Банкеръ Weekly

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THE AUDIT OFFICE INSPECTS EUROPEAN FUNDS USE BY THE FINANCIAL MINISTRY

The Audit Office checked up the activity of the European Union Funds Management Directorate of the Ministry of Finance, the Chairman of the auditing body Georgi Nikolov said. He added that the experts' report was ready but not approved. In fact, this analysis will shed light on how much of the money launched by the European Union has been utilized, because it is exactly the Finance Ministry that the whole pre-accession financial support from the EU goes through. On June 2, the head of the Audit Office took part in the meeting of the interim parliamentary commission, investigating the utilization of European funds by the Ministry of Regional Development and Public Works between 1999 and 2004. That was the second meeting of the commission, but once again no concrete problems were put for discussion related to the ministry's activities during the audit period. However, the Chairman of the commission Ramzi Osman explained that MPs were going to start investigating the case seriously next week. In order to get the clearest idea and to be able to find the reasons for the failed utilization of the EU funds, we'll have to get to know the details of each memorandum and the projects included, Mr. Osman said.Up to June 9 the Ministry of Regional Development and Public Works must have provided detailed information on the first memo included in the audit. The Novoto Vreme faction MP Emil Koshloukov, however, said that even projects with signed contracts should be analysed. Even when part of the money has already been utilized, it doesn't mean that there are no violations, the deputy said.Moreover, it became clear that the Ministry of Finance has refused to provide the MPs with the report prepared by KPMG on the audit of the European money utilization. The ministry run by Milen Velchev justified themselves by saying they first had to be permitted by the European Commission to do so.

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