décembre 6, 2021

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Ireland has been a net contributor to the European Union for the past three years

Ireland has been a net contributor to the European Union over the past three years, with the country paying 360 million euros more into the EU budget in 2020 than it received, according to the latest report from European auditors.

The figures show that Ireland’s average net contribution for the period 2018-2020 was €377 million.

However, Ireland is expected to receive around 915 million euros in grants from the European Union’s Covid Recovery Fund until the end of next year, and the country has also received 2.47 billion euros in loans from the European Commission’s fund to protect against unemployment risks during the pandemic.

The European Court of Auditors (ECA), which published its public report on EU expenditures in 2020, said Ireland will receive about 1.165 billion euros in grants from the fund set up to support countries hardest hit by Brexit.

These receipts are separate from the EU budget expenditures and will not affect Ireland’s net contribution for 2020.

Overall, the annual auditors’ report showed that total EU expenditures in 2020 amounted to €173.3 billion, an increase of €14.2 billion compared to 2019, or about €385 per EU citizen.

Ireland contributed 2.615 billion euros to the EU budget and received 2.255 billion euros.

« This does not take into account the much broader range of benefits associated with our EU membership, » said Irish ECA member Tony Murphy.

« these [include] The single market, which addresses challenges such as migration, terrorism and climate change together, as well as in terms of better infrastructure and a coordinated EU response to issues such as the coronavirus pandemic.”

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As reported by RTÉ News in July, calculations for 2020 show that the UK’s Brexit financial settlement will amount to a net amount of €47.5 billion.

« This extraordinary event is reflected in the annual accounts of the European Union for the year 2020, » said a statement by the Economic Commission for Africa.

« The [European] The Commission estimated that at the balance sheet date, the UK owed the EU €49.6 billion while the EU owed the UK €2.1 billion. Therefore, at the balance sheet date, the EU accounts showed that the net receivables from the UK amounted to €47.5 billion.”

The Anti-Corruption Agency gave the annual accounts a clean bill of health, but says the overall error rate in spending EU money is 2.7%. The « threshold » error is 2%.

The error is when money is paid from the EU budget which should not be done, for example when it is not spent in accordance with relevant EU legislation or according to specific national rules.

Most mistakes happen in spending cohesion, the financing that is designed to allow poorer member states to catch up with richer ones.

The Anti-Corruption Act (ECA) defines coherence as a « high-risk » area of ​​spending because it is based on the reimbursement mechanism, and is backed by complex state aid and public procurement rules.

According to the report, the consolidation spending error rate was 3.5%.

The largest segment of EU spending comes under the heading of natural resources, including common agriculture and fisheries policies, as well as spending on climate change.

The report found that research spending is an area where there are significant errors (3.9%), often related to unqualified expenses such as exaggerated personnel costs.

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Irish Court of Auditors member Tony Murphy said universities receiving EU research funding may not prioritize administrative and financial data for research projects.

“They may not have very good systems for identifying and allocating personnel costs relevant to the specific project,” Mr. Murphy said.

“What we will probably see is that a lot of time is devoted to projects and then we can see that one person can be allocated too much, in other words, more than 100% of their time will be charged across two projects.”