The EU needs to further strengthen its legal requirements for national budgetary frameworks and better monitor how Member States put them into practice, according to a new report from the European Court of Auditors (ECA). In several respects the requirements are softer than international standards and the European Commission has so far only limited knowledge about whether countries apply them properly. The auditors also warn against the risk of inconsistency between the Commission’s and independent fiscal institutions’ (IFIs) assessment of countries’ compliance with EU fiscal rules, as well as of the limited effectiveness of the European Fiscal Board due to the fact that it is not fully independent from the Commission.
On Wednesday 4 December 2019, the European Court of Auditors (ECA) will publish a special report on EU Fiscal Governance – the EU requirements for national budgetary frameworks. The auditors examined whether the EU requirements strengthened the national budgetary frameworks and whether the European Commission assessed how the Member States applied them. This included an examination of the role of national independent fiscal institutions (IFIs) and the European Fiscal Board. The auditors also carried out a survey across all IFIs and visited relevant stakeholders in eight Member States in the euro area: Greece, Spain, France, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Portugal and the Netherlands.
Update: the opening remarks by Vice-President Dombrovskis and the remarks by Commissioner Moscovici on the Autumn Fiscal Package are now available.
The European Commission has today presented its Opinions on euro area Member States’ 2020 Draft Budgetary Plans, taken steps under the Stability and Growth Pact and adopted the fourth Enhanced Surveillance Report for Greece.