Which is better cohesion or rubric

Clerk: DI Markus Hopfner

Department: BMLFUW II 2
Coordination of rural. Development & Fisheries Fund

Tel.Nr .: 01 71 100 6780



according to § 6 EU-InfoG

on item 2 of the agenda of the EU Committee of the Federal Council on December 3, 2014



1.    Name of the document

NON 3172/14 European Court of Auditors / Agriculture and Cohesion: an overview of EU spending 2007-2013


2.    Content of the project

The document provides an overview of the EU expenditure under the multiannual financial framework 2007-2013 according to the principle of shared management (i.e. with national co-funding) in the fields of agriculture and cohesion were made.

The aim is to highlight the problems encountered in financial management and control and to summarize the audit results of the European Court of Auditors (ECA).

The two main headings of the multiannual financial framework are Heading 1b (Cohesion for growth and jobs) with 36% of the ceiling for commitments and 34% of the ceiling for payments, and Heading 2 (Conservation and management of natural resources (agriculture)) with 42% of the Commitment cap and 45% of the payment cap. These two headings together represent 78% of the amounts actually committed during the period and 79% of the payments made.


Error rates 2009-2013

According to the calculations of the ERH, the most likely error rate in 2007-2013 in both agriculture and cohesion consistently above the materiality threshold of 2%. During the period under review, the estimated most likely level of error in appropriations used was 3.7% for agriculture and 6.0% for cohesion.


The greatest risk relates to regulatory violations Public procurement. Errors mainly occur with the Extension or modification of existing orders for which a new tender must be carried out in accordance with EU public procurement rules.

At second is riskthat projects or expenses are funded in accordance with the regulations and / or national eligibility rules not eligible or that do not comply with some specific rules (such as EU state aid rules).

The main risks to the regularity of agricultural direct payments consist in that Area aid for ineligible areas, could be paid to ineligible beneficiaries or to more than one beneficiary for the same area, or that entitlements are incorrectly calculated or animal premiums are paid for animals that are not available. In addition, they are Failure to meet agri-environmental requirementsthat concern the use of agricultural production methods that are compatible with the protection of the environment, the landscape and natural resources, as well as non-compliance with specific requirements for investment projects are important factors that increase the risk.



The biggest challenge is taking action to address the administration of programs too simplify.Many errors are due to the Complexity of the overall architecture occurred for management and control. The Commission and Member States should therefore continue to look for ways to simplify matters.


3.    References to participation rights of the National Council and the Federal Council

Opportunity for the National Council and the Federal Council to comment in accordance with Art. 23g B-VG.


4.    Effects on the Republic of Austria including any need for domestic implementation

The document has no legislative effect.


5.    Position of the responsible federal minister including a brief explanation

As an introduction, it should be noted that the following statements refer exclusively to the parts of the present report of the European Court of Auditors that fall into the field of agriculture (heading 2).

The report is a good summary of the challenges that arose in the previous period in financial management and control of programs in the field of agriculture. The initiatives to reduce the error rates are welcomed by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management. Above all, it is a matter of making full use of the possibilities for simplification. The Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management took the conclusions of the report into account when drawing up the program for rural development 2014-2020. Error-prone measures have been deleted or made less complex.


6.    Information on proportionality and subsidiarity

It is appropriate for the ECA to do this at European level. The implementation of the recommendations is to be guaranteed on a subsidiary basis through the programs of the member states.



7.    Status of negotiations including schedule

Both the European Commission and the Member States have taken steps to implement the recommendations (see point 5). It is an ongoing process.