EU gives thumbs-up to checks on funds

Just a month after Greece was ordered to hand back over 500 million euros of European Union funds due to mismanagement of their expenditure, Brussels commended the government on controls it has implemented to oversee projects running on EU money. The European Commission yesterday issued a positive assessment of the management and control systems Greece has put in place for European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) payments under the Third Community Support Framework (CSFIII). Commissioner for European Regional Policy Danuta Hubner said that the positive assessment brings an end to a longstanding problem. «I hope it will provide the sound basis for a renewed effort by the Greek authorities to successfully implement its current European Regional Policy programs,» she said. Early last month, Greece agreed with the EU to pay back 518 million euros after EU officials discovered irregularities in the way the money was used to pay for public works between 2000 to 2004. In what the Commission called a «financial correction,» Greece is to repay the amount over four years.

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