OPINION

It is time to look carefully at how EU money is spent

It seems that it is our fate to ignore the substance of an issue and waste our energy on secondary matters. The fate of funds from the three support packages sent to Greece under the EU-sponsored Community Support Framework over the past 20 years is no exception to the rule. In a clear sign of poor management, Greece is the only country that has constantly failed to draft any comprehensive review of projects built with EU funds – let alone a comparison of implemented projects against budgeted ones. The situation betrays the get-the-money-first-think-how-to-spend-it-later mentality of the country’s governments. This has led to the fragmentation of projects aimed at serving regional interests. As a result, big infrastructure projects have been sacrificed on the altar of petty politicking. Money that should have been used to bolster Greece’s growth prospects is instead ending up in the pockets of a corrupt minority. Voters have every right to be disillusioned. Nevertheless, there is still money from the third package waiting to be invested. The government should make sure that it is properly managed.