Budget control MEPs to visit Hungary
A fact-finding mission of the Budgetary Control Committee will visit Hungary on September 18-20 to inspect the use of EU funds in the country.
Composed of nine EP members, members of the European Commission and the Court of Auditors, and led by the Committee Chair Ingeborg Gräßle (EPP, Germany), the mission will visit project sites and plans to meet representatives of the civil society, the Parliament, the State Audit Office and other stakeholders.
The Budgetary Control Committee, in charge of controlling the legality and efficiency of EU spending, undertakes visits to Member States as well as third countries to inspect the use of EU funds. All political groups approved the visit to Hungary in 2016 to follow up on an earlier mission to the country in 2011.
Responding to the criticism voiced by the government of Hungary prior to the visit, head of the delegation Ingeborg Gräßle says: “The main task of the Budgetary Control Committee is to look into how EU funds are spent. The mission to Hungary is part of the discharge procedure 2016 and constitutes a routine mission. We monitor control systems and visit project sites. We do not evaluate projects on the spot: the real work begins once we have had a look at the situation on the spot. I would like to reassure the Hungarian government once again that there is no political motivation behind the choice of the date of our mission, nor of the projects. The delegation will conduct its visit in a politically neutral way, as we always do. We will re-visit one project, the Budapest Metro line No. 4, and monitor the recovery procedure of the Commission”.
During the current legislative period, the Committee has visited Croatia, Germany, Greece, Italy, Poland and Jordan, the USA, Lebanon, Turkey and Ukraine. After each visit, a report is drafted and submitted to the European Commission, which manages the largest part of EU’s budget. Mission findings are also taken into account during the annual budgetary discharge procedure.