The Court of Auditors in the EU

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Relations between European Supreme Audit Institutions

The Contact Committee is an assembly of the Heads of the Supreme Audit Institutions (SAIs) in the EU Member States and of the European Court of Auditors (ECA). It fosters the exchange of professional knowledge and promotes activities of common interest that fall into the following categories:

  • Working Groups and Task Forces
  • Coordinated performance of audit activities
  • Training activities

At the annual meeting of the Contact Committee in 2018, held in Dubrovnik at the headquarters of the National Audit Office of the Republic of Croatia, the Statement on deficiencies in the accountability and audit arrangements of the supervisory mechanism for banks in the euro area was approved, among other agreements adopted.

 

2018 Contact Committee Meeting, Dubrovnik (Republic of Croatia)

2018 Contact Committee Meeting, Dubrovnik (Republic of Croatia)

 

Working Groups and Task Forces

They are ad hoc groups created by the Contact Committee to study and report on specific issues of common interest. Participation in these working groups is voluntary.

On the Contact Committee website you can find more information on contact Working Groups and active networks, as well as those who have already been closed.

The Court of Auditors currently participates in the following Groups:

Other groups in which it has also recently participated are:

Coordinated audits

These audits have the same subject of analysis in all countries whose SAIs, voluntarily, have taken the decision to participate.

In order to carry them out, a program of joint work is designed, performed by each national audit team in their country. This shall produce the corresponding Audit Report, processed according to national legislation and serving as a base, along with that of other participating countries, to develop a joint report presented to the Contact Committee.

As a result of these coordinated audits, the following Audit Reports have been prepared:

  • Joint action on management and control systems for assistance granted under the Structural Funds.
  • Report on the implementation of EU Structural Funds Regulations ensuring that Member States establish an adequate audit trail and comply with the independent controls on 5% of transactions (2004).
  • Joint action on programme management established under the Structural Funds regarding employment and/or environment (2008).
  • Report on prudential supervision of medium-sized and small (“less significant”) institutions in the European Union after the introduction of the Single Supervisory Mechanism (2017).

Training activities

Seminars, conferences and workshops are carried out jointly on various topics of professional interest. Training practices for staff of other SAIs may also be performed.

Relations in the field of audit of EU funds

The European Court of Auditors regularly carries out audit missions of the management of EU funds in the Member States of the European Union, without prejudice to the competence of the national SAIs, who collaborate with the auditors of the EU in the terms of collaboration resulting from Article 287.3 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.

For this, a liaison officer that facilitates contacts between the European Court of Auditors and the audited national entities is designated. Liaison Officers of the SAIs of the European Union and the European Court of Auditors meet twice a year, in order to prepare the meetings of the Contact Committee and provide an active network of professional contacts.

On the other hand, the Spanish Court of Auditors regularly appoints observers for the Spanish European Court of Auditors missions to Spain. Observers are civil servants of the Court of Auditors that, although they have no direct involvement in the conduct of audits, play a supporting role to community auditors.

The results of the audits are communicated to the Court of Auditors, for its knowledge.

The European Court of Auditors' Annual Report is presented annually in Spain, emphasizing the results obtained in our country.