European Auditors will Check how Money is Spent on Roads in Bulgaria and 3 More Countries

Bulgaria in EU | May 7, 2019, Tuesday // 08:30|  views

The European Court of Auditors has announced that it is starting to audit the EU funding of the road network connecting the Member States and their regions. The auditors will look at whether the European Commission's actions and the funds allocated provide progress for Member States to timely network completion and better connectivity for citizens, the institution said.

Between 2007 and 2020, the allocated European funding for road and rail connectivity to their countries and regions amounted to EUR 82 billion, half of which was allocated to smoothing the core network. The main beneficiaries of this funding are the Central and Eastern European Member States.

The survey will cover Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Poland and Spain.

In the 1990s, the European Commission set itself the objective of developing a Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T), which also includes road infrastructure. The idea is that by 2030 nine main corridors, about 40,000 km long from the Baltic Sea to the Atlantic and from Scandinavia to the Mediterranean, will be completed. By 2050, it is the time to ensure the accessibility and connectivity of all regions in Europe.

At the same time, the Member States in Central and Eastern Europe are not well served by East-West relations nor linked to each other, the European Court of Auditors has established so far.

"In recent decades, EU funding has helped improve transport links between Member States and their regions, but there are still gaps in the road network, missing links and bottlenecks," said Djordje Pufan, the European Court of Auditors is responsible for the audit. He expressed concern that the entire EU core network would not be completed in time.

The auditors will check whether the establishment of the core network for the EU is progressing and whether the deadlines are respected and whether it is maintained in good condition. The purpose of the check is whether the European Commission itself monitors compliance with the deadlines and whether the funding goes as intended.

The audit report is expected to be published early in 2020.