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Hungary instructed to repay €11 mln in farm subsidies

The European Commission has deicide to recover a total of €265.02 million of CAP farming expenditure from member states.

A total of € 265.02 million of EU farm money unduly spent by member states is to be claimed back as a result of a decision adopted today by the European Commission. This money returns to the EU budget because of non-compliance with EU rules or inadequate control procedures on agricultural expenditure.

Member states are responsible for paying out and checking expenditure under the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), and the Commission is required to ensure that member states have made correct use of the funds.

Commenting on the decision, Dacian Cioloş, Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, said “we are working hard to achieve the best possible control of farm spending in order to verify that taxpayers money is not being misspent.”

Under the decision funds will be recovered from Austria, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Luxembourg, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and United Kingdom. The most significant individual corrections are:

- €137.0 million charged to United Kingdom – England for weaknesses in the Land Parcel Identification System (LPIS-GIS), in the administrative procedure as regards controls and cross checks, deficiencies in the risk analysis, and for incorrect calculation of payments and sanctions;

- € 52.4 million charged to United Kingdom – England for, inter alia, insufficient checks of beneficiaries under the investors category of the National Reserve, transcription errors, absence of control with regard to new farmers;

- €33.7 million charged to United Kingdom – Northern Ireland for weaknesses related to the LPIS-GIS, and in on-the-spot checks and deficiencies in the application of regulatory sanctions;

- €11.0 million charged to Hungary for incorrect exchange rate and value added tax incorrectly included for establishing the purchase value of white sugar into public storage. (BBJ)