BRUSSELS, The way in which European Union funding is channelled through NGOs (Non-Governmental Organisations) for humanitarian and development aid, environmental protection, culture and other purposes needs to be more transparent, according to a new report published by the European Court of Auditors (ECA) Tuesday.
The current system of classifying organisations as NGOs is not reliable, warn the auditors, and the European Commission does not have sufficiently detailed information on how the money is spent. There is a similar lack of clarity when EU money is paid to NGOs indirectly through United Nations bodies, said the ECA which is based in Luxembourg.
NGOs help the European Commission to design, implement and monitor EU programmes in many policy areas, such as humanitarian and development aid, the environment, and research and innovation.
Between 2014 and 2017, the European Commission planned an estimated 11.3 billion euro (USD 12.8) billion of spending for use by NGOs.
“The EU is the world’s biggest aid donor and NGOs often play an essential role in delivering that aid. But EU taxpayers need to know that their money is being paid over to properly defined organisations and that the Commission will have to account for it fully,” said Annemie Turtelboom, the ECA Member responsible for the report.
Source: Kuwait News Agency