The Parliamentary Budgets Committee (BUDG) and the Budgetary Control Committee (CONT) have today confirmed in Brussels the European’s Parliament determination to make in the future the payment of any EU subsidies conditional on the respect of the rule of law. Recent cases in some Member States have shown that the European funds may be subject to fraud or corruption, without triggering serious proceedings because of the shortcomings of the judicial system.
Renew Europe particularly welcomes the fact that it has worked to broaden the scope of application to all the values of the Union within the meaning of Article 2 of the Treaty and to obtain a panel of independent experts to assist the Commission in its decisions to defer payments. The European Parliament will be on an equal footing with the Council when it comes to taking or giving up sanctions. These measures, which the plenary session will have to confirm, will come into force with the next Multiannual Financial Framework.
Valérie HAYER (Renaissance, France), coordinator of Renew Europe in BUDG, said : "We, as Renew Europe, strongly defend the mechanism for the protection of the EU's budget in case of a breach of the rule of law. We expect the Council to swiftly find a common position and start negotiations".
Olivier CHASTEL (MR, Belgique), coordinator of Renew Europe in CONT, underlined : "Freedom without rights is only virtual freedom. There can be no compromise on the rule of law, human rights or democracy".
Moritz KÖRNER (FDP, Germany), Renew Europe’s shadow rapporteur on the MFF in BUDG, added: "As a guardian of democracy and defenders of the rule of law, Renew Europe’s key priority will be to ensure that the next MFF contains a rule of law mechanism that protects the Union’s budget when the protection of the financial interests of the Union cannot be ensured. With us, there will be no rebate on European values".
Katalin CSEH (Momentum, Hungary), Renew Europe’s spokeperson on this issue in CONT, concluded: “We are here to defend democracy and the rule of law. If rulers like Viktor Orban do not respect fundamental European values, then the EU needs to make sure that less money goes to their cronies and more to financing citizens’ projects directly!”