers their attractiveness in comparison to the private sector.

As this year’s rapporteur, I highlighted a number of recommendations for the future, especially concerning: performance under the modified working regime; sustainability and environmental impact of the institutions and long-term ecological strategies; digitalisation and cybersecurity, particularly given the high increase in use of IT tools and remote working conditions; ethical framework and transparency, particularly with regard to prevention of harassment and conflict of interests; and gender and geographical balance.

This year was the first discharge of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office. Although the EPPO has become fully operational only in the middle of 2021, they have already demonstrated a successful track record of effectiveness. The EPPO’s mission is crucial to protect the EU’s budget and recover defrauded funds. What negatively affects its operation is the fact that five Member States still refuse to participate in its activities, namely Hungary, Poland, Sweden, Denmark and Ireland.

I note with satisfaction the improved cooperation with the European Court of Auditors and welcome the efforts of the new management aimed at improving the internal processes, strengthening the code of conduct and improving stakeholder relations. ECA is a key partner for the European Parliament.

I welcome the efforts by the Committee of the Regions in strengthening their code of conduct, promoting their work and achievement in the field of sustainability and green agenda. The Committee of the Regions achieved the best results in terms of sustainability and switching to environmentally friendly infrastructure.

I also want to highlight the important role of the Ombudsman, Court of Justice and Data Protection Supervisor that they play in ensuring transparency and accountability, even more during the digital transition. In particular, I welcome their increased attention to the field of cybersecurity and their efforts to use and promote decentralised, free and open-source social network alternatives to the very large online platforms for communicating their activities.

I note the internal reforms adopted by the European Economic and Social Committee, and I am satisfied with the improved communication and cooperation with the European Parliament. However, my report stresses the need for culture reforms in the institution and more timely reactions to staff compliance and well-being. It is not acceptable that requests for assistance by staff members take more than three-and-a-half years to be handled.

As we have been currently living in the new reality of war taking place at our borders and diplomatic efforts play a crucial role, it is important to recognise the work done by the European External Action Service. We need to evaluate the situation of the many delegations, with particular emphasis on the budget effectiveness regarding security and communication.

Finally, I deeply regret that yet again, the Council and the European Council refused to participate in the discharge procedure. I also tabled a new amendment highlighting the recent scandal of extensive use of private jets, even for short travels, and all the negative implications this phenomenon presents.

I hope all the political groups will be able to support my recommendations for the sound management of the so-called other institutions.

 
  
  

PRESIDENZA DELL'ON. PINA PICIERNO
Vicepresidente

 
  
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  Presidente. – Purtroppo devo annunciare una veloce sospensione nell'Aula perché c'è un problema tecnico legato a una difficoltà nella traduzione di alcune lingue, quindi vi chiedo la pazienza di temporeggiare per qualche minuto solo per risolvere questo problema tecnico.

(La seduta è sospesa alle 13.18 per motivi tecnici)

 
Ultimo aggiornamento: 20 settembre 2023Note legali - Informativa sulla privacy