EU research joint undertakings: clean bill of health for all but one

Met dank overgenomen van Europese Rekenkamer i, gepubliceerd op maandag 12 november 2018.

The European Court of Auditors has signed off the 2017 accounts of all the EU i’s joint undertakings and issued clean opinions on the financial transactions for all except one. In the case of ECSEL dealing with electronic components and systems, the auditors found issues that - in some cases - prevented the effective functioning of internal control.

The auditors today published the annual reports on the EU’s eight joint undertakings in research, as well as a summary of the audit results. Joint undertakings are the EU’s public-private partnerships with industry, research groups and Member States. They employ some 700 staff and play an important role in carrying out specific aspects of EU research policy. The total 2017 budget of the joint undertakings amounted to €2.1 billion, or about 2% of the total EU budget. Their industry and research partners provide in-kind contributions by implementing their operational activities and cash contributions to their administrative and operational costs.

Joint undertakings are important vehicles for cutting-edge research and innovation in the EU, as they seek to help ensure the global competitiveness of the European industry,” said Ildiko Gall-Pelcz i, the Member of the European Court of Auditors responsible for the audit. “Our audit for 2017 confirmed the positive results reported in previous years. However, we highlight some matters requiring further attention and indicate areas for improvement related to budgetary and financial management, internal controls, leverage of industry and research partners’ contributions, as well as the European Commission’s evaluations”.