|Author (Person)||Shelley, John|
|Series Title||European Voice|
|Series Details||Vol.7, No.21, 24.5.01, p2|
THE European Commission will today (Wednesday 23 May) propose news laws designed to clamp down on fraud by plugging the most serious hole in the EU's leaking budget.
The rules, aimed at tackling the fraudulent spending of Union money in member states, would force governments to introduce prison sentences for people who steal large sums and also oblige them to make sure that companies caught with their fingers in the till can be prosecuted.
Fighting fraud in member states is seen as vital to improving the efficiency of EU spending. Most Union money is spent by national governments and it is at this level that most corruption occurs, according to the Commission.
The proposals are its second attempt to harmonise national laws to make it easier to coordinate the fight against improper spending. The first try, the Convention on the Protection of Financial Interests, was agreed in 1995 but governments were slow ratifying it and the rules are still not fully in force.
Now Budget Commissioner Michaele Schreyer and justice chief António Vitorino say the Union cannot afford to wait any longer. Under the latest proposals, courts would have to have the option of custodial sentences for those who steal more than €50,000.
The European Commission will propose new laws designed to clamp down on fraud by plugging the most serious hole in the EU's leaking budget, 23.5.01.
|Subject Categories||Economic and Financial Affairs|